Vif Quartet @ The Blue Chair Café – July 22nd

The Vif String Quartet is excited to be performing at The Blue Chair Café on July 22nd, and you are invited to join us! The Blue Chair is known for their live music and fantastic menu (prepared with local ingredients when possible). We will be playing during their famous brunch, so come out and enjoy some delicious food whilst listening to some tunes. As always, we will be performing a mixture of classical, popular, jazz, and folk, and will be open to requests as well.

Vif Quartet @ The Blue Chair Café
9624 – 76 Avenue, Edmonton
Sunday July 22nd, 10:00 am – 2:00 pm
https://www.facebook.com/VifStringQuartet#!/events/201819239941067/?context=create
http://bluechair.ca/events/vif-string-quartet/

Vif Violinist at Carnegie Hall!

Vif’s amazing first violinist, Neda, is performing at Carnegie Hall tonight, along with the Edmonton Symphony Orchestra! Every year, Carnegie Hall hosts Spring For Music, a festival of six concerts by North American orchestras performing creative, stimulating, and adventurous programs. The ESO was selected to perform in this year’s festival – a great way to celebrate the orchestra’s 60th anniversary. Since they are the only Canadian group in the festival, the ESO decided to represent this country’s talent by playing pieces written by Canadian composers and inviting Edmonton-grown soloists to share the stage. Good luck to Neda and the ESO!

Spring Greetings!

Despite what the weather here in Edmonton might indicate, spring has sprung and summer is just around the corner. That means Vif is in full planning mode with couples, gearing up for summer nuptials. Some of the highlights we’re looking forward to so far are playing some newly-acquired Elvis arrangements, a black-tie cocktail hour at the fabulous Art Gallery of Alberta, a brand new Vif arrangement of “Lizzie on Top of the World” from the film Pride and Prejudice, and an outdoor ceremony at the gorgeous Hastings Lake Gardens. We are filling up but still have a few summer and fall 2012 openings if you’re quick!

Vif also recently had a photoshoot with the amazing Alistair Henning, which you can watch for in the coming months.

In the meantime, happy Easter, Passover, and Vesākha from Vif!

Tribute to Etta James

The music world lost a legend last week. Etta James could sing the blues like nobody’s business, and inspired so many younger artists. Here’s our tribute to her – our quartet arrangement of James’ signature tune “At Last”.


104 Underground – an operascape

UPDATE: 104 Underground was lots of fun and gave some unsuspecting LRT travelers a bit of evening entertainment (which, of course, adds to the fun). Check out the Edmonton Journal’s take on the event, and Alberta Primetime’s as well.

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Imagine sitting in an LRT station, waiting for the next train, when you suddenly become a witness to… opera?

That is exactly what Mercury Opera will be doing on the evening of Friday November 25th, at ETS‘s Enterprise Square/Bay Station, and Vif is excited to be taking part. “104 Underground – an operascape” is a unique installation combining some of opera’s greatest hits specially arranged and sung by a quartet of sopranos accompanied by Vif, with costumes by extraordinary local fashion designer Natasha Lazarovic of Temna Fialka.

From 6-8pm, before the LRT station becomes alive with the sound of music, you can sample local fare at host pods along Downtown’s 104th Street Promenade where audience members are offered a selection of beverages, wines  beer and appetizers sponsored by local businesses. Tickets to this portion are $25.

Around 8:00, begin descending into the depths of the underground via the 104th Street entrance into Enterprise Square/Bay Station. The performance begins on the platform when the 8:15pm train pulls into the station. The only ticket you’ll need for this is a single ETS fare – $2.85.

Click here for more event information. We hope to see you then!

A Truly ‘Thrilling’ Wedding

Recently, our quartet played at a wedding ceremony… with a twist. When the bride let me know she wanted us to play Michael Jackson’s “Thriller” during the bridal party’s entrance, and Guns n Roses “Sweet Child of Mine” during her entrance, I got the feeling this would be a wedding to remember. On the big day, after we finished up the prelude music (Beatles, Van Morrision, and other popular tunes, as requested), I’ll admit I was a little nervous to begin “Thriller”. What would the guests think? Would it seem awkward? Nevertheless, we went for it and started the first chords. After a few measures, I saw the groom and groomsmen out of the corner of my eye… walking in like zombies! Once they were in place, the bridesmaids were next. Sure enough, they danced their way down the aisle in excellent Michael Jackson style. I thought it was fantastic, and much to my relief, so did the guests – they were cheering the whole time. Let’s just say that the bride put her personal stamp on the classic bride processional with “Sweet Child of Mine”, and that it was a wonderful wedding that I will never forget. To the newlyweds – congrats and kudos for celebrating in your own way!

Wedding Essentials 101

Well, we’re in the middle of wedding season, and I’m being reminded once again of the importance of coming armed & prepared! Here’s my list of essentials to bring to weddings (along with my instrument, of course!).

1. Heavy duty music stand. To withstand potential wind and not blow away during outdoor ceremonies.

2. Clothes pegs/ paper clips. To keep music in place in the event of afore-mentioned wind)

3. Pencil. To mark any last-minute changes or new cues to watch for from the officiant.

4. Dress in layers. Whether it’s an indoor or outdoor venue, you never know how much or little the sun and/or air conditioning will or will not be giving full power.

5. Flexibility and sense of humour. Even the most well-organized wedding can have a hiccup or two, so keeping an eye out to perhaps notice if the pen to sign of the register is missing, or if the unity candles are taking an extra minute to light, and continuing to serenely play music to keep the flow is, to me, a wedding essential.

Adventurous Venues and Tunes

Summer is just around the corner (at least, that’s what I keep telling myself!), and Vif is looking forward to playing at a bunch of fabulous weddings in the next few months.  It’s great to see couples becoming more and more creative as they personalize their weddings.

This summer, you may be able to spot us at churches across the city, the pyramids at Muttart Conservatory, Devonian Botanical Gardens, the historical Magrath Mansion, Union Bank inn, and a Regency-era themed ceremony at Fort Edmonton Park (think Pride & Prejudice).

Couples are also branching out with their music choices. In addition to the beloved wedding classics, some are opting for new arrangements of ‘their special song’ to make their ceremony that much more meaningful.  Think oldies-but-goldies Sheriff and Tom Petty, swingin’ jazz crooners Dean Martin and Bobby Darin, and even a tune by the indie electropop band Passion Pit.  With this mix, I’m sure there will never be a dull moment!

Beatles!

March has arrived, but we’re still hoping for a glimpse of spring here in Edmonton.  Regardless of the cold weather, love is in the air, and so are some fun new arrangements for Vif.  Aaron (our beloved quartet arranger) has been hard at work lately.  So far, he has completed Michael Jackson’s Thriller and a bunch of Beatles songs:  Penny Lane, Eleanor Rigby, Hey Jude, and Let it Be.  He’s also planning on adding A Hard Day’s Night, All You Need is Love, and When I’m Sixty-Four (and maybe one or two others).  What other Beatles tune would you like to hear in a unique string quartet version? Send us a message and let us know – you may just hear it at our next performance.

Also a reminder that our summer schedule is filling up – contact us soon to secure your date!

New Videos & Summer Dates

We just posted videos from our performance at Bridal Fantasy, including a wonderful new arrangement of Taylor Swift’s Love Story, created by our resident second violinist and arranger, Aaron Hryciw. Feel free to have a listen!

Our summer schedule is filling up, but we do have some dates still available. Contact us to find out if your date is still open, or if you have any other questions for us.