Ben Bolt-Martin, cello, is a graduate of Wilfrid Laurier University (‘96) in orchestral performance, studying with Paul Pulford of the Penderecki Quartet and also of the University of Western Ontario (2004), studying with Tom Wiebe. He also studied at the graduate level at University of Wisonconsin, Milwaukee’s Institute of Chamber Music with Wolfgang Laufer of the Fine Arts quartet. Ben has played cello with the Stratford Festival since 2001. He is also principal cello with the Georgian Bay Symphony and plays with the Georgian Bay String Quartet. Ben lives in Waterloo with his wife Liz and three cats.
Linda Choi, violin, was born in Toronto and was a scholarship student at the Young Artists Program Academy in Toronto with Victor Danchenko and Atis Bankas. She graduated from McGill University with a Licentiate in Violin Performance and was a graduate student at the Cleveland Institute of Music. With a passion for teaching young Children, she is a certified Suzuki Violin Teacher with the Oakville Suzuki Association. Linda performs with many orchestras and smaller ensembles in Ontario including the Hamilton Philharmonic and the Kitchener-Waterloo Symphony, and is a Mentor for the Young Artists program with the Oakville Symphony.
Paul Earle, principal violin, began his musical training at age thirteen. He earned his Artist Diploma in performance from the University of Western Ontario and continued studies at the Royal Conservatory. He has played for the Kitchener-Waterloo, Windsor, London, and Thunder Bay Symphony Orchestras and currently is a regular with the Hamilton Philharmonic Orchestra. He has been soloist with the Windsor Symphony, Kitchener-Waterloo Chamber Orchestra, and the Northern Ontario Music Festival Orchestra. Paul is, at present concertmaster of the Georgian Bay Symphony in Owen Sound. He has played on recordings for radio broadcast, and also plays electric violin for several pop groups. Paul makes his home in Guelph.
Lucy-Ana Gaston, violin, was recently featured as an up-and-coming young artist in the Toronto International Chamber Music Festival, held at the Toronto Centre for the Arts. A recipient of the TD Canada Trust scholarship grant, Lucy-Ana also received top prize at the Contemporary Showcase Festival in Toronto. In 2002, she performed at Hamilton Place accompanied by Symphony Hamilton as the winner of their Young Artists’ Competition. Other solos include Bach, Vivaldi, Saint-Saens, and Mozart concerti with the Chamber Players, Symphony Hamilton, and the Oakville Chamber Orchestra. Having performed at the Holocaust Education Week, she subsequently recorded a collection of Jewish music at the Glenn Gould Studio. She has appeared on other CDs such as Arcady’s “A Beckett Miscellany”. As a chamber musician, Lucy-Ana plays with the Cavatina Duo, Chiaroscuro Quartet, Duo Acorde, Arcady, and has been a member of Symphony Hamilton, the Oakville Chamber Orchestra, and the National Academy Orchestra.
Megan Jones earned a Bachelor of Music in Violin Performance from the University of McGill in the year 2000, graduating with high distinction. Ms. Jones currently plays as a substitute violin with the Kitchener Waterloo, the Windsor Symphony Orchestra, the Hamilton Philharmonic Orchestra and several other symphonies across Ontario. She has been an Associate Mentor for several years with the National Academy Orchestra under maestro Boris Brott, and is the orchestra manager and librarian for the Brott Music Festival. Ms. Jones began teaching at the International Music Academy in Mississauga, in 2003 and purchased the Academy from the original owner, Lois Wells-Bernard, in 2008. She teaches piano, violin, voice and all levels of theory at the Academy as well as maintaining the school and its 9 other teachers. The past few years Ms. Jones has performed several solo concertos with the Deep River Symphony Orchestra and the Timmins Symphony. Ms. Jones has been fortunate enough to play in the opera Salome with the Canadian Opera Company.
Praise Lam, violin, is a recipient of numerous awards and scholarships who is emerging as a highly active soloist, chamber musician and orchestral musician both in Canada and abroad. In 2002, Praise was invited to play for the Canadian Ambassador to China and the Director of the Canada Arts Council in Beijing. Since capturing the 2003 Emerging Performing Arts Award at the Mississauga Arts Awards, Praise’s solo performances has taken her from her hometown orchestral stage with the Mississauga Philharmonic Orchestra to television appearances with Rogers Cable & CBC to Hollywood’s 20th Century Fox Newman Scoring Stage in Los Angeles, California. Praise holds an ARCT Diploma from the Royal Conservatory of Music, a Bachelor of Music Performance degree and a Bachelor of Education degree from the University of Toronto and has also spent two years at the Beijing Central Conservatory of Music. Praise also had the opportunity to play for such esteemed musicians as Jose Luis Garcia, Mauricio Fuks, and members of the St. Lawrence String Quartet, the Orford String Quartet, and the Prazak String Quaret. A student of Canadian composer Larysa Kuzmenko at the Royal Conservatory, Praise Lam won the Ettore Mazzoleni Memorial Composition Scholarship and the Dr. Igor Kuchivnsky Memorial Composition Scholarship for three years.
