Minds and Music

The Minds and Music concert series features the finest classical music performed by renowned musicians and put into a contemporary context through informal lectures by faculty and artists about the music, its past, and how it relates to the present.

This series has been made possible through the Reichwald German Studies Fund, with support from the Faculty of Creative and Critical Studies (FCCS) and the Department of Economics, Philosophy and Political Science in the Irving. K Barber Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences.

RECENT Concert


When: Wednesday, March 1, 2023 at 1 p.m. – 2:15 p.m.

Where: University Centre Ballroom (UNC 200), UBC Okanagan 3272 University Way

Concert description:

This is a chamber music recital with comments on the repertoire by the musicians themselves, in the tradition of Minds and Music lunch time events delivered prior to the COVID-19 pandemic. The concert on March 1 is exceptional in two more ways: the piano and violin recital will feature musicians from the same family, and acts as a prelude to the Roger Gale Symposium, which will feature interdisciplinary presentations on the issues surrounding the international response to Russia’s war in Ukraine. as such, it is very fitting that the music chosen by the musicians addresses the human condition – the inner turmoil of feelings and yearnings, expressed at different times of upheaval and unrest in pieces by Beethoven, Chausson and Schumann.

This event has passed.

Canadian-born violinist Gabrielle Després is the winner of numerous competitions, most recently first prize in 2022 Juilliard Concerto Competition, second prize in the 2022 Washington International String Competition, first prize in the 2020 Irving M. Klein International String Competition and second prize in the 2021 Shean Strings Competition. She was included in CBC’s list of 30 Hot Canadian Classical Musicians under 30 for 2020 and in 2022, she was selected as one of the recipients of the Sylva Gelber Music Foundation award.

From a young age, she has competed nationally, winning top prizes in the Canadian Music Competition in both violin and piano. In 2016, she placed second on Radio-Canada’s nationwide television show, “Virtuose.” As a soloist, she has performed with the Chamber Orchestra of Edmonton and the Edmonton Symphony Orchestra. In 2021, she served as concertmaster of the Juilliard Orchestra, performing Strauss’ Ein Heldenleben under the baton of Sir Antonio Pappano. Most recently, Gabrielle performed the Korngold Violin Concerto in her debut as soloist with the Juilliard Orchestra.

An avid chamber musician, she recently performed with the Jupiter Symphony Chamber Players in NYC and in the Music in the Vineyards festival. Passionate about community engagement, Gabrielle performed as a Gluck Community Engagement Fellow throughout 2021-2022, working to create interactive programs that merge music and theatre to share across various hospitals and nursing homes throughout New York City.

Gabrielle received a Bachelor of Music at the Juilliard School where she studied with Masao Kawasaki and Joseph Lin. She also studied the baroque violin under the direction of Robert Mealy in 2021. She returned to Juilliard in the fall as a proud recipient of the Kovner Fellowship as she begins her pursuit of a Master of Music, studying with Catherine Cho and Donald Weilerstein. Gabrielle has spent her summers studying at the Orford Summer Music Academy, Morningside Music Bridge, the Casalmaggiore International Music Festival, the Domaine Forget de Charlevoix International Music Academy, the Aspen Music Festival, and Kneisel Hall.

Gabrielle currently plays on a 1790 Giuseppe and Antonio Gagliano of Naples violin, generously on loan from the Brobst Violin Shop. She gratefully acknowledges the generosity of the Alberta Foundation for the Arts, the Anne Burrows Music Foundation and the Edmonton Community Foundation in supporting her education.

Patricia Tao leads an active life as a performer, teacher, and concert organizer. On completion of her studies in Harvard University, Indiana University, and Stony Brook University, she performed throughout the U.S. and Europe for ten years with the award-winning Guild Trio (Joanne Rile Management), and as a soloist, she toured the U.S. for Columbia Artists’ Community Concert series and overseas as an Artistic Ambassador for the USIA. She also performed for many years with Trio Voce (Jasmine Lin, violin, Marina Hoover, cello), releasing two critically acclaimed CDs. Trio Voce’s live performances were broadcast frequently on Chicago’s classical music station, WFMT.

