August 29, 2020 – #TakeOutArt613

Now that our two week run with the Young Arts Leaders Collective / Collectif des jeunes leaders en arts‘ #takeoutart613 initiative is over, we would like to share our curated playlist with the wider public!

Even though our postcards are no longer available at Pure Kitchen Ottawa, we’d still recommend listening to these tracks while chowing down on a Royale with Cheese (Zac’s choice) or a Warrior Bowl (Edana’s).

Thanks again for the opportunity!

SHHH!! Ensemble’s #takeoutart613 Playlist.

August 16, 2020 – Morlock Premiere!

SHHH!! is really looking forward to our upcoming Tuckamore Festival “Alumni All-Stars” performance on Tuesday, August 18th! On the programme is Andy Akiho’s Karakurenai, our adaptation of Mario Castelnuovo-Tedesco’s Fantasia for Guitar and Piano, and the world premiere of Jocelyn Morlock’s Spirit Gradient! You can be one of the first to hear this exciting new addition to the piano/percussion repertoire! It’s funky, crunchy, stylish… in a word: BAD-ASS! Tickets and info here.

We’ll be live-streaming from New Brunswick at Chez Higham-Boland, where we have been engaging in some well deserved R&R… SHHH!! style!!! … rehearsing and reading (new scores!)… and of course relaxing as well.

Our Spirit Gradient setup featuring two octaves of crotales, triangles, marimba, and piano!

Also, for our Ottawa-based friends: we are really excited to be partnering with the awesome folks at Young Arts Leaders Collective and Pure Kitchen Ottawa for the #takeoutart613 initiative! Starting this weekend, and for a limited time only, your Pure Kitchen take out meal will include a postcard with a print from a local artist and an exclusive link to a SHHH!! Ensemble curated playlist of some of our recent work. 🀀 πŸ₯‘ πŸ₯¦ 🎢

June 29, 2020 – Music and Nature

Thanks to Music and Beyond (a classical summer music festival in Ottawa), in late June we had the unique opportunity to record at the Canadian Museum of Nature! We were completely alone in the museum, save for a few security personnel, camera crew, and a handful of other musicians. We recored a little arrangement of the Fossils movement Camille Saint-Saens’ Carnival of the Animals, naturally, this was recorded in the fossils exhibit! Enjoy!

EDIT (August 15th): You can also hear SHHH!! percussionist Zac Pulak’s Cave Drumming improvisation, released today!

June 6, 2020 – Home Sweet Home

Despite the continued major disruptions to our concert schedule, we’ve been keeping busy with learning new repertoire, rehearsing for live-streams, and participating in Jeunesses Musicales Canada’s Domicile AdorΓ© / Home Sweet Home Competition! You can check out our submission below, titled Iso-Elation! Composed by Zac, the piece makes use of exclusively the Do Mi Si La Do RΓ© pitches, and juxtaposes the many ways an individual may feel during isolation.

April 21, 2020 – #CanadaPerforms

Yesterday afternoon we had the opportunity to perform a live-streamed concert as a part of the #CanadaPerforms series sponsored by the National Arts Centre, Facebook Canada, Slaight Music, the RBC Foundation, and Sirius XM Canada. It was a wonderful experience and such a privilege to be able to share our music even during these uncertain times.

We have uploaded the livestream to YouTube where you can watch the recital in it’s entirety!

April 5, 2020 – The Angels’ Share

For those of you enjoying a nice glass of scotch this evening… πŸ˜‹ πŸ₯ƒ 🎧

We just released a new video of the Ottawa premiere of John Gordon Armstrong’s “The Angels’ Share”. Each movement in this work is a musical exploration of the tasting notes from a particular single malt.Β 

To that end, here is the list:

i. Like a Fist to the Jaw (Ardbeg)
ii. Smells like Vanilla Ice Cream (Aberfeldy 15)
iii. A Spicy Little Dram (Allt-A-Bhannie)
iv. Tastes Like Bandaids (Talisker 10)
v. Like Butter (Bladnoch)

Please enjoy responsibly. πŸ˜‰

March 22, 2020 – Spirits Tour Wrap

On the 13th we wrapped up our Spirits tour, and not a minute too soon! Due to precautions re: COVID-19, our concert schedule for the foreseeable future has really suffered.

The Spirits tour was an incredible experience; thank you to our many wonderful presenters and our attentive, adventurous, and generous audiences for making it all possible!!

Here are a few images from the final performance (courtesy of Ming Wu). We will also be uploading some live footage to the blog in the coming weeks.

Probably most disappointing in the COVID-cancellation saga was a three week career development residency at the Banff Centre for Arts and Creativity with the Gryphon Trio. Banff is a really special place for us as a duo, as it is where SHHH!! first began. It would have been incredible to be back and working with such esteemed mentors! Hopefully next year!!

nother concert that has regrettably been postponed was an upcoming collaboration with the Ottawa New Music Creators and Ottawa International Writers Festival. ONMC commissioned three new works (by Kevin Reeves, Noora Nakhaei, and Adam Saikely) for us based on literature featured at the festival. An alternate premiere date will be announced soon.

Despite the loss of concerts and opportunities we are staying positive by getting a head start on upcoming projects, organizing footage and photographs, and uploading new content. Stay tuned for all of that!!

February 14, 2020 – V Day 2020

“Truly virtuosic and intense playing from both Higham and Pulak” (Confluence Concerts)

Apropos of Valentine’s Day, SHHH!! Ensemble has been feeling the love on our Spirits tour so far! πŸ₯°

We just completed the first leg, wrapping up a weeklong residency and recital at the Canadian Music Centre (Toronto), and performances at Conrad Grebel University College (Waterloo), Lakehead University’s LUMINA Series (Thunder Bay), and at Cambrian College (Sudbury).

We are looking forward to phase two, which begins in Winnipeg at the University of Manitoba on February 28!

Check out some gratuitous gear shots (predictably courtesy of Zac), and other pics snapped by Edana and our wonderful presenters as well: