Special Guests

Giovanni Andrea Zanon

(Soloist), violin

Giovanni Andrea Zanon is an Italian violinist who has performed extensively worldwide in prestigious venues including Carnegie Hall in New York, Teatro alla Scala in Milan, Philharmonie in Paris, Musikverein in Graz, Elbphilharmonie in Hamburg, Smetana Hall in Prague, Bayerisches Staatsoper in Munich, Festspielhaus in Baden-Baden, Royal Opera House in Muscat, Gran Teatro del Liceu in Barcelona, Teatro La Fenice in Venice, Auditorium Parco della Musica in Rome, and Arena di Verona.

In February 2022, he represented Italy at the closing ceremony of the 2022 Olympic Games in Beijing. The event was broadcast worldwide and reached over a billion viewers.

As a soloist, Zanon has collaborated with renowned conductors such as Fabio Luisi, Pinchas Zukerman, Theodore Guschlbauer, Donato Renzetti, Marco Armiliato, Andrea Battistoni, Omer Meir Wellber, and Jader Bignamini.

Passionate about chamber music, he has also collaborated with artists such as Pinchas Zukerman, Anna Netrebko, Mario Brunello, and Pablo Ferrandez.

Jean-Philippe Mc Clish

(Soloist), bass tenor

Jean-Philippe, originally from Quebec, was an artist in residence at the Atelier lyrique of the Opéra de Montréal from 2019 to 2021, and during the summer of 2021, a member of the Atelier lyrique at the prestigious Verbier Festival.

He is particularly notable in roles such as Figaro (Nozze di Figaro), Don Alfonso (Così fan tutte), Il Re (Ariodante), and Garibaldo (Rodelinda). His training as an actor, charisma, and sense of comic timing make him a promising interpreter of villainous and operetta roles such as Dulcamara (Elisir d’amore), Kékszakállú (Bluebeard’s Castle), Falke (Die Fledermaus), Raimondo (Lucia di Lammermoor), and more.

He has been heard in various recitals and symphonic works, including Mozart’s and Brahms’ Requiems, Handel’s Messiah, Mahler’s Knaben Wunderhorn and Lieder eines fahrenden Gesellen. His “superb warm, round, deep, powerful, and impressive voice” (As-tu vu) has allowed him to work with renowned companies such as Opéra de Montréal, Opéra de Regensburg, L’Orchestre Métropolitain, Orchestre symphonique de Québec, McGill Symphony Orchestra, Orchestre symphonique de Trois-Rivières, Orchestre symphonique de Laval, Kingston Symphony, Chautauqua Institution, Toronto Summer Festival, and the Verbier Festival. Recently, he performed the role of Orbazzano in Rossini’s Tancredi with the Teater Orchester Biel Solothurn and at the Winterthur Theater in Zurich, as well as Frère Laurent in Roméo et Juliette with Opéra du Royaume. He will return to Opéra de Montréal next season to play the role of Dr. Grenvil in Verdi’s Traviata.

Jean-Philippe holds a Master’s degree and an Artist Diploma from the McGill Schulich School of Music, and he is a recipient of the Jacqueline Desmarais Foundation, the Art Song Foundation Award, and a laureate of the OSTR singing competition.

Jim Thompson

(Soloist), trumpet

James Thompson is currently retiring from his Professor of Trumpet position at the Eastman School of Music. He held this position for 25 years. He came to this position having played Principal Trumpet in the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra since September 1990. He has held corresponding positions with the Phoenix Symphony, the Orchestra of the State of Mexico, the National Symphony of Mexico, and for 14 years, the Montreal Symphony Orchestra. Born in Frankfurt, Germany, he was raised in Phoenix, Arizona where he began trumpet studies at the age of ten. His principal teachers included Richard Longfield and Roger Voisin.

     Mr. Thompson has been active both as a soloist and a teacher. He has taught trumpet and Brass Ensemble at Northern Arizona University, the National Conservatory of Music in Mexico City, and McGill University in Montreal, Canada. He has also performed as soloist with orchestras in North and South America as well as Europe. In 1979 he competed in the first Maurice Andre International Trumpet Competition and was a prizewinner. He has made recital tours to Australia, Asia, Europe, North and South America. He has also been a guest artist with the Summit Brass, a brass chamber ensemble made up of members from America’s finest orchestras, and Chicago’s Music of the Baroque.

At the 1996 Atlanta Olympic Opening Ceremonies he was seen performing a jazz/gospel trumpet solo on television more than 3 billion people. In the last few years he has performed as guest Principal Trumpet with the New York Philharmonic, the Los Angeles Philharmonic, as well as Boston, Baltimore Seattle and orchestras in Italy and Germany. In the spring of 2010 Mr. Thompson was a member of the international jury for the Prague Spring Competition.

    Mr. Thompson has also actively encouraged new compositions for the trumpet. In 1987 he performed the world premiere of Malcolm Forsyth’s Concerto for Trumpet, which was written for him and the Montreal Symphony. He has recorded this concerto with the Kitchener-Waterloo Orchestra for CBC Records in May 1992. In 1990 he performed the Quebec premier of Jacques Hetu’s Trumpet Concerto, and in March of 1992 he gave the world premier of the Glenn Buhr Concerto for Trumpet, also written for him and the Montreal Symphony.

