The sweet melody of live piano music swept over the audience during the first of two performances at the Knox United Church in Castor on Nov. 21.
It was the first in-person event held at the church since the onset of the pandemic in the early part of 2020.
While evidence of the pandemic remained — participants were required to wear masks and show their vaccine cards at the door — the atmosphere of attending a live event again could not be missed.
The 25 audience members in attendance were on hand to listen to the musical prowess of Dr. Roger Admiral, a Canadian pianist who has played with the Victoria Symphony Orchestra and the Edmonton-based UltraViolet Ensemble, amidst other groups.
Admiral is also a member of faculty at the University of Alberta, Augustana Campus, where he teaches applied music, specializing in works from the 17th to 21st centuries.
For the recital in Castor, Admiral played ‘Songs of Vienna,’ music composed by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, Franz Schubert, and Johannes Brahms.
Joining Admiral from the Augustana campus for the performance was guest-artist Nicole Brooks, a Canadian soprano opera singer who has performed in multiple shows in both Vancouver and Edmonton.
Brooks teaches Applied Music in voice at the Augustana Campus.
With the restrictions in place amid the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, audience capacity for the performance was capped at 25 people.
Due to the response from the community, a second performance was added, immediately after the first the first, which ended up having 18 people.
There was no cost to attend the recital, but donations were being collected for the Castor Library in the memory of Ardena Zinger, a “community builder” according to Ardelle Ries, who introduced Dr. Admiral and Brooks.
Funds raised will go towards the library renovation project, the first phase of which will be to install a more accessible washroom facility in the building.