This Wednesday, February 25 the HPO Brass Quintet performs at Hamilton Artists Inc., amidst the gallery exhibit Ignition 3. Join us for a FREE 60-minute performance as part of the new Gallery Series hosted by our Composer-in-Residence and the musicians themselves. This mid-week outing is the perfect opportunity to get up close and personal with your HPO.
Attend the reception following the performance and get to know HPO musicians like Principal Trumpet player Michael Fedyshyn. Read below to learn more about his life as a professional musician.
Principal Trumpet player Michael Fedyshyn’s always had music in his home as a kid. His mother sang in a church choir and his grandmother played recordings from the Baroque period which featured the trumpet. “I remember hearing it and thinking ‘oh, what’s that sound?’ I really liked the sound of that instrument.” Michael started playing the trumpet when he was 12, but it was his high school teacher who detected his early talent and suggest he take private lessons. It was Michael’s private teacher Roger W. Oades opened up a whole new world for the young trumpet player who realized he wanted to be a professional musician.
Michael has collaborated with a number of musicians outside the classical music realm, including Hamilton’s own beatboxer Hachey the MouthPEACE. Since beatboxers don’t typically read music when they perform, much of the performances between the HPO Brass and Hachey happened organically. “We explained to [Hachey] that in this spot you’ve got some free time to do your thing, then we’ll come back in and play it by ear,” says Michael. He would like to continue working with Hachey, mentioning that “we’re not done with this collaboration— it’s very different from some other stuff I’ve done in the past.”
Michael cites the HPO’s performance of Shostakovich’s Symphony No. 5 as his favourite moment performing with the HPO. Since Marcelo Lehninger was conducting that evening, former music director Jamie Sommerville had the rare opportunity to hear the orchestra from the audience. “It was quite a nice thing for the orchestra to play such a big piece, an important piece in our repertoire, and to have Jamie there to hear it,” he says. “[Jamie] was really pleased and proud of the orchestra, and said ‘you could put any of those solo performances up against any major orchestra in North America.’” Jamie’s feedback and the caliber of the musicianship on stage that night marks that concert a special one for Michael.
Michael is married to fellow HPO musician and Principal Second Violinist Bethany Bergman. As the couple have two kids and juggle a rather insane schedule, Michael says the key to success for professional musicians is finding the right work/life balance.