Now in her 15th year as Artistic Director of the Edmonton Chamber Music Society’s Summer Solstice Music Festival, Dr. Tao programs innovative concerts and collaborates with some of North America’s most distinguished soloists and chamber musicians. For nearly twenty years, she has promoted community outreach programs through the Hear’s to Your Health Concerts at the University of Alberta medical school. She is thrilled to contribute to the Kelowna cultural arts community in her role as Artistic Director of Chamber Music Kelowna.

Dr. Tao has given master classes in North America, Europe and Asia. She was an Artist-in-Resident at the University of Virginia for two years, taught at Western Washington University, and was on the faculty at the University of Alberta from 2002, Her distinguished teachers include Leonard Shure, Gyorgy Sebok, and Gilbert Kalish in piano, and Leon Fleisher, Bernard Greenhouse and Gilbert Kalish in chamber music. She retired in 2022 is Professor Emerita at the University of Alberta.


  • Beethoven Sonata No. 8 in G major, op. 30, no. 3
  • Chausson Poème for violin and piano (originally with orchestra)
  • Schumann Sonata in a minor, op 105

Parking: View the Campus Parking Map. No spots are guaranteed or reserved. There is a possibility that there will not be spots available, depending on the time of day.

Sponsored by: 

  • Irving K. Barber Faculty of Arts and Social Sciences, Department of Economics, Philosophy & Political Science and the Chamber Music Kelowna Society.


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Students & Musicians

Want to perform in a concert? Need a place to practice your music? Have questions or comments about the concerts? For more information about this series, please contact:

Dr. Manuela Ungureanu
Associate Professor, Philosophy
The University of British Columbia, Okanagan Campus
Tel: 250.807.9375
Email: manuela.ungureanu@ubc.ca

Past Concerts

The inaugural Minds and Music concert at UBC Okanagan took place on January 27, 2006. The idea was philosophy professor Manuela Ungureanu’s, who brought in sell-out performers La Pieta to play a lunchtime concert, with faculty members from across UBCO speaking about each piece of music. Dr. Ungureanu still serves as the primary coordinator of each Minds and Music event, with help from various faculty, students, staff, and members of the community.

Minds and Music Gallery

March 28 — Eeva-Maria Kopp and Arnold Draper 
Human Voice: Language and the Powers of Music
A classical music concert featuring works from Jean Sibelius, Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, Franz Schubert, Frédéric Chopin, and Richard Strauss.

April 3 — The Zodiac Trio
Romantic Soul: A Modern Day Performance with the Zodiac Trio
In this program dedicated to Romanticism, the ensemble look deep into one of the most emotional periods of classical music, with a varied range of works from solo piano to the complete clarinet-violin-piano trio.

March 27 — Dr. Bernard McDonald and Suzanne Lommler
Is Music A Language of Emotions?
Bernard McDonald and Suzanne Lommler of Simpson College in West Des Moines, IA pair in this exciting program from the mezzo soprano repertoire, engaging students and audience alike with questions about the subtle workings of musical composition intended to excite, evoke, remind and recreate emotions and stories.

November 20 — Hearts, Minds and Music
A classical music concert featuring works by Beethoven and Debussy, performed by UBC students Yun-Han Wang and Yun-Lin Wang, with special guest Rosemary Thomson, Music Director for the Okanagan Symphony Orchestra.

January 19 — Ian Parker
Is music a language? If so, who is “talking” and what is the message. Pianist Ian Parker addresses those questions.

March 20 — My Kind of Karma
Alternative Folk/Rock/Reggae band coming out of Kelowna BC. Band consists of Garrett Scatterty (Vox & Guitar), Isaac Balson (Ukulele & Banjo), James Hockin (Bass) and Taylor Gross (Drums).

March 20 — Classical Piano by UBC students



February 3 and 4 — Ian Parker
Fantasies of High(-tech) Culture and…The Piano. Q&A and Smartpiano with Ian Parker.

March 8 — Daniel Bolshoy
Performing works by Eduardo Sainz de la Maza, Agustin Barrios, Sergio Assad and Michael Karmon followed by a guitar master class with a student from Penticton High School.

February 27 — Okanagan Symphony Orchestra and director Rosemary Thomson
A public rehearsal with the Okanagan Symphony Orchestra and director Rosemary Thomson as they perform Symphony No. 36 in C Major, K. 425 “Linz”.

January 23 — Alan Rinehart
From the Old World to the New. Music from the late 19th century romantic masters Tarrega and Albeniz, followed by a journey to Latin America where the works of Villa Lobos and Ponce lead to delightful tango inspired music of the present day by Maximo Pujol.

