Lucas Harris, theorbo, lute, Baroque guitar
The Continuo Band:
Linda Deshman, bass viol
Sara Blake, viol
Neil Aronof, baritone
Past Special Guests/Coaches/Presenters:
Charles Daniels, tenor
Continuo Group Biographies
Roland Hayes is a Public Defender in Buffalo City Court and is president of the Attorneys Union at the Legal Aid Bureau of Buffalo, Inc. A member of the Lute Society of America, he has studied with Robert Barto, Patrick O’Brien and Richard Falkenstein. He performs solo recitals several times a year and has accompanied Gerald Gray, Vocalis, David Abbott (viola da gamba), and City Fiddle, and has played with the Genesee Baroque Orchestra and the St. Paul’s Cathedral Choir in the performance of Bach’s St. John Passion.
Benjamin Kissell, a native Torontonian, was originally a student of the modern classical guitar at the Eli Kassner Guitar Academy, and participated in the 2001 Internationales Gitarren-Symposion in Iserlohn, Germany. Upon joining the Continuo Collective in 2005, Kissell began on theorbo and has recently picked up his first Baroque guitar in 2009. Kissell is also a student of Construction Engineering and is involved in numerous non-profit construction projects which help to provide housing and educational resources to those in need. More information on Benjamin can be found here.
David Lenson - Music and technology, particularly when combined, are his main interests. David studied lute and viola da gamba in a performance program at Wilfred Laurier and then completed a Master of Arts in musicology at the University of Western Ontario. He has a 30+ year history of performing lute in southern Ontario. Playing with the Continuo Collective for the last couple of years has been a highlight for David and he now considers this his third degree in musical studies. More information on David can be found on his website - www.cithera.ca.
Julia Seager-Scott received her Bachelor and Master of Music from the University of Toronto, studying with Judy Loman. She is now principal harpist of the Stratford Festival Orchestra, teaches in Toronto and is an active freelancer, doing solo, orchestral, choral, chamber and television work. Julia is currently studying Baroque music on her Italian triple harp with Maxine Eilander and Lucas Harris and is a founding member of the Toronto Continuo Collective. A recent highlight in Julia's Baroque harp career was accompanying Dame Emma Kirkby with the Tafelmusik Orchestra. She has also performed with the Toronto Consort, Opera Atelier and the Catacoustic Consort of Cincinnati. At the other end of the musical spectrum, Julia plays modern harp with Charles Spearin of Broken Social Scene in his Happiness Project, an album that won a JUNO Award in 2010. More information can be found at www.harpmusic.ca
Benjamin Stein began serious study of the lute and theorbo slightly over two years ago, further complicating a music existence that encompasses singing, teaching, music directing, composing, and playing guitar and piano. He is a member of the Tafelmusik Baroque Chamber Choir, and has sung for Opera Atelier, Toronto Mendelssohn Choir, Elora Festival Singers and the Nathaniel Dett Chorale. He has an MA in musicology from the University of Toronto, teaches guitar and voice at Havergal College and directs ensembles at Metropolitan United Church and Metropolitan Community Church. This June, he will be joining the continuo team for the Tafelmusik Baroque Summer Institute.