(l-r) Willem N. Sont, Ina Hunt-Turner and Trevor Sabourin
The fourth annual Arden Piano concert that took place on September 26 at the Kennebec Hall in Arden demonstrated that not only is there high quality local talent in the community but that it spans generations.
And for those who find contemporary music sometimes flat, taking refuge in the classics is not without its rewards.
Ina Hunt-Turner set the tone of the concert and focused listeners’ ears and opened the concert with a heartfelt rendition of the Sinatra classic “All the Way”.
Next, Trevor Sabourin, a 15-year-old resident of the Lanark Highlands, dazzled listeners with a play list that included works from the classical cannon by Mozart, Chopin, Bartok, Lecuona, Bach and Liszt, pieces not usually attempted by a piano student who has been playing for just three years.
Trevor demonstrated his technical prowess and emotional understanding of his musical choices that included the dreamy Nocturne in B flat minor Opus 9, No. 1 by Chopin, and an Arabesque by Debussy, among many others.
His technique shone through in the four Inventions and Sinfonias by Bach. Overall, he demonstrated a technical prowess and emotional connection to the music that greatly surpasses his age and three years of study.
He admitted his favorites to play are Chopin and Liszt and said that before taking up piano his music experience was very limited.
That apparently changed one Christmas when his parents brought home an electronic keyboard for the family that had some classical music built into it. Trevor listened to it and fell in love.
I asked Trevor if he considered himself a kind of a prodigy. He answered, “No, I would not want to call myself that since that refers to younger kids who can do anything at a very young age. I learn fast but it takes a lot of hard work. I practise four to five hours a day.”
Cynthia Bredfeldt is his teacher and is thrilled to be teaching a student of Trevor’s calibre. She stated, “I’ve been teaching for over 25 years and you don’t see this very often. It’s astounding and Trevor has a real gift.”
Trevor is working towards his grade 10 piano and then hopes to complete the ARCT diploma in piano performance.
After a short intermission Willem N Sont took to the stage and charmed the audience with his confident and seasoned playing of a number of selections, including works by Brahms, Liszt, and Grieg. Two Mussorgski’s sketches, “The Seamstress” and “In the Crimea” were expertly executed and delightfully demonstrated the comfort and confidence of this seasoned player.
Sont’s playing, like that of all experienced performers, creates a world that invites you in and leaves you hesitant to leave.
Originally from the Netherlands and now a resident of McDonalds Corners, Sont has been playing since he was eight years old and has a teaching diploma from Utrecht Conservatory of Music.
The annual Arden concerts are sponsored by the Township of Central Frontenac and were instigated by Larry Lightstone, a piano tuner/technician who continues to offer his support and technical skills.
Mayor Janet Gutowski and Mr. Lightstone are hoping, with the support of the township and members of the music-loving community, to secure the future acquisition of a grand piano that may be made in partial donation to the hall. The mayor explained, “If we could raise something in the neighbourhood of $1,000 to $1,200 it might be a possibility that we could make a grand piano appear on the stage for the next concert.”
Anyone interested in making a tax-deductible donation for the grand piano, can contact Mayor Janet Gutowski at 613-374-1355.