January 18 — Montreal Guitar Trio
The Year of the Guitar Concert #2: Spain and Latin America Through Their Guitar Repetoire.


January 11 — Chamber Music Kelowna
A new musical concept, The Schumann Letters has been enticing audiences with a unique combination of storytelling, piano music and song. Drawn from thousands of historic letters, this show explores Schumann’s life, love and music by delicately intertwining narration with Schumann’s original compositions. The Schumann Letters is written and narrated by JUNO/GEMINI winner Colin Fox, with Michael Kim, piano and Susan Gilmour Bailey, soprano.

November 28 — Alan Rinehart
Early Spanish guitar music from the 16th to early 19th century including the earliest printed sources by Milan, Narvaez and Mudarra through the Baroque guitarists Santiago de Murcia and Gaspar Sanz, finishing with the classical period masters Fernando Sor and Dionisio Aguado.

April 25 — Chamber Music Kelowna
Minds, Music and .. Mmmmmm! Classical music matching post-modern wines, meshed with playfully smart commentary (19+).


March 1 — Okanagan Symphony Orchestra and director Rosemary Thomson
Melodic Spirits with guest violinist Yi-Jia Suzanne Hou. Hou is the first ever violinist in history to capture 3 Gold Medals with unanimous decisions at 3 International Violin Competitions. Featuring melody work by Beethoven, Mozart and Dvorak.

March 1 — Okanagan Symphony Orchestra
The Orchestra at the Movies. Hear some of the greatest movie music ever written. Featuring Melissa Wilmot, bringing the Red Violin to life.

November 29 — Flicker Arts Collaboratory and the Orchid Ensemble
Gold Mountain Dream. This collaboration between the Flicker Arts Collaboratory and the Orchid Ensemble explores the themes of Chinese Diaspora and culture through interactive media arts, live music and spoken word, and is backed by life-stories collected from numerous insightful interviews from different generations of Chinese Canadians. It starts with BC’s Chinese community but expresses a shared experience of all immigrants from different cultures, acting as a bridge between communities.

November 17 — Celso Machado
The Minds and Music series and the Latin American studies program organize an afternoon of Brazilian music performed by the internationally renowned recording artist Celso Machado.

October 18 — R. Murray Schafer
Internationally renowned Canadian composer R. Murray Schafer visits campus to discuss The Falcon’s Trumpet, his current collaboration with the Okanagan Symphony Orchestra and Ballet Kelowna, as well as how theory and practice co-exists for artists.

February 12 and 13 — Marcel A. Desautels Faculty of Music, University of Manitoba
Recital and Masterclass Performance. With Mel Braun (baritone), Robert MacLaren (tenor) and Laura Loewen (pianist). The Master Class performance featured pupils of Alexandra Babbel taught by members from the Marcel A. Desautels Faculty of Music

February 8 — Shannon Mercer from the Queen of Puddings Music Theatre
Love Songs. In a spectacular virtuosic tour de force, solo female singer Shannon Mercer of the Queen of Puddings Music Theatre Company shares compositions selected by award-winning composer Ana Sokolovic. Love Songsfeatures some of Sokolovic’s favourite poems — from a variety of languages — set to music. Love Songs premiered in Toronto in March 2008 at the Richard Bradshaw Amphitheatre of the Canadian Opera Company, followed by a performance at Harbourfront Centre’s “What is Classical?” festival.

January 20 — Okanagan Symphony Orchestra featuring UBC Opera Ensemble
Viennese Waltz. This traditional Viennese concert rehearsal showcased arias and ensembles from the magical operettas of Lehar and Strauss featuring The Merry Widow and Die Fledermaus, as well as the great song tributes to Vienna.

October 27 — Robert Silverman
Recognized as one of Canada’s premiere pianists, Robert Silverman has reached a level of musical and technical authority that can only be accomplished after years of deep commitment to the instrument. Silverman was at UBC’s Okanagan campus to perform a number of Beethoven’s sonatas. The concert was free and open to the public.

September 30 — Hilary Peach
Hilary Peach is a writer, audio poet, recording artist, arts activist, and producer. Hilary Peach was in Kelowna at the The Streaming Cafeperforming selections from her standing repertoire as well as new works.