    Mr. Thompson can be heard on London Decca recordings with the Montreal Symphony, and Telarc’s Atlanta Symphony releases. He has also recorded on the Chandos Label in performances, which include, Vivaldi’s Concerto for Two Trumpets, and the critically acclaimed Shostakovich Concerto #1 for Piano, Trumpet and Strings.  In recent years he has recorded Danzante , a CD for Summit Records, of Trumpet concertos with the Eastman Wind Ensemble and American Portrait, Music  for Trumpet and Piano, for the ITG. Mr. Thompson is a Yamaha Performing Artist.

Mathieu Gaudet

(Soloist), piano

Mathieu Gaudet is a versatile artist and passionate musician who has been pursuing a remarkable career as a soloist, chamber musician, and conductor for over two decades. He performs a wide repertoire that has taken him to all ten Canadian provinces, the United States, Europe, and Asia. His concerts and recordings are regularly broadcast on Radio-Canada and CBC.

Mathieu Gaudet is currently recording the complete piano music of Schubert for the Analekta label, a project acclaimed by critics and music lovers. Mr. Gaudet is a recipient of grants from the Canada Council for the Arts, the Conseil des arts et des lettres du Québec, and the Musicaction Foundation. Volume I, “Le premier romantique,” was nominated for “Best Album: Solo or Small Ensemble Classical Music” at the 2020 ADISQ Awards, and Volume III, “La force du destin,” at the 2021 ADISQ Awards.

Highlights of his career include performances of Brahms’ Piano Concerto No. 2 under the direction of Leon Fleisher and Gustav Meier, as well as Rachmaninoff’s Piano Concerto No. 2 conducted by Jean-François Rivest.

In addition to numerous awards, his achievements include first prizes at the Concerto Competitions of the Glenn Gould School in Toronto and the Harrison Winters Competition in Baltimore, as well as the Russell C. Wonderlic Piano Competition, also in Baltimore, and the Canadian Music Competition. In 2004, he was a semi-finalist at the International Music Competition of Montreal and was the “coup de coeur” of renowned French pianist Jean-Philippe Collard, who praised the honesty and commitment of his interpretation.

Recognized for his pedagogical skills, Mathieu Gaudet has taught at the Conservatoire de musique de Montréal and the University of Ottawa. He also gives numerous masterclasses.

Mathieu Gaudet holds a Master’s degree in music from the prestigious Peabody Institute of the John Hopkins University in Baltimore, where he studied with Julian Martin and further refined his skills with Leon Fleisher. Invited to pursue a Doctorate at the Juilliard School in New York, he chose instead to attend the Glenn Gould School of the Royal Conservatory of Music in Toronto. Upon returning to Canada, he completed his training with Marc Durand, André Laplante, and John Perry, and in 2007, he obtained his Doctorate in Performance from the University of Montreal under the guidance of Paul Stewart. In 2008, he also earned a Master’s degree in orchestral conducting.

Jimmy Brière

(Soliste), piano

Jimmy Brière is a highly regarded musician who has established himself as a sought-after soloist and chamber musician. He has been a guest soloist with several orchestras, including the Orchestre symphonique de Montréal, Orchestre symphonique de Québec, Orchestre de la Francophonie, I Musici de Montréal, Orchestre Classica de Porto, Pleven Philharmonic Orchestra, Ruse Philharmonic Orchestra, and the South Bend Symphony. He is a regular guest at major festivals and music organizations in Canada, including the Lanaudière Festival, Ottawa Chamberfest, Orford Musique Festival, Festival of the Sound, and the International Festival at Domaine Forget.

As a chamber musician, Jimmy Brière has performed with renowned musicians and ensembles such as double bassist Edgar Meyer, clarinetist James Campbell, the New Zealand String Quartet, and the Canadian Chamber Players. Many of his performances have been broadcasted on Radio-Canada, CBC, WFMT-FM in Chicago, and Kol Hamusica in Israel. Since 2017, he has been a member of Trio Hochelaga, with whom he has performed on various stages in Quebec and recently completed a tour in China.

His debut solo album released by Analekta received warm critical acclaim. The album features works by Korngold, Rota, and Corigliano, all of whom are Oscar recipients. More recently, Jimmy Brière has recorded chamber music works by Auguste Descarries for ATMA Classique. He has also recorded an album of solo and chamber works by Jean Françaix under the XXI-21 label.

Jimmy Brière is the winner of several prestigious awards, including the First Prize at the Hong Kong International Competition in 1997, the International Competition of Porto in 1996, the Radio-Canada National Competition for Young Performers in 2001, and the Gold Medal at the Fischoff Chamber Music Competition. He was also the recipient of the 21st Opus Prize for “Concert of the Year” in contemporary music (2018) for his interpretation of A. Ginastera’s Piano Concerto No. 2.

In addition to his performing career, Jimmy Brière is a full professor at the Faculty of Music at the Université de Montréal. He has been a guest professor at the Orford Musique Academy for several years and has given masterclasses at various educational institutions, including the Guildhall School of Music and Drama, Conservatoire National Supérieur de Lyon, Haute École de Musique de Lausanne, and the Glenn Gould School in Toronto. He has also served as a jury member for numerous national and international competitions. Jimmy Brière holds degrees from the Faculty of Music at the Université de Montréal, Indiana University, and the Glenn Gould School in Toronto, where he studied with Marc Durand, Leon Fleisher, Menahem Pressler, and André Laplante.