Toronto-based junctQín (pronounced ‘junction’) consists of pianists Elaine Lau, Joseph Ferretti, and Stephanie Chua. The name of the collective is taken from junctio – the Latin word meaning to join, and from Qín – the Chinese character for keyboard instrument. Elaine and Joseph began duo piano performances in 2003; Stephanie and Elaine met the same year as graduate students. The three discovered a mutual love of contemporary music for all kinds of keyboards, so when the trio united for a gig in the spring of 2009, junctQín was born.
Self-proclaimed “keyboard geeks,” the members of junctQín consider the group a vehicle to introduce audiences to contemporary keyboard repertoire. Through collaborations with living composers, innovative programming, interactive performances and outreach programs, junctQín’s goal is to break down the barriers of new music with one of the most accessible instruments – the piano. Since its recent inception, junctQín has been presented in performances by the Canadian Opera Company’s Four Seasons Centre, Scotiabank Nuit Blanche, Barrie’s Colours of Music Festival, Artsweek Peterborough, Gallery 345, and numerous others. Their engagement in many outreach events and activities include Cambridge Galleries, the spOtlight Festival of Ontario, Culture Days in Toronto, CONTACT New Music Marathon, and school workshops connected with music festivals.
With a keen interest in multimedia and multi-arts presentations, junctQín has also collaborated with Canadian artist Kenneth Doren in his digital opera Rule Britannia: A low opera in grand shite style and with Toronto conceptual artist Derek Liddington for his Springsteen-inspired, piano-duel installation Coup de grâce. Projects and concerts during 2011 included commissions of works by Canadian composers Aaron Gervais, Alex Eddington and Susan Griesdale, as well as a collaboration with the Toy Piano Composers Collective and concerts at the Colours of Music Festival (Barrie) and Music At Noon (Wilfrid Laurier University). Highlights of 2012 included a collaboration with Austrian composer Karlheinz Essl (University of Music and Performing Arts, Vienna) co-presented by Toronto’s Music Gallery with additional sponsorship from the Austrian Cultural Forum and the Ernst von Siemens Music Foundation (Switzerland), as well as an interview and special feature broadcast on Rondo Classic FM (Helsinki, Finland), reaching audiences in Armenia, Hungary and Kyrgyzstan.
The versatility of Elaine, Joseph, and Stephanie has resulted in their involvement in many performances that extend beyond traditional settings, as well as community outreach activities. They have each appeared as soloists and collaborative pianists throughout Canada, the United States, and Europe, in numerous concert series, venues and ensembles. Dedicated to working with living composers, these musicians have premiered dozens of Canadian and international compositions.
junctQín wishes to acknowledge the generous support of both the Toronto and Ontario Arts Councils.
For more information, visit: www.junctqin.com.