September 17 — Igor Saavedra
Chilean Jazz bassist Igor Saavedra started playing the bass in 1988, at the age of 22. From then he started an impressive and completely self-taught career. Immediately following the performance, a reception was be held for the Latin American Studies Program and all international students.

November 20— Okanagan Symphony Orchestra
The OSO rehearse Pulitzer Prize winner Michael Colgrass’ Schubert’s Birds and Mozart’s great Concerto for Harp and Flute. Guest artists Heidi Krutzen and Lorna McGhee will be on hand to participate in this performance.

September 29— Robert Bringhurst
Celebrated poets Jan Zwicky and Robert Bringhurst read from their work and spoke on polyphony as a way of thinking. The event included a number of illustrative musical examples, as well as performances of multi-voiced poetry and prose.

October 15— Daniel Bolshoy
Pieces performed included Latin American and Spanish composers such as Agust n Barrios Mangore, Eduardo Sainz de la Maza, Ruben Seroussi and an homage to Catalan composer Federico Mompou i Dencausse.

March 31— UBC Okanagan Jazz Collective
The UBC Okanagan Jazz Collective put on their first performance in the Student Service Centre at the UBC Okanagan campus. The UBC Okanagan Jazz Collective — a group of student performers — take the audience on a journey through all the major historical periods in North American Jazz throughout the 20th century.

March 25 — Jenaviève Moore
Okanagan soprano Jenaviève Moore is accompanied by renowned local pianist Roslyn Frantz in this UBC Okanagan Minds and Music Series free public presentation. Moore grew up in Oliver, B.C.

January 30 — Okanagan Symphony Orchestra feat. James Campbell
The Okanagan Symphony Orchestra rehearses their Inspirations concert programme at UBC Okanagan in the Student Service Centre theatre on campus. In these rehearsal performances Canada’s premiere clarinet virtuoso James Campbell joined the symphony to perform one of the most beautiful and perfect works ever written, Mozart’s Clarinet Concerto.

January 22 — Chamber Music Kelowna featuring The Gryphon Trio and James Campbell
Chamber Music Kelowna and UBC Okanagan present a fascinating lecture and demonstration of synesthesia — the remarkable link between art, science, music, colour, and the history behind a work that is arguably the 20th Century’s greatest piece of chamber music, Messiaen’s Quartet for the End of Time”.

November 12— Tracy Fehr
Women in Poetry and Song: The Public and Private Lives of Powerful Women in Arts. A look at passionate women of the song, women who created the song, and women who wrote the poetry — women compelled to remain in the private, bound by their own convictions or by social conventions, and women who ventured into the public, the largely male-dominated world of art.

October 18— Ed Henderson
Workshop on Latin-American Choir Music. Ed Henderson has years of experience and success in film, theater, concerts and recording as producer, arranger/orchestrator, composer, guitarist and music director. His success has been noted with many awards: a Juno for El Camino Real (Ancient Cultures), a Jesse for outstanding musical direction of “When the Rains Come,” a Dora for outstanding music direction for Pump Boys and Dinettes as well as an award from the Cannes Festival for the outstanding commercial he composed, “Stamp Out Cold Feet”.

October 15— Olga Osipova
Jazz from a European Perspective: A Cross-Cultural Dialogue. The workshop included historic information about jazz in Europe and its influences on European music and provide perspective on how European music, as well, continues to influence some modern jazz forms.

September 17— Robert Silverman
Painting and Poetry in Piano Music. In this unique Minds & Music presentation, Silverman’s powerful yet romantic keyboard performance gains new depth through commentary on classical paintings and poetry.

April 4— Okanagan Symphony Orchestra
Awakenings. The workshop included: Elgar (Three Bavarian Dances), Vaughan Williams (The Lark Ascending) and Smetana (Vltava)

March 2— Angele Dubeau
La Pieta. Acclaimed violinist Angèle Dubeau and the all-female string ensemble La Pietà perform at Kelowna’s First Lutheran Church in UBC Okanagan’s Minds and Music series.

February 14— Dawn Mussellam and Arnold Draper
Music to Stir the Heart.

January 23— Daniel Bolshoy
Daniel Bolshoy brings his ideas and his classical guitar to the UBC Okanagan campus. Bolshoy teaches guitar at Concordia University in Montreal and regularly offers master classes to guitar societies and educational institutions internationally. He also frequently performs outreach and educational concerts for young people.

