Pianist Nikolai Choubine opens 10th Anniversary Series

In a recital entitled “Glories of the Piano’s Golden Age,” Nikolai Choubine launched the 10th Anniversary Season of the Lyell Gustin Recital Series. Describing his repertoire as “jewels of Romantic piano literature,” the artist included a significant representation of music from his native Russia. It was a special pleasure for the audience to hear Mussorgsky’s entire “Pictures at an Exhibition” in the original piano version. The pre-concert chat was given by Rika Asai Choubine, a native of Saskatoon and a musical descendant of Lyell Gustin.


Celebrating Cultural Heritage with Music and Art. February 23, 2014

During Saskatchewan Heritage Week 2014, a celebration of music and art took place in the setting of Gustin House, a Provincial Heritage Property. The afternoon event highlighted the significance and the breadth of cultural heritage in our lives as individuals and as a society. Clarinetist Paul Hyunbai, cellist Scott McKnight and pianist Jaya Hoy performed Beethoven’s Trio, Op. 38. Artist Grant McConnell, known for acrylic on wood painting as well as sculptural and bronze works, spoke about historical subject matter in visual art.


Guy & Nadina give Spring Recital in 10th Anniversary Season

An evening program in mid-November 2005 began anew the tradition of small-scale musical and cultural events in Gustin House.  Lyell Gustin had founded his studio environment upon his conviction of the unity of the fine arts and the belief that knowledge of one art enhances understanding of the others; in that spirit, he arranged many events to bring together performers, artists, and scholars of literature and philosophy. 

In keeping with this ideal, the first program of "Celebrating the Fine Arts" was held at Gustin House on Sunday, November 13,  exploring textures of the artistic medium through pottery, poetry, and music for flute.  Martin Tagseth, potter, who has studied, taught and exhibited works internationally, brought a wonderful array of pieces from his studio in Lake Lenore, Saskatchewan, and reflected on the experience of "Creating in Clay."  Dr. Raymond Stephanson, Professor of English at the University of Saskatchewan and a Gustin Studios graduate, read poetry and spoke on its rich associations with music.  Performances were by Saskatoon musicians, flautists Ross Carstairs and Brenda Moats, with pianist Gregory Schulte:  the haunting "Syrinx" by Debussy, a Trio by Quantz and a flute duo by Pleyel captivated listeners. In the audience were numerous Gustin graduates and friends of the Studios, some of whom--along with the artists and speakers--are shown below (photos by Michael Pomedli).

Gustin House
Gustin House, in collaboration with Prairie Debut, presented a recital by Guy Few performing on trumpet, corno, and piano, and bassoonist Nadina Mackie Jackson. Interspersed between works by Vivaldi, Bach, Paganini, Piazzolla, Saint-Saëns, and others, the artists’ shared stories of their tours and travels. Both artists have a link to Saskatchewan: Guy is a native of Saskatoon and a Gustin musical descendant through his longtime piano teacher, Sheila Shinkewski; and family members of Nadina stlll live in the North Battleford area. The pre-concert talk was given by Jaya Hoy.


Gustin House hosts Musical Art Club “Finale,” May 18, 2014

Gustin Studio graduates and Gustin musical descendants from four provinces gathered to mark the end of the Musical Art Club established by Lyell Gustin in 1924. The event celebrated Mr. Gustin’s vision in founding an organization to promote students’ musical knowledge and enrich their musical understanding by association with other instrumentalists and vocalists (goals stated in the Club bylaws). Over the decades, the Club and eventually its extended junior branches touched hundreds of people through music and the fine arts, and greatly influenced cultural life in Saskatoon and area.

At the May 18 program, Gustin graduate Walter Thiessen was also honoured: succeeding Mr. Gustin in the early 1980s as Director of the Musical Art Club, he led the Club with generosity for decades, and, before his passing in autumn 2013, had given careful thought to bringing the Club to its conclusion.

