Meet the Players
- Aliya has been playing the violin for 9 years since she was 5, and has been with the NSCE for the past 5 years. Her favourite thing about NSCE is playing a genre of music that isn’t classical. Her favourite NSCE memories are the trips to Bowen Island and last year’s Centennial concert. Other than the violin, she has dabbled in ukulele and also enjoys skiing. She is also with the Royal Conservatory of Music, where she has gained experience in classical violin. Aliya is very grateful for the opportunities that the Senior group has offered.
Nelson joined the NSCE four years ago after watching many of their concerts as a child. He spent three amazing years with Junior Ensemble and has just moved up to the Senior Ensemble this year. His favourite concert with the Ensemble has been IGNITE and he enjoys the fantastic energy of the group. He is an upbeat player and loves the wide variety of music he gets to learn. This year, he went on the Senior Ensemble retreat for the first time and thought it was a blast. Nelson splits his time between sailing and skiing when he’s not playing violin.
- Nicola is an enthusiastic violin player who has been in the NSCE for three years. She grew up in North Vancouver playing classical music since age 5. When she was around 11, she found that she wasn’t enjoying it as much anymore and started looking for a different type of violin music to play. She joined the group after watching her brother, Nelson, play with the group the year before. It looked like so much fun that she wanted to be a part of it. When Nicola isn’t playing violin, she loves to do all sorts of sports like skiing, swimming, and hiking.
- Ursula started playing violin 6 years ago when she was 8, and has been a part of the NSCE for the last 5. This is her first year in the Senior Ensemble, and she is loving it! Ursula is very committed to the group, commuting to the North Shore from her home on Bowen Island several times a week for rehearsals, events and concerts. One of her favourite memories with the Ensemble was playing in a small concert at her school on Bowen with her friends from the Strings and Things group. She is an energetic musician and person, and will hopefully play with the Ensemble for many years to come!
- Naomi has played violin with the NSCE for six years. She had a blast travelling to China with the Senior Ensemble this past spring break and especially enjoyed collaborating with the other musical groups and experiencing the different culture. Last fall, Naomi started a band with three of her friends and has had a lot of fun playing guitar, ukulele, and writing original songs with them. Naomi's favourite part of the NSCE is hanging out with the other musicians and playing a variety of music styles. She is very grateful for the lasting friendships she has made through the ensemble.
- Souna is a passionate musician who started playing violin in 2009 when she was 7 years old in Shanghai, China. After years of private lessons, she realized that she was looking for something more. Five years ago she joined the NSCE, a place where she could connect with other players, make friends and play tunes that were unlike any of the music she’d played before. Not only has she learned many new techniques with the Ensemble, she has learned how to jam with other players. Her advice to young musicians is “Don’t look down on the stage, for the audience is there to see your smile and enthusiasm!”
- Sofie started playing violin when she was five and has been an enthusiastic member of the NSCE for 7 years. She was part of the ensemble's China tour last year; an unforgettable trip filled with amazing people, places, and theatres. Other highlights have been the annual Galiano tour, and participating in the French TV talent show Galala. Sofie is also passionate about biathlon, running, mountain biking, swimming, and sleeping in. She's very grateful for the tireless effort put in by Claude, Jay, and the other directors over the years, and she's excited for another great season!
- Arley has returned this year to the NSCE to play Piano and Accordion. He has been playing with the group for five seasons, and has travelled with them on the Scotland and China tours. Arley is currently studying classical piano at Capilano University and is enjoying the challenges that it brings. As a musician, he is always looking for ways to bring out accompanying harmonies in the group, and learning interesting songs on accordion.
- Bronwen started playing violin when she was 11 years old, and has played with the NSCE for six years. This is her third year playing with the Senior group. Her time with the Ensemble has taught her valuable lessons about music and performance, which she has been able to draw upon in other musical pursuits. In addition to violin, she plays the guitar, ukulele and piano and last year, she started a band called ‘Quite Like This’ with a fellow NSCE friend and a couple of other musicians. Bronwen really enjoys the music she plays with the Ensemble and values the many friendships she has made.
- Veronica is in her seventh year playing with the NSCE. She was a member of the China tour last spring and had an incredible time performing and exploring with the group. She was in the Junior Ensemble when they played on “Galala”, a televised French Canadian talent show and when they did the “IGNITE” - Vancouver Youth Music Festival in 2015 and 2016. Veronica is an enthusiastic musician who loves the exciting energy of the group and the interaction between the players, especially while performing.
- Maya started playing violin when she was four years old, joining the NSCE seven years ago. This is her third year in the Senior ensemble. Her favourite experiences include the annual performances on Galiano Island and the life-changing tour to China. She is a talented musician who sings and plays several instruments including the flute, violin, ukulele, guitar and slide whistle. Maya loves everything about the NSCE; the repertoire, the challenges and all the friends she's made.