November 30— Gala Youth Children’s Choir
Gala Youth Children’s Choir Christmas Concert.

November 19— Nancy Argenta.
Nancy Argenta in concert with Sylvain Bergeron and Luc Beausejour, Baroque Program.

November 13— The Gryphon Trio
The Gryphon Trio’s first appearance at UBC Okanagan. Based in Toronto, the Trio tours regularly throughout Canada and the United States, as well as internationally. To date, it has performed in Finland, Germany, France, Belgium, Mexico, Russia, Poland, Greece and Egypt.

October 16— Vancouver Opera Touring Ensemble
The Barber of Barkerville. Adapted from one of the world’s most popular operas, Rossini’s comic masterpiece The Barber of Barkerville has been relocated to BC’s historic Barkerville during the exciting Gold Rush. Consisting of four rising young Canadian opera singers, a pianist and a stage manager, the Vancouver Opera Touring Ensemble travels throughout British Columbia, performing on stage and in schools.

September 12— Yamabiko Taiko
Taiko is the Japanese word for large drum. Yamabiko translates from Japanese as ‘mountain echo,’ reflecting the group’s Okanagan home. Together they form one of the Okanagan’s most exciting and powerful drumming groups. This group of drummers has performed throughout British Columbia for the past four years, including as the opening act for three sold out performances of the Peking Acrobats in the Vernon Winter Carnival. Yamabiko has recently been recognized for their cultural contribution from the National Association of Japanese Canadian Endowment Fund.

April 3— The Okanagan Festival Singers of Kelowna and AURA Chamber Choir of Vernon
Handel’s Israel in Egypt. The Okanagan Festival Singers of Kelowna (Director Leroy Wiens) and AURA Chamber Choir of Vernon (Director Imant Raminsh) presented a joint rehearsal of Handel’s Israel in Egypt. This rehearsal was a preview to the Okanagan Festival Singers’ special 20th-anniversary concert.

March 6— UBC Symphonic Wind Ensemble
After recently returning from an exciting 10-day tour of Taiwan and Hong Kong, The Symphonic Wind Ensemble perform in a special concert at UBC Okanagan.

February 15— Stu Goldberg
Jazz Improvisations from Bach to Goldberg.

February 9— Capilano College Singers
Lars Kaario directed the Capilano College Singers in a matinee performance at UBC Okanagan. The Capilano College Singers have been invited to sing throughout the province of British Columbia, giving concerts and workshops. They performed at the Association of Canadian Choral Conductors’ 1996 National Symposium in Quebec City and toured Germany, Austria and the Czech Republic in the summer of 2005.

January 15— Ben Heppner Master Class
Dramatic tenor Ben Heppner — one of the world’s masters — led a master class with the Okanagan’s up-and-coming vocal talents in an unique, interactive presentation at Kelowna’s Rotary Centre for the Arts.

January 11— Okanagan Symphony Orchestra
Preparing for an upcoming concert series with conductor Pierre Simard in Vernon, Kelowna and Penticton, the symphony’s rehearsal at UBC Okanagan included J.S. Bach’s Concerto #3 with harpsichord continuo.

December 1— Kelowna Community Music School Faculty Quartet

November 10— UBC School of Music and the Conservatorio “G.F. Ghedini” di Cuneo, Un Ponte Musicale
Music Bridge. In 2015, two UBC students were selected to travel to Italy to form a quintet with students from the Cuneo Conservatory. Masterclasses, rehearsals and chamber music performances took place in the Cuneo, Piedmont and Turin areas during the Olympic Games.

October 26— Okanagan Symphony Orchestra
The symphony held a public rehearsal workshop for Magnificent Mozart.

September 28— Joe Trio

April 28— Pierre Simard (conductor), Nadya Blanchette (singer), Denis Letourneau (violinist) and Mihai Ungureanu (pianist)
The Voice of Mozart. Featuring works for violin, voice and piano by W. A. Mozart, with expert commentary by Pierre Simard, resident conductor of the Calgary Symphony.

April 4— Vancouver Opera Ensemble
The Vancouver Opera Touring Ensemble play music spanning three centuries in The World of Opera (in 45 Minutes).

February 10— Okanagan Symphony Orchestra

January 27— La Pieta
In their debut concert, La Pietà is an all-female string ensemble led by Angele Dubeau featured some of Canada’s finest female musicians..