Originally from London Ontario, Sherry Steele is a graduate of the University of Western Ontario. She has performed with orchestras and in musical theatre throughout Canada, and toured internationally as a featured singer in Riverdance – The Show. Sherry also performed with the Broadway company of Riverdance, at the Gershwin Theatre for more than a year. Sherry has been teaching piano and voice for more than twenty years, most recently at the Don Wright Faculty of Music at Western University, and currently at the University of Alberta.
Flutist Shelley Younge has held the position of Assistant Principal Flute of the Edmonton Symphony Orchestra since 1978, and has been a featured soloist on many occasions. Other orchestral duties have included the Banff Festival Orchestra, Banff Opera, Banff Ballet Orchestra, the Alberta Baroque Ensemble, Pro Coro Canada and the Edmonton Chamber Players Orchestra. A frequent performer of chamber music on CBC radio and television, Shelley has appeared in recital with such notable performers as Celtic harpist Mary O'Hara, and the late Lois Marshall.
Ms. Younge's long teaching career has produced many professional flutists around the world. She has taught for many years at MusiCamrose and the Banff International Music School, and is presently teaching at the University of Alberta, where she was the recipient of the Francis Winspear Visiting Professor position.
Shelley received her Bachelor of Music from the renowned Indiana University School of Music, and has studied or attended masterclasses with Julius Baker (New York Philharmonic), Walfred Kujala (Chicago Symphony), Jim Walker, William Bennett, James Galway and the late Jean-Pierre Rampal. She has also attended classes with Robert Dick, Ian Clarke, Lorna McGhee, and Mathias Ziegler.
Pianist Patricia Tao, founding member of the Guild Trio for ten years, leads an active career as performer, teacher and concert organizer. As pianist of the prizewinning Guild Trio, she performed throughout the United States and Europe and was awarded the position of Trio-in-Residence at the Tanglewood Music Centre. As a soloist, Dr. Tao toured Europe and the United States as an Artistic Ambassador under the auspices of the USIA and for Columbia Artist’s Community Concerts series.
Dr. Tao’s live performances have been broadcast on National Public Radio’s “Performance Today,” WNYC’s “Around New York,” WQXR’s “The Listening Room,” the public television series “Premiere Performances” out of St. Louis, Chicago’s WFMT and on CBC. She has commissioned and premiered numerous works, including William Bolcom’s “Spring Trio,” and Sheila Silver’s “To the Spirit Unconquered,” which she recorded on the CRI label. She has also recorded a solo CD on the Arktos label featuring works of Schubert, Liszt and Corigliano, and Chopin and Strauss cello and piano sonatas on the Centaur label.
An avid chamber musician, Patricia Tao performs frequently with fellow Trio Voce members, violinist Jasmine Lin and cellist Marina Hoover. They have recorded two CDs, one featuring the the music of Shostakovich and Weinberg, and their latest containing trios by Suk, Arensky, and Zemlinsky, which Fanfare describes as “committed music-making on a level rarely heard today.”
As concert organizer, Dr. Tao has served as Artistic Director for the Edmonton Chamber Music Society’s Summer Solstice Music Festival for eleven years and organizes the Hear’s to Your Health Concerts at the Walter Mackenzie Health Sciences Centre at the University of Alberta.
Dr. Tao received her undergraduate education at Harvard University, a master’s degree with distinction from Indiana University and her doctorate from the State University of New York at Stony Brook, where her principal teachers were Leonard Shure, Gyorgy Sebok and Gilbert Kalish. She has given master classes at numerous schools in North America, Europe and China and has held performance residencies in East Hampton, NY, Stony Brook University and the University of Virginia. She is Professor of Music at the University of Alberta, where she teaches piano and chamber music.
Brian Thurgood obtained a Masters of Music Education in Jazz Studies from the University of Victoria and a Bachelor of Music in Percussion Performance from the University of Alberta. He has developed both a successful teaching and a varied performance career.
He has been the Percussion/Drumset department head at MacEwan College since 1980 where he designed, developed and implemented a successful program curriculum. Many of his students have continued to have careers in music either as educators or performers including drummers for such acts as Social Code, Nickleback, Jann Arden and K-OS. He has also taught at SummerJazz and MusicAlberta summer camps and has presented numerous clinics for Cantando, UniFest and Musicfest Canada.
Brian’s has performed as both a classical/pop percussionist and as a drum set artist. He has performed with the Edmonton Symphony Orchestra, Edmonton Opera, Alberta and Winnipeg Ballet Companies, Tommy Banks, PJ Perry, Ian Tyson and Ashley MacIssac. He has performed over 60 musicals including those at the Citadel Theatre, as well as traveling musicals including Phantom of the Opera, Evita and Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat with Donny Osmond.
Brian has also had several articles published in Downbeat and MusicCom magazines. He is also co-writer of Percussion Clinic, published by First Stroke Publishing.