David Lenson has been performing on lute and other early string instruments for approximately thirty years. A graduate of Wilfrid Laurier University’s Baroque and Early Music program, he has made his home in London for the past 25 years and performs regularly throughout southwestern Ontario. David received his Masters of Musicology from the University of Western Ontario in 1987. As a member of Arcady he has appeared in many programs and was the stage director for the Arcady productions of Purcell’s Dido and Aeneas, Handel’s Acis and Galatea, the Beckett opera trilogy, and Mozart’s The Magic Flute. As a counter-tenor, he has sung with Arcady and The Renaissance Singers of Kitchener. David has played a number of instruments in Arcady performances, including theorbo, lute, baroque guitar, recorder, violone, and percussion. He has also served on its Board of Directors for many years and has been the producer of two Arcady CD recordings: Welcome Yule! and most recently, Ruth.
Rebecca MacLeod, violin is enjoying a diverse career as a soloist, chamber musician and orchestral performer. Rebecca is currently an artist-member of Pocket Concerts, an in-home chamber music series. She has also been invited to perform as part of the Archipelago Collective Festival on San Juan Island, Washington, the Festival de Febrero, Ajijic, Mexico, and regularly performs with her piano trio, the Jane Street Trio based in Toronto. Orchestrally, Ms. MacLeod has performed with the National Ballet Orchestra of Canada, the Canadian Opera Company Orchestra and served as concertmaster of the University of Toronto Symphony Orchestra. She has also performed with Orchestra London, the Niagara Symphony, and the Toronto Summer Music Festival Orchestra. Ms. MacLeod has performed and participated in many international music festivals including National Repertory Orchestra, The Domaine Forget Chamber Session, The St. Lawrence String Quartet Seminar, The Aspen Music Festival and School, The International Music Academy Plzen, Czech Republic, The National Arts Centre’s Young Artists Programme, and the Morningside Music Bridge. Ms. MacLeod has been featured performing on HGTV Extreme Homes and was invited to perform with The Arkells and the National Academy Orchestra at the 2015 Juno Awards. She has also collaborated and performed with acclaimed electric violinist Tracy Silverman and recently recorded tracks for the film Mariner, which was chosen to be featured at the Toronto International Film Festival this fall. Ms. MacLeod completed a Master’s of Music degree at The University of Toronto under Jonathan Crow. She holds a BFA from Carnegie Mellon University and an Artist Diploma from The Glenn Gould School at The Royal Conservatory of Music. Her primary instructors have been Paul Kantor, Barry Shiffman, Andres Cardenes, Bill van der Sloot and Wendy Herbison.
Daniel Payne, violincello, is a native Londoner who holds an undergraduate from the University of Western Ontario in history and music, his teaching certificate, a degree in Musicology (with thesis) and has recently completed another Master’s programme in Library Information Science. Daniel began his career as a performer playing with the London Youth Orchestra and the UWO Symphony Orchestra. Since then he has played with groups including the Sarnia Clarion Orchestra, and in numerous regional string quartets and chamber ensembles. His special interest in Baroque music has led him to be an active continuo in UWO’s Early Music Studio, London’s Parnassus, Hamilton’s Te Deum Choir and Orchestra, and Arcady. Highlights in his career include three seasons at the Glenn Gould Studio with Te Deum, performing with the eminent Dutch violinist Japp Schroeder (1998, 1999), and Handel’s Messiah with Arcady (1999 to present).
Filip Stasiak, Double Bassist, holds a Diploma in Chamber Music from Wilfrid Laurier University, a MMus in Literature and Performance from the University of Western Ontario, and a BMus from Wayne State University in Detroit. His primary instructors have included the late Detroit Symphony Bassist Maxim Janowsky, members of the Penderecki String Quartet, and UWO professor Jeffrey Stokes. In addition to university training, Stasiak has spent multiple summers at the Orford Arts Centre studying with world renowned double bass virtuoso Joel Quarrington. As a performer, Stasiak is currently a member of the Niagara Symphony and the International Symphony, and works as a freelance player with orchestras, chamber ensembles, and music theatre productions throughout Ontario. A recent interest in period performance has led Stasiak to study with Tafelmusik at both their Summer and Winter institutes, and subsequently to perform with Toronto’s Talisker Players and the Aradia Ensemble. As an educator, Stasiak maintains a large private studio in London Ontario and is a double bass instructor in the Music Education Department at Western University.