Join us on August 20 at 11:00am for a fun animal-themed concert for young listeners. This interactive program will consist of many entertaining and lively songs featuring animals such as ostriches, cats, pigs, swans, and more. The performers will be Emily Hiemstra (viola), who has performed at festivals around the world including Banff Centre for the Arts (Banff, CAN) and the German-Scandinavian Youth Orchestra (Berlin, GER), and Sonya Nanos (cello) who enjoys a diverse career and has performed with ensembles such as the Orlando Philharmonic and Quartetto Gelato, as well as artists like Michael Bublé and Andrea Bocelli. Complimentary snacks and activity pages will be provided following the concert.

August 20, 2024 - 11:00 am

39 Kerr-Shaver Terrace, Brantford, ON


​Emily Hiemstra


​Emily Hiemstra (b.1991) is a real life viola mom. She is a violist, composer, and mom to three boys under 4.

A JUNO nominated composer with music that has been deemed “superb” and “extremely resonant” (George Elliott Clarke, Canadian Poet Laureate), she has had her music performed at festivals throughout the UK, USA and Canada. Such festivals include the Impulse New Music Festival (Los Angeles, USA) and the Kirby Laing Centre for Public Theology (Cambridge, UK). Her orchestral and operatic background as a performer has deepened her understanding of colour and texture which she readily applies in her compositions to create clear and innovative works. Her desire is to create relevant and engaging music for the next generation and future generations to come.

A dedicated community member, Emily creates opportunities for new music such as the New Works for Solo Viola Project. She also strives to bring new music to a wider community through the In The Shadow of Your Wings concert series and performing family-friendly chamber concerts around the GTA. She also on the board of the Association of Canadian Women Composers as the Outreach & Publicity Officer.

As a violist she has performed at festivals around the world including Banff Centre for the Arts (Banff, CAN) and the German-Scandinavian Youth Orchestra (Berlin, GER). She performed the Stamitz Viola Concerto with the Charis Collective in 2017, and has played with ensembles such as the Canadian Opera Company and the Magisterra Soloists.

You can find her playing concerts around Toronto, ON or writing music when her boys are napping.

Sonya Nanos


Canadian cellist Sonya Nanos Hodgson charms audiences with her impassioned, imaginative playing. Her diverse career has included performances with ensembles such as the Orlando Philharmonic and Quartetto Gelato, as well as artists like Michael Bublé and Andrea Bocelli.

Sonya has been featured in The Walleye Magazine, the Thunder Bay Chronicle Journal, and has been broadcast nationally on CBC Radio. Her recording highlights include the JUNO-nominated album of Canadian works with the Thunder Bay Symphony Orchestra and an album of chamber orchestra works by American composer Paul Reale, where she can be heard as a soloist.

As an active chamber musician and recitalist, Sonya has been featured on the Lumina series, Symphony in the Barn, Consortium Aurora Borealis, and as a guest on Western University’s faculty chamber series. She has also premiered several chamber works by composers such as Greg Sandow (in Suk Hall, Prague), and Scott Wheeler.

Sonya is committed to inspiring students of any age or background to find joy and community through music. She has instructed at El Sistema Aeolian in London, ON and has also taught at Lakehead University, adjudicated local and provincial festivals, and the Festival Internacional de Música in Loja, Ecuador. This fall, Sonya begins her third season as a member of the Niagara Symphony Orchestra. Previously, she was section cellist with the Thunder Bay Symphony Orchestra.

Sonya holds a Master of Music from Lynn University where she was awarded the M. Elizabeth Maddy Cumpton Endowment Award for the “outstanding conservatory student of strings”, an Artist Diploma from the Glenn Gould School, and a Bachelor of Music from McGill University.


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Youth (age 3-16)
Child (age 2 or younger)