The “finale” of the Musical Art Club was held in the heritage setting of Gustin House where the Club had its beginnings 90 years earlier. An eight-hand piano ensemble--Lynn Ewing, Jaya Hoy, Karen Sterner, and Gregory Schulte--performed a movement of a symphony by Mendelssohn, and Boyd McDonald (Kitchener ON) performed solo works by Haydn, Beethoven, and Brahms. Joan Halmo gave a talk about the history of the Musical Art Club, tracing its remarkable development and its artistic impact on individuals and the community.

A reception followed the program, with festive refreshments provided by Garth and Marjorie Beckett (Toronto ON) and Hugh and Sheryl McKee. Former members of the Musical Art Club had written reminiscences that were on display for the event; programs and news articles from the Club’s storied past were also exhibited. In the photos below, nearly all those portrayed are Gustin graduates or Gustin musical descendants.


Lyell Gustin (1895-1988), and Walter Thiessen (1928-2013), ​
successive Directors of the Musical Art Club


Following the program at Gustin House, guests re-assembled at the beautiful heritage home of Karen Sterner and Steve Boechler for an informal dinner, visiting and more ensemble music.

Trio Concertante concludes 10th Anniversary Season

On Tuesday, August 19, Trio Concertante gave the final performance in the Lyell Gustin 10th Anniversary season. Saskatoon-born pianist Timothy Steeves and violinist Nancy Dahn, who have previously appeared as a Duo on the Series, were joined by ensemble partner Simon Fryer, Principal Cellist of the Regina Symphony. The Trio’s summer evening recital of great classics comprised Beethoven’s Trio Op. 1, No. 2; Dvorak’s “Dumky" Trio, and Schubert’s B-flat Trio. Mr. Steeves, who is Professor of Piano at Memorial University, St. John’s NL, gave an engaging pre-concert talk on the repertoire.


On Stage! The Romantic Violin, and Theatre Arts. October 5, 2014

The new season at Gustin House began with rich Romantic music for violin and piano, and a talk given by one of Saskatchewan’s leading theatre personalities. Saskatoon musicians, violinist William Boan and pianist Jaya Hoy, performed works by Edvard Grieg, Pablo de Sarasate, and Fryderyk Chopin. Actor-director Kent Allen, who has worked extensively in theatre and TV/film, spoke about his own career and the inner experience of performing. A very full audience greatly appreciated the program of favourite musical repertoire, insights into life in theatre, and wonderful home baking in celebration of autumn!


Music and Painting: Unity of the Arts in the Gustin Studios. November 2, 2014

A program co-presented by Gustin House and The Gallery/Art Placement on Sunday, November 2, marked the conclusion of a festive week for the arts in the city, including the 50th anniversary of the Mendel Art Gallery, and the presentation in Saskatoon of the Lieutenant Governor’s Arts Awards. This event, the 36th inter-arts program arranged by Gustin House since autumn 2005, was held by exception at Art Placement downtown rather than at 512-Tenth Street, and featured three paintings that had at one time belonged to Lyell Gustin--works by Mashel Teitelbaum, James Henderson, and Ernest Lindner. Levi Nicholat, along with Gregory Schulte, who studied with both Ernest Lindner and Lyell Gustin, spoke about the artists. For the musical portion of the program, flautist Ross Carstairs and violist James Legge, with Mr. Schulte at the keyboard, performed works by Bach, Schumann, Debussy, Bloch and Arnold.

Gustin House thanks our co-presenter The Gallery/Art Placement and its owners, Levi Nicholat and Donald Roach, for a unique opportunity to celebrate the unity of the arts as envisioned by Lyell Gustin. We acknowledge gratefully the Mendel Art  Gallery for loan of art works and Saskatoon Academy of Music for loan of an instrument.


Gustin House, c/o 47 Pony Trail, Riverside Estates, Saskatoon SK S7T1A4, Canada

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