Music Alumni News 2016

A photo of the current School of Music building taken in the 1950sA photo of the current School of Music building at the corner of Wyandotte St. W. and Sunset Avenue taken in the 1950s

Soprano Christina Bell, BMT '13 in performanceChristina Bell, BMT ‘13

This past year has been quite busy. Currently, Toronto is my home base and I just finished a run of Carmen with the Canadian Opera Company and this month alone am singing in the world premiere of the opera Miracle Flight 571 by Lloyd Burritt with the Hamilton Philharmonic and later, I will be singing the role of Vitellia in La clemenza di Tito with a young Toronto group of emerging artists.  I am looking forward to being back at the COC in the fall and spring seasons for 2016/17.  Other exciting projects include putting together a concert series for fall 2016 specifically for smaller community orchestras and chamber ensembles (for outreach to small communities).

Courtney Fox Britton, BMus '05

Courtney was recently honoured with the Stouffville Music Award, in recognition of her abilities spanning all areas of the melodious arts, both vocal and instrumental.  Stouffville calls itself "Music Town Ontario."   Read the complete article in the Stouffville Sun-Tribune here                      

Henry Boon, BMus ’73, BED ‘74

Henry graduated in 1973 with a bachelor of music degree in music education and from the Faculty of Education the following year. He taught music at Assumption High School, Windsor, ON and retired in 1997. Henry is married to Susan. The couple has two grandchildren.
Henry has been active in church music and musical composition, winning a number of National and International composition competitions. He came in first in 2009 with a composition titled: “I Heard that God was Power," sponsored by the Pax Christi Chorale of Toronto, under direction of Stephanie Martin. He most recently (2015) won a composition competition with a Christmas Carol entitled “Do Not Be Afraid” sponsored by the Amadeus Choir of Toronto under direction of Dr. Lydia Adams. Henry’s wife Susan was the lyricist in all these winning choral works.
Henry is music director at Tecumseh United Church. He is currently the Scholarship Chair with the Royal Canadian College of Organists, Windsor/Essex Centre. 

Dr. Amy Clements-Cortes' recent research on Alzheimer's Disease and MusicDr. Amy Clements-Cortes, BMT ‘95

Amy presented 23 oral papers, 3 posters, and 1 workshop at national and international peer-refereed conferences and invited academic events this past year (Attached PDF lists all). She also had 17 publications, the most recent being:
Clements-Cortes, A., Ahonen, H., Evan, M., Freedman, M. & Bartel, L. (2016). Short term effects of rhythmic sensory stimulation in Alzheimer’s diease: An exploratory pilot study.                        Journal of Alzheimer’s Disease, 52(2), DOI 10.3233/JAD-160081
Amy Clements-Cortes with the CTV News crew talking about her recent research







Amelia Daigle, BMus ‘12

Brianna DeSantis, BHK, Movement Science ‘14

Adam Iannetta, BMus ‘13

Sarah D'Agnolo Vilella, BMus '08. BED '09

On Sunday, June 5th, Paulin Memorial Presbyterian Church marked the venue for A Treblesome Trio, a collaborative opera and musical theatre showcase featuring alumni from the University of Windsor: soprano, Brianna DeSantis; mezzo-soprano, Amelia Daigle; baritone, Adam Iannetta; Sarah D’Agnolo Vilella, collaborative pianist. The afternoon’s performance was a collaborative project just over seven years in the making. It was back in 2009 that our three vocalists were first introduced to one another, while studying at the former University of Windsor, School of Music. Since graduation, these three colleagues have gone on to pursue their own individual careers in music performance and live theatre.
Upon completing her Masters in Music Performance and Literature from Western University, mezzo-soprano, Amelia Daigle, continues to gain notoriety throughout much of Ontario as an accomplished performer. In addition to having placed first in the Classical Voice category at Canada’s 45th annual National Music Festival, Amelia took part in Mano Sinistra’s OpéraFest in Toronto earlier this spring.
Soprano, Brianna DeSantis, has maintained a productive performance schedule during the final year of her Masters while at Western University. Performances include the debut of Windsor’s Confidential Musical Theatre Project and the Latin Fever Latin-American Culture Concert with the Windsor Symphony Orchestra. Brianna will be returning to Western University in the fall to begin her Doctorate of Musical Arts.
Now entering the second year of his Doctorate of Musical Arts, baritone, Adam Iannetta, has been a recurring member of Western University’s Opera Workshop for the past three years, including this past Fall’s production of Hansel and Gretel. In addition, Adam continues to be a featured soloist with the Windsor Symphony Orchestra, most recently this past September as part of the French-Canadian folk-music concert series.
Despite their different career paths, these three Windsor alumni continue to keep in close contact with one another, maintaining a strong, professional affiliation and an even stronger


