Flûte Alors! opens the season of Canada’s150th Anniversary. February 3, 2017 

Flûte Alors!, the nation’s only professional recorder quartet, began the 2017 season of the Lyell Gustin Recital Series in celebration of Canada’s Sesquicentennial. The dynamic Montreal-based ensemble displayed great musical versatility and showed the remarkable capabilities of their instrument in a program entitled “Bach’n Jazz.” Included in the recital were original arrangements of some of J.S. Bach’s famed works for organ and ensemble alongside well-loved jazz standards. Flûte Alors! artists Alexa Raine-Wright and Vincent Lauzer gave the pre-concert chat. This recital, held at St. Andrew’s Presbyterian Church, was a co-presentation with Prairie Debut.


In Praise of the Queen of Instruments: Solos and Duets for Piano. March 5, 2017

The piano–magnificently expressive, powerful, versatile, and loved by amateur and professional alike all over the world–has been described as the Queen of Instruments, and as "the single great factor in the development of musical art and the dissemination of musical knowledge." To celebrate the star instrument of musical history and to mark an important stage in restoration of the Gustin Steinway grand piano, four Sunday programs in 2017 feature visiting pianists connected with the Gustin Studio.

On March 5, pianist-composer Boyd McDonald, distinguished Gustin graduate, and Carolyn Arnason, Gustin musical descendant––both of Kitchener, Ontario––performed a fine recital of solos and duets for piano. Mr. McDonald played and spoke about his compositions, Three Preludes and An Artist’s Neighbourhood, which he performed in New York for the Leschetizky Association this season. Dr. Arnason joined him for two colourful duet suites: Six épigraphes antiques by Claude Debussy, and Eight Dances by Mátyás Seiber. The event was a joyful musical highlight during a snowbound Saskatchewan weekend!


Janina Fialkowska performs all-Chopin piano recital. April 3, 2017 

Gustin House was honoured and privileged to present distinguished international pianist Janina Fialkowska in recital, a marvellous musical evening that many described as “the concert of a lifetime!” For the large and warmly enthusiastic audience at St. Andrew’s Presbyterian Church, Ms. Fialkowska performed an all-Chopin program in a full range of genres that revealed both her exquisite lyrical artistry and her brilliant technical mastery. The Canadian-born artist is known worldwide as one of the great interpreters of the works of Chopin and a champion of the music of Liszt and 20th century Polish composers. A pre-concert talk was given by Saskatoon pianist Gregory Schulte.


In Praise of the Queen of Instruments: Nature-inspired Music for Piano, and Landscape Art of our Province. May 28, 2017

The year’s celebration of the piano continued with Alison Kilgannon performing music inspired by nature’s beauty and power: Beethoven’s Pastoral Sonata, Debussy’s Images, vol. I, and the Piano Sonata by Bartok. Dr. Kilgannon, presently based in Red Deer, AB, had been a student of the well-known Gustin Studio graduate, Diana Wiens of Edmonton, who was present for the program.

Levi Nicholat, Saskatoon artist, curator and gallery director, spoke about paintings by Saskatchewan landscape artists, discussing the province’s rich tradition as influenced by national/international styles yet reflecting this region’s unique geography. To the delight of all present, Gustin House was a veritable gallery of works by several distinguished artists, some of whom were in attendance. Gustin House thanks The Gallery/Art Placement for generously loaning the paintings for the Sunday afternoon event.


Oleksander Mycyk and Sofia Mycyk give cello-piano recital. August 22, 2017

Cellist Oleksander Mycyk and pianist Sofia Mycyk performed a recital for their hometown audience to conclude the Canada-150th Lyell Gustin Recital Series. The program was patterned, said the cellist, on those from the “golden era of string playing:” Bach’s Suite for Solo Cello No. 3 and Brahms’ E-minor Sonata for Cello and Piano were the heart of the repertoire, followed by works by Popper, Penderecki, and others. Brother and sister, the artists grew up and began their studies in Saskatoon; both are now in Doctoral Performance programs in the USA, Oleksander Mycyk at Northwestern in Chicago, and Sofia Mycyk at the University of Minnesota in Minneapolis. Mr. Mycyk gave the pre-concert talk.


In Praise of the Queen of Instruments: The Composer Speaks. October 1, 2017

A festive autumn afternoon at Gustin House featured piano music by David L. McIntyre of Regina. Presenting his compositions in one genre, the nocturne, the composer both performed and discussed each work, sharing insights about its musical elements as well as the thought and inspiration that led to its creation. A highlight was the world premiere of Nocturne for Ruth (2016), performed by guest pianist Gregory Schulte, and in the presence of the dedicatee, Ruth Farrow of Toronto.

Mr. McIntyre, who began musical life as a piano student of his uncle, Gustin graduate Roy Morden, declared with great pleasure that he is living his childhood dream of being a composer. He concluded the afternoon’s program by announcing publication of his new collection, Nine Nocturnes, and presenting the first copy to Gustin House. 


In Praise of the Queen of Instruments: From Schubert and Schumann to Music in Canada today. November 26, 2017

In conclusion of Canada’s 150th, and in honour of the piano as the prized and golden instrument of music history, Gustin House held its finale to 2017 at Yamaha Piano Centre, Saskatoon. Christine Vanderkooy of Windsor Ontario, performed Schubert’s Drei Klavierstücke, D. 946 and Schumann’s Kinderszenen; she also gave the world premiere of the sparkling piano work, Finding Evelyn by David L. McIntyre, with the composer in attendance. 

Eric Paetkau, Music Director of the Saskatoon Symphony Orchestra, spoke eloquently about “The Bright Future of Canadian Music,” describing a the current Canadian music scene and highlighting specific composers and their works. Gustin House warmly thanks Marie and Roger Jolly for graciously hosting the special event in their spacious premises among an array of fine pianos. 


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

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