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Xavier Jara

  • Pyatt Hall, VSO School of Music 843 Seymour Street Vancouver, BC, V6B 0G4 Canada (map)
from 25.00

Sat, Nov 25th, 2017 7:00pm

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Please join us for a pre-concert intro session at 6:15 pm

Xavier Jara was born in 1993. He started playing guitar at the age of 12. At 15 he began studying with Alan Johnston at the MacPhail Center for Music in Minneapolis, MN. In 2009, Xavier won 1st place in both the Schubert Club and Thursday Musical scholarship competitions. He has played numerous recitals associated with these competitions including a concert for Dr. Paul Wirth’s “Salon se Leve” concert series. In 2011, he won 1st place in the senior division of the prestigious Guitar Foundation of America Competition, as well as 1st place in the youth division of the Indiana International Guitar Competition. Currently, Xavier studies at the Conservatoire National Supérieur de Musique de Paris in the class of Olivier Chassain. At the same time, he studies privately with Judicael Perroy. Since then, he has won 1st prize in the 2012 Andrés Segovia competition in Velbert, Germany, 1st prize at the Boston Guitarfest, 1st prize at the international guitar competition of Viseu (Portugal), 1st prize at the Sinaia international guitar competition in Romania and also preformed on the American national public radio program “From the Top”.


Our intro session will feature music by Vancouver local Joel Thomson. The evening will be complimented by an art exhibit focusing on young student artists Nina Abramishvili and Kelly Holmes.


Nina Abramishvili – Artist Statement

My work concentrates around the negative impact humans have had on the environment. With the use of acrylic paint and plastic bags, this series depicts the iconic mountains around the Greater Vancouver region. By meticulously painting an aesthetic landscape, followed by a procession to integrate plastic within the painting, I hope to mirror the contradiction of appreciating nature while consciously disposing of plastics. I not only wish to bring further awareness to the problems and repercussions of the Anthropocene period, but I hope to shed a different perspective on re-purposing the material.


Kelly Holmes - Artist Statement

My work primarily focuses on the concept of traces, and what’s left behind from moments of intimate interaction between bodies. I use mediums such as plaster, photography and film to attempt to document the remnants of love and existence. I often use the body, segments of the body (as an index), sacrificing portions of the body (such as hair or nails) to communicate the presence of a being. Through this impossible task of preserving and chronicling a moment of affection, I hope to raise questions of the finite qualities of love, and the inevitability of death.


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Joel Thomson began playing the guitar as a teenager. In those early times, he played electric guitar in bands with friends, and while he had an instructor at the time, his studies quickly became self directed, as the amount of music he consumed during those times was far greater than an instructor could keep up with. After reaching what was something of a plateau, he discovered a new challenge in classical guitar. After surpassing what his teacher could teach him, as a teenager still in high school, he was sent to the now chair of the faculty of music at Kwantlen polytechnic college, Don Hlus. After high school, he attended Kwantlen polytechnic for two years, before transferring to UVIC to complete his undergraduate degree with internationally renowned guitarist, Dr. Alexander Dunn, protegé of Pepé Romero, one of the worlds foremost classical guitarists.

After finishing his BMus, Joel took some time away from the classical guitar to rekindle his love for popular music. With the knowledge he had gained studying music theory, and exposure to the world of modern classical music firmly in mind, he set out to create rock with a twist(s). After finding like minded individuals, he assisted in forming anexperimental rock outfit, and was a major force in all the instrumental parts of the song writing therein. In this time, the group made many recordings of their music as a sort of DIY project in a home recording studio, where Joel learned the basics of audio engineering.

After some time, however, the group dissolved, and Joel had the opportunity to go back to the challenge of his life: the classical guitar. Back in Vancouver at this point, he sought the instruction of the newly arrived Daniel Bolshoy, who had taken over at UBC when Michael Strutt retired. After studying privately with Daniel for close to a year, Joel was convinced to take a Masters at UBC, where he received a generous scholarship based on his musical merit, as well as his academic history.

Around this time, Joel became very active in the Vancouver classical guitar scene, as well as the scene in a more national/international sense. He has been a competitor at the Northwest Guitar festival in Seattle, as well as the Hamilton Guitar festival. He has since formed many associations with local musicians, as well as those from outside the city, province, and country, performing many concerts as a soloist, and chamber musician. Notably, Joel has played for the Vancouver Guitar society, Kwantlen’s Music at Midweek series, as well as being a presenter at a guitar festival in Kaslo B.C. where he has also performed a concert, and given master classes for their local guitar organization. Joel is also a volunteer with the Vancouver Classic Guitar Society, where he heads up their open mic events.

Earlier Event: September 30
Jérémy Jouve
Later Event: February 3
The Beijing Guitar Duo