Joyce Gagnon, BMA ’89, BED ‘90

Joyce Gagnon retired from the WECDSB June 2015. She initially taught itinerant music and later Kindergarten while using her musical/performance experience to lead school choir, drama presentations, music mass ministry, talent shows, and school concerts. 
-    She provides music ministry for Good Shepherd Parish with her family…
-    son Adrien (bass/vocals) UofW (BSCS, Music minor 2014 & BEd 2015),
-    daughter, Lisette (vocals) UofW (BMUS [H], Studio Art minor 2016), and
-    daughter Natalie (violin/vocals) St. Anne H.S SSGD 2016.
With family roots in traditional music as vocalist and keyboard player with her husband Gabe and her brother Ron. she has continued to perform throughout her career.  She is currently mandolin player and vocalist for the awarding winning Bluegrass band Winterline and is the current 3rd time Central Canadian 

The members of Winterline including Joyce and Gabe Gagnon

Bluegrass Female Vocalist of the Year (2013, 2014, 2015).

Gabe Gagnon, BMA ’83, BED ‘84

Gabe Gagnon will retire from WECDSB in June 2016.  As Arts Dept. Head at St. Anne High School, he has been teaching Music for 32 years!  He provides music ministry for Good Shepherd Parish with his family.  Gabe has been playing guitar in bands for over 40 years and is acoustic guitarist and vocalist for Winterline which has been awarded (Central Canadian Bluegrass Association 2012 Most Promising Group, 2013 Entertainer, 2014 Entertainer, Vocal Group, Overall Group, 2015 Overall Group, Instrumental Group, Entertainer!  He and his wife Joyce will be touring with Winterline this summer including performances across Northern Ontario and PEI.

Music Therapist Brian Garner is retiring in SeptemberBrian R. Garner, BMT ‘96

As of my birthday on 09/05/16, I officially became a senior citizen here in Canada. I am still Organist/Choir Director at a local church here in Guelph, the position that brought me to this city nine years ago. I am also still serving residents and residents of area localities in the area of music therapy although the latter is getting more difficult for someone who hasn’t driven for the past six and half years.
Since coming to Guelph I have been a part of the Guelph Arts Council for whom I have been a volunteer leading historic walking tours for the past seven years - a gorgeous city that recycles historic buildings rather than knocking them down with a wrecking ball and bulldozer.
I am also a member of the Guelph Kiwanis Music Festival organizing committee. The participants in this music festival aare astounding right across the musical spectrum.

Baritone John HollandJohn Holland, BMus ‘00

Baritone John Holland is currently finishing his PhD in Musicology at York University in Toronto, where his research focuses on Czech opera and Art song. On the opera and oratorio stage, John has been praised for his performances as Figaro in Mozart's Le Nozze di Figaro, Masetto in Mozart’s Don Giovanni, Vodník in Dvořák’s Rusalka, Purkrabi in Dvořák’s Jakobín, Alberich in Wagner’s Der Ring des Nibelungen, and as Bass Soloist in Bach’s St. John Passion, Haydn’s Creation and Lord Nelson Mass, Handel’s Messiah, and Mozart’s Requiem. He has performed at such exotic locales as San Marco in Venice, BachFest in Leipzig, and the Estates Theatre in Prague. The founding president of the Canadian Institute for Czech Music, John is also a respected choral conductor and lecturer, and teaches regularly at the RCM in Toronto. John can be heard this summer as Leporello in Don Giovanni at the Estates Theatre, Prague, and in Wagner's Götterdammerung with the Canadian Opera Company in 2017.

Wayne Irschick piano and violinist Anna Baksheeva Wayne Irschick, BMus '73

Who? Me? Retire? Statistically the government will release a cheque in September to acknowledge my supposed retirement, but retire I shall not.
As Director of Music at Riverside United Church I have introduced a wide bandwidth of musical styles to the choir and congregation. Gregorian chant, both in Latin monophonically and in English homophonically (my harmonization) was greeted favourably. For the Feast of the Transfiguration I composed a dramatic work for speaker, SAB choir, congregational participation, and piano. Some time later I performed another original work based on the mystical text by Dionysius the Areopagite on the theme of the Trinity, the musical language placed somewhere between Olivier Messiaen and Herbert Howells.
My duo partner, Anna Baksheeva, violinist, and I have performed concerts in many seniors' residences in Ottawa. One such establishment loved our work so much that they have offered us a room free of charge to teach in or to put on other complementary presentations. In fact, Anna and I and other interested teachers (mostly Russian) are in the throes of starting a new music school, incorporating the best of European and North American principles and practices in music education.
Just as professors Ed Kovarik and David Palmer – in addition to my Royal Conservatory teachers and mentor Dusi Mura – did much to "shape me and mould me" - I too, now nearing my sixty-fifth year, am always delighted in hearing how my past students have flourished. Come June 20, I am invited to play at one of my student's weddings – and he composed the music for me. Nice.

