The Chilliwack Metropolitan Orchestra is welcoming four young musicians to perform onstage for its inaugural Rising Stars concert. (Greg Laychak/ Progress file)

Young musicians share stage with Chilliwack Metropolitan Orchestra

The CMO’s inaugural Rising Stars concert is set for this Sunday in Chilliwack

Four young musicians will be in the spotlight as they get the chance to perform with Chilliwack Metropolitan Orchestra this weekend.

The students — Jonah Kassel (violin), Sarah Anderson-Caulfield (soprano), Jackson Howard (trombone) and Solchan Kim (violin) — were the winners of the CMO’s inaugural Rising Stars competition in January.

On Sunday, they’ll be sharing the stage with the local orchestra for its Rising Stars concert.

First on stage will be 10-year-old Jonah Kassel who will inspire everyone young at heart with a Vivaldi violin concerto. Sarah Anderson-Caulfield will then proceed to wow the audience with her vocal prowess in Massenet’s Je marche sur les chemins, a glittering aria celebrating youthful vitality. Jackson Howard brings his gorgeous trombone sound to unearth Ferdinand David’s Trombone Concertino, and the concert ends with Solchan Kim’s fiery rendition of Lalo’s Symphonie Espagnole.

The CMO will pair this dazzling energy with the equally exciting Symphony No. 2 in D Major by Beethoven.

The inaugural CMO Rising Stars concert is Sunday, March 31 at 3 p.m. at G.W. Graham secondary (45955 Thomas Rd.). Tickets $25/general, $15/seniors and youth and available at eventbrite.com, Long & McQuade Chilliwack (cash only), King’s Music, and The Book Man.

Student bios:

Jonah Kassel is a Grade 5 student at Unsworth Elementary School. Jonah has been playing violin under Karin Fehlauer for five and a half years. In 2017, at eight years old, Jonah won the Junior Strings division of the Chilliwack Lions Dance and Music Festival. In 2018, at nine years old, Jonah was named Most Promising Violinist across all ages and categories of the Chilliwack Lions Festival and was awarded a violin. He also won the Earl Dunn cup for “Ouststanding Violinist of the Festival”, and was named “Most Outstanding Student in the Festival”. Jonah was named the Provincial Representative for Chilliwack at the 2018 Music Festival, but since he was only 9 years old he was too young to actually compete. Jonah attended the Provincial Festival in Victoria under a special provision as a Merited Participant where he attended workshops and performed in one of the gala celebrations. Jonah participated in the week-long 2018 UBC Strings camp. Shortly after arriving at the camp Jonah was asked if he would mind quickly learning to play the viola, as there was only one viola student enrolled in the camp, and the music director felt the viola section needed at least one more instrument for the gala performance. In a matter of four days Jonah learned how to read alto clef and play the larger instrument, and played both violin and viola for the gala concert at the Chan Center for Performing Arts. Besides violin Jonah also plays piano and is learning guitar. He plays club soccer, downhill skis, mountain bikes, and does some rather extensive alpine hiking with his family in the summer.

Sarah Anderson-Caulfield is currently pursuing her Bachelor’s in Opera under the tutelage of Rhoslyn Jones. She’s delighted to be making her solo debuts with the CMO and with UBC Opera in 2019. In 2018, she was a soloist with the Vancouver Symphony in their touring Traditional Christmas concerts. Another highlight came in singing arias from Messiah with the Borealis string ensemble. Other performances include Mozart’s Vesperae solennes de confessore, Schubert’s Messe in G (at Kwantlen Polytechnic University,) Handel’s Dixit Dominus, and Papagena in Mozart’s Magic Flute (with the Chilliwack Symphony.) Within the trio Erdenlied (with Andrea Pedro, piano & Benjamin MacRae, clarinet) she won the Senior Canadian Chamber category at the 2017 BC Provincial music festival. She is the grateful recipient of a Jill and Mike Yonchak Scholarship for her self-accompanied recording of the Welsh folk song “Lwynn Onn,” as well as scholarships from the UBC and KPU Faculties of Music. When not singing, Sarah loves to read and spend time outdoors.

Jackson Howard began his musical studies at the age of three, starting piano at 5 and trombone at 13 years. He studies piano with Nita Pelletier, and completed his RCM Grade 10 with First Class Honours this past summer (2018). His trombone studies have been with Ellen Marple, Brian Wendel and have also been frequent with Gordon Cherry. In 2018, Jackson earned the Top Intermediate Brass award at the Performing Arts BC Festival, and he was selected for the BCMEA Honour Concert Band as well as the Denis Wick Canadian Wind Orchestra. Jackson is a member of the Chilliwack Metropolitan Orchestra and the Vancouver Youth Symphony Orchestra.

Solchan Kim is 17 years old and studies violin with Taras Gabora. He took violin lessons from the age of 9 with Karin Fehlauer until recently when he changed teachers to Mr. Gabora. Although the violin is his main instrument, Sol also actively plays other instruments such as the trombone, piano, drums and banjo in music groups such as his school’s jazz band, concert band, and Dixieland band. In previous years, Sol has won numerous awards from the Chilliwack Lions Club Music and Dance Festival, as well as the Performing Arts BC Provincial Music and Dance Festival. Sol had the highest mark in the province for the Royal Conservatory of Music Grade 9 Violin Exam in 2016. Sol has played in various musical settings such as in orchestras, wind ensembles, pit orchestras for musicals, jazz bands, concert bands, traditional jazz/Dixieland jazz bands, string quartets, and rock bands. Among his notable participation in groups are his involvement with Secondary Characters for multiple musicals such as Into The Woods, The Wizard of Oz, and Oklahoma! and his concertmaster position of the Chilliwack Metropolitan Orchestra. Currently Sol is studying in the hopes of going to Germany for a post-secondary musical education.

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