Musicians Peter Allen and Richard Hornsby come together to showcase the range of their talents and their instruments. The pair’s reimagining of famous works written originally for other instruments made for easy listening and pleasant performance. The concert was held on the UNB Fredericton’s campus at Memorial Hall.
Hornsby, Director of Music at UNB, came up with a show based on the concept of re-imagination. As a performer and teacher who specializes in clarinets and saxophones, he is familiar with his instruments’ relative youth and the necessity of re-imagination.
Everything performed at the concert, Hornsby says, “is all repertoire that was originally written for something else, other instruments.”
The idea of showcasing reimagined works was intended to give listeners a new experience when listening to the pieces. The concert’s program consisted of Bach, Dvorak, Liszt and Schubert.
Despite the advanced musical talent on the stage, the people in attendance were given a night of sweet-sounding music.
“This kind of evening is just pure enjoyment. I think you know, you don’t need to know anything about music, tuneful, you know, sort of more raw emotional kind of responses. It’s really just that kind of, hopefully, fulfilled pleasant feeling that you’ve just had a musical experience.”
Music is turned to in moments of elation, despair, and for the community. The audience sat together as music lovers experiencing the music’s offerings.
Hornsby speaks highly of his long-time friend and musical partner, Allen. “So the pieces Peter played at the end were actually written for voice. So it’s even more of a stretch to sort of adapt.”
Allen teaches piano and orchestration as an Associate Professor of Music at Dalhousie University’s Fountain School of Performing Arts and has been since 2005. On special events like the concert, he travels down from Halifax to perform. Allen is a concert pianist and performs solo works, chamber music, and concertos with orchestras. He participates regularly with The New Brunswick Summer Music Festival, Scotia Festival, Musique Royale, among others. His performances have been heard for years on CBC regional and national radio.
Hornsby himself has performed as a soloist and chamber musician in Canada, the U.S. and Europe, and with various Canadian orchestras such as the National Arts Centre Orchestra and the Toronto Symphony. As a saxophone player, he was a member of the Canadian Saxophone Quintet and is currently a member of Motion, a New Brunswick music ensemble, with which he has recorded and released several music works. Hornsby is the founder and artistic director of Atlantic Sinfonia, eastern Canada’s professional chamber orchestra, and is also Conductor in Music Director of the Fredericton Symphony Orchestra. The musician also acts as an adjudicator, and as a speaker. As UNB’s Director of Music and professor, he teaches conducting, Canadian music history, and music technology and conducts ensembles.
Both Hornsby and Allen delivered an eclectic and resounding performance to the delight of UNB students and Fredericton citizens alike. Hornsby’s reimagining of classic pieces of music showcases his and Allen’s musical talents and allows the audience to turn their ears to a new way of listening to classical music.