Music Therapist Aksana Kavaliova-Moussi lives in BahrainAksana Kavaliova-Moussi, BMT ’08

Greetings from Bahrain! It was another busy and fulfilling year. My private music therapy practice continues to grow. I had quite a few presentations here in the Kingdom of Bahrain for the parents and professionals, including at the Untangle Autism conference (it was the first time a music therapist presented during such a big event here!). As a Co-Director of the OCMT- Online Conference for Music Therapy I am happy to see our project growing and connecting music therapists across the globe. This July I am going to Vienna, Austria, to the 10th European Music Therapy Conference. I am going to present on the OCMT as well as participate in a round table of the World Federation of Music Therapy as the Eastern Mediterranean Regional Liaison. Of course, meeting with music therapists from around the world will be so exciting!
One of the most noticeable (for me) achievements this past year was to see my Master’s degree study being published in the Music Therapy Today magazine of the World Federation of Music Therapy ( ).

Carillonneur extraordinaire Gerald MartindaleGerald Martindale, BMA, Musical Arts ‘77

I retired from my position as the Carillonneur of Metropolitan United Church, Toronto in March. Now I play the Exhibition Place, Toronto carillon regularly. In July I will embark on my 19th annual American carillon concert tour with seven engagements in Maryland, Connecticut, Massachusetts, and New York state.
Photo: Exhibition Place carillon.


Kim McInnis is enjoying her musical adventureKim McInnis, BMus ‘11

Since I left Windsor, life has been a whirlwind of musical adventures.  After brief stints in LA and Melbourne, I settled down in Pittsburgh.  By day, I support Estill Voice International, an organization of voice teachers and therapists, as we get ready to release the first book on Jo Estill’s voice research and pedagogical model.  By night, I’m an entertainer at Howl at the Moon piano bar nightclub.  I’m also happy that I get to be creative on new works by co-writing and session singing, and by playing keyboards for a bubblegum rock band Northern Vibe.  Now when I look back and think about my days at UWindsor, I wish I could tell my past-self all the exciting things that we’d be doing just five years after graduation.  For any current music students who are reading this right now: Your hard work will pay off in amazing ways.  Hang in there - ESPECIALLY IN SKILLS CLASS!  I know that harmonic dictation sucks, but it is the single most important skill to your musical future.  Believe in yourself!

Andrea Morosin's daughtersCaroline, Sophie and AliceAndrea Morosin, BA (H), Music & Communication Studies ’03  BED ‘04

I am currently preparing to return to work after a wonderful maternity leave. I am the lead music teacher at Tecumseh Vista Academy - Secondary. We have a large music program and talented group of students and faculty. At home, our family has grown to include our sweet little Alice, who will be one soon. Caroline (4) begins JK this fall and our Sophie (6) just completed her first Kiwanis Festival as a violinist this spring. They all love music! I am still leading music ministry at St. Marks by the Lake and performing for various events. I also continue to do television hosting and interviews for Cogeco TV. My husband Phil, is also a teacher. We love spending our summers cottaging and travelling with our trailer exploring the world with our girls. We will celebrate our 10 year wedding anniversary this summer. We are very thankful for this full, rich life.

Lane Osborne teaches at Guelph Collegiate VI.Lane Osborne, BA(H), Music & History ‘08

I miss music at Windsor more than anything. My time at the School of Music helped set me on my career path nearly immediately. The quality of music education is intimate and unparalleled; I am constantly promoting the school to my current students. I learned pedagogical things at Windsor that have stood the test of time and still play an important role in my job as a secondary music teacher.
I graduated from Windsor in 2008 with a BA in music and history, and proceeded to McMaster University to complete a Master of Arts degree as the recipient of the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada's (SSHRC) grant for my research in musicology. My thesis looked at the effect of international borders on the consumption of music in different countries; I specifically looked at the consumption of Motown music in Windsor during the 1960s.  In 2009, I went to OISE (University of Toronto) and obtained my Bachelor of Education degree.
In 2011, I was hired as an occasional teacher for the Peel District School Board's Regional Arts Program and worked at Mayfield Secondary School and Cawthra Park Secondary School for a year. I was hired by the Upper Grand District School Board in 2012, and I now reside in Guelph where I teach vocal and instrumental music as well as ESL at the Guelph Collegiate Vocational Institute. Our school is very active in Canada's musical community and we hold a very high standard for music education; in the past few years, all of our ensembles have progressed to the Kiwanis Music Festival's provincial competition (OMFA) and MusicFest Nationals where our program has obtained multiple gold standards in performance.
Beyond my commitments to life in the secondary system, I privately instruct voice, piano and guitar, and periodically perform with various cover bands in the Greater Toronto Area. When not performing, reading or writing about music, I simply enjoy life with my irreplaceable family, friends, and beloved shetland sheepdog, Annie.

