The Burning Bridge String Quartet

The Venuti String Quartet

Shannon Knights

Viola

Shannon Knights is a graduate of The Glenn Gould School of Music and McGill University. She’s studied with teachers such as Steven Dann, Andre Roy and Roberto Diaz. Shannon was a member of The Quebec Symphony for 4 years and while residing there joined the Cartier Quartet. You can see Shannon play in and around Toronto in such groups as The Toronto Symphony, The Canadian Opera Company, The National Ballet Orchestra and Tafelmusik.

Lydia Munchinsky

Cello

Cellist Lydia Munchinsky, nee Helsdon, is a freelance performer and teacher currently residing in Toronto. Originally from Aylmer Ontario, she came to Toronto in 2000 to study cello with Simon Fryer and piano with Peter Longworth at The Glenn Gould School. Since completing the Performance Diploma Program, Lydia has enjoyed many of the diverse musical opportunities this city has to offer. Some of those include playing for music theatre companies Stage West and Theatre Aquarius, the new music ensemble Array, electric violinist Dr. Draw, and chamber folk group Ozere. She has premiered solo cello and chamber music works by a number of Toronto and Austrian composers and gives recitals regularly, some of which have been recorded by CBC and CIUT radio. Before having a baby in July 2013, (born the same day as Prince George), Lydia also taught for Sistema Toronto in Parkdale.

Before moving to Toronto, Lydia studied piano with Dorothy Jones and Karen Rowell, and cello with Tim Halliday, Amanda Keesmaat and Julia MacGregor. She performed in Australia, Korea and Chicago at the ages of ten, twelve and fourteen and completed her ARCT (Associate of the Royal Conservatory of Toronto) in performance for both piano and cello before attending her post secondary studies. The year after she finished high school she also traveled to Europe for five months. While there she spent one term at l’Abri, an International Christian Study and Philosophy Centre, and backpacked across Europe for two months with her cello. While in Switzerland, she also met her husband, Marty. Since January of 2014, Lydia has toured the continent with Quartetto Gelato, an experience for which she is extremely grateful. After all, her daughter Arya, who often joins them on tour, is their biggest fan!

 

Drew Jurecka

Violin

Drew Jurecka is an accomplished violinist who is comfortable in many genres. Trained classically, he studied with Lorand Fenyves during his teens and with David Updegraff at the Cleveland Institute of Music for his undergraduate degree. Drew has spent the last ten years playing jazz, pop, rock and other contemporary styles in Toronto. Though violin is his primary instrument, he also works frequently as a performer and recording sideman on viola, saxophone, clarinet and mandolin.

Rebekah Wolkstein

Violin

Celebrated for her stunning virtuosity, nuance and broad musical versatility, Wisconsin-born violinist, Rebekah Wolkstein has established a strong presence on the Toronto music scene.

As a classical violinist, Rebekah has performed and toured extensively with the Toronto Symphony Orchestra, The National Ballet of Canada, The Canadian Opera Company, and in recitals with famous baritone, Russell Braun.

An active studio musician, Rebekah is also at home playing folk, klezmer, pop, latin, and jazz and can be heard on numerous recordings.  She has also performed and collaborated on theatre productions including award-winning shows with playwright/actress, Tracey Erin Smith.

Aside from her active performing career, Rebekah holds a doctorate in violin performance from the University of Toronto as well as degrees in violin from the Cleveland Institute of Music.

Rebekah is a member of the Payadora Tango Ensemble which has performed sold-out shows at the St Lawrence Centre for the Arts, Four Series Centre World Music Series and Toronto Music Festival.

Rebekah also enjoys performing on her hardanger fiddle, a beautiful and resonant nine-string Norwegian instrument.

The Venuti String Quartet

Shannon Knights

Viola

Shannon Knights is a graduate of The Glenn Gould School of Music and McGill University. She’s studied with teachers such as Steven Dann, Andre Roy and Roberto Diaz. Shannon was a member of The Quebec Symphony for 4 years and while residing there joined the Cartier Quartet. You can see Shannon play in and around Toronto in such groups as The Toronto Symphony, The Canadian Opera Company, The National Ballet Orchestra and Tafelmusik.

Lydia Munchinsky

Cello

Cellist Lydia Munchinsky, nee Helsdon, is a freelance performer and teacher currently residing in Toronto. Originally from Aylmer Ontario, she came to Toronto in 2000 to study cello with Simon Fryer and piano with Peter Longworth at The Glenn Gould School. Since completing the Performance Diploma Program, Lydia has enjoyed many of the diverse musical opportunities this city has to offer. Some of those include playing for music theatre companies Stage West and Theatre Aquarius, the new music ensemble Array, electric violinist Dr. Draw, and chamber folk group Ozere. She has premiered solo cello and chamber music works by a number of Toronto and Austrian composers and gives recitals regularly, some of which have been recorded by CBC and CIUT radio. Before having a baby in July 2013, (born the same day as Prince George), Lydia also taught for Sistema Toronto in Parkdale.

Before moving to Toronto, Lydia studied piano with Dorothy Jones and Karen Rowell, and cello with Tim Halliday, Amanda Keesmaat and Julia MacGregor. She performed in Australia, Korea and Chicago at the ages of ten, twelve and fourteen and completed her ARCT (Associate of the Royal Conservatory of Toronto) in performance for both piano and cello before attending her post secondary studies. The year after she finished high school she also traveled to Europe for five months. While there she spent one term at l’Abri, an International Christian Study and Philosophy Centre, and backpacked across Europe for two months with her cello. While in Switzerland, she also met her husband, Marty. Since January of 2014, Lydia has toured the continent with Quartetto Gelato, an experience for which she is extremely grateful. After all, her daughter Arya, who often joins them on tour, is their biggest fan!

 

Drew Jurecka

Violin

Drew Jurecka is an accomplished violinist who is comfortable in many genres. Trained classically, he studied with Lorand Fenyves during his teens and with David Updegraff at the Cleveland Institute of Music for his undergraduate degree. Drew has spent the last ten years playing jazz, pop, rock and other contemporary styles in Toronto. Though violin is his primary instrument, he also works frequently as a performer and recording sideman on viola, saxophone, clarinet and mandolin.

Rebekah Wolkstein

Violin

Celebrated for her stunning virtuosity, nuance and broad musical versatility, Wisconsin-born violinist, Rebekah Wolkstein has established a strong presence on the Toronto music scene.

As a classical violinist, Rebekah has performed and toured extensively with the Toronto Symphony Orchestra, The National Ballet of Canada, The Canadian Opera Company, and in recitals with famous baritone, Russell Braun.

An active studio musician, Rebekah is also at home playing folk, klezmer, pop, latin, and jazz and can be heard on numerous recordings.  She has also performed and collaborated on theatre productions including award-winning shows with playwright/actress, Tracey Erin Smith.

Aside from her active performing career, Rebekah holds a doctorate in violin performance from the University of Toronto as well as degrees in violin from the Cleveland Institute of Music.

Rebekah is a member of the Payadora Tango Ensemble which has performed sold-out shows at the St Lawrence Centre for the Arts, Four Series Centre World Music Series and Toronto Music Festival.

Rebekah also enjoys performing on her hardanger fiddle, a beautiful and resonant nine-string Norwegian instrument.

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