Tom and Dora OvertonTom and Dora Overton,  BMus ’82, BED ‘83

Tom and I both graduated from Windsor with honours Bachelor of Music degrees in 1982. Our degrees were both in school music. Tom was a trumpet major, and I was a piano/voice major. We also got married May of that year! We both attended the Faculty of Education immediately after, and started our teaching careers in Blind River, Ontario, our baby Christopher in tow.
After six years of teaching, Tom in the secondary sector, and I as an elementary teacher and private piano teacher, we moved back to Essex County. Our daughter was born in Elliott Lake, and was a baby when we moved.
Tom taught Music and was the Arts department head at Sandwich Secondary School until his retirement in 2011. He is still involved with Theatre Kent as musical director and orchestral conductor. I have taught Music (choral, keyboards, and instrumental) and Library at Centennial Central Public School since 1990. I have also sung with the Windsor Symphony Chorus since 1990. I am retiring in three weeks!
In our retirement, Tom and I hope to continue with our musical endeavors, spend time with our kids and two adorable grandchildren, travel, volunteer, and chill at our Point Pelee Home.

Picture Butte High School band unter the baton of Curtis PerrinCurtis Perrin, BMus ‘11

After finishing my Bachelor of Education degree in 2012, I moved to Alberta to begin my teaching career. After spending two years living in Lethbridge and teaching at Picture Butte High School, I accepted the position as Band Director of Crescent Heights High School in Medicine Hat. CHHS is a grade 7-12 school with a great focus on the performing arts. The Senoir High Band traveled to England last year to participate in the Harrogate International Youth Music Festival as one of only 7 international groups that year. I'm looking forward to a long career here, and eager to host any of my fellow alumni if you are ever in the area!

Mark Rocheleau, founder of the Ottawa Wind EnsembleMark Rocheleau, BMus ’83  BED ‘84

The Ottawa Wind Ensemble, founded by Mark Rocheleau, is performing in "Music and Beyond" in Ottawa this July. Music and Beyond is considered to be one of Canada’s major classical music festivals.

Joanne (Dresser) Stover, BMus ‘78, BED ‘80

I've been living in Churchill, MB for 29 years. I started a music program here in 1988, and added a fiddle program ten years ago. A taste of the violin under the direction of the wonderful Arlene Rosznyai inspired me to revisit that instrument, but with the addition of some Metis and east coast music. My students have played as far east as Nova Scotia, and this year we are headed to Alberta for a Metis Cultural Music Fest. Despite our very isolated location, with travel in and out by only air or rail, we've had some pretty adventurous times (and done a lot of fund raising) to sing for Queen Elizabeth on her visit to Winnipeg (we sing our anthem in Cree, French, Inuktitut and English), Prince Charles on the opening of our Wapusk National Park, and most recently, His Excellency David Johnston, as well as opening for Doc Walker, Fred Eaglesmith, and other visiting musicians to Churchill. On our way to Alberta, we are stopping to play at a concert in Saskatchewan with Leahy: The New Generation. We lead an exciting life in our tiny northern town!

Music therapist Sincere TungYee Chun Sincere, Tung, BMT '11

Sincere is an accredited music therapist (MTA) living and working in Hong Kong. He is a member of the Canadian Association for Music Therapy (CAMT) and the Hong Kong Music Therapy Association (HKMTA). In 2011, he graduated from the Honors Bachelor of Music Therapy program at University of Windsor. In 2014 he received a Master degree in Creative Arts Therapies (Music Therapy Option) at Concordia University, Montreal. He has been giving workshops and providing services at various medical facilities and educational facilities in Hong Kong as well as overseas.

Sheila Spence, BMus ‘79

I graduated from the University of Windsor with my Honours Bachelor of Music in 1979!! Scary to think how long ago that is!  I taught vocal/ instrumental/ and general music in the elementary panel from 1981-2011.  I'm happy to say that I still have my hearing intact, from all those Gr.7 and 8 instrumental beginners! 
I retired in June 2011,and I'm totally enjoying my life! I'm playing the trombone again in a local band, and just returned from an amazing 2 week trip to the Amalfi coast and the Abruzzo region of Italy. I'm still very active with cycling and running, which has been a passion of mine for over 20 years.
Looking forward to hearing from some of my classmates, and hoping that everyone is doing well!  Thanks for trying to keep us all connected!