Tuckamore Festival is committed to making chamber music accessible for all.
One of the Festival’s primary objectives is to develop the appreciation and enjoyment of chamber music as a direct and deeply engaging communication between musicians and audiences, particularly through concerts presented by past participants of our Young Artist Program. This is a meaningful way to connect our alumni with a wider audience so that new listeners of all ages can experience chamber music in an accessible and informative manner. Since 2022, the Tuckamore Festival has included a post festival tour, that brings one Young Artist group across the province, to present free and engaging concerts to communities within and outside of the Avalon Peninsula.
In recent years, we have also looked to engage listeners outside of St. John’s area by offering chamber music experiences to youth audiences in rural communities throughout the Avalon and Eastern regions and beyond our summer activities. With the assistance of School Touring Program funding from ArtsNL, we have continued to reach further afield in our commitment to outreach and education.
The Tuckamore Festival has now completed 4 major school touring programs, including Taking on Water which premiered in 2023. This follows in the successful footsteps of the Ecology of Being, What Life Throws At You, and The Pale Blue Dot: A Voyage of Music and Space programs. Taking on Water was developed by Tuckamore Festival Artistic Directors Nancy Dahn and Timothy Steeves, in collaboration with Storyteller Robert Chafe, Composer Randolph Peters, and dancer Louise Moyes. Taking on Water consisted of a concert presentation and related workshop, using music to explore topics exploring themes of culture and identity, relationships between individuals, communities and natural systems, connections between music, culture, and self expression, and climate change. Multiple versions of the presentation and workshop allowed for age-appropriate shows from Elementary to High School level. The Taking on Water program was presented to 940 students through 7 workshops, and the full show was presented at 7 Arts and Culture Centres in Gander, Grand Falls-Windsor, Corner Brook, Stephenville, Happy Valley-Goose Bay, and Labrador City.
2017 School Tour
Following on the success of our 2016 school program, The Pale Blue Dot: A Voyage of Music and Space, Tuckamore Festival’s second major school tour was presented during the 2016-17 school year. The 2017 program, What Life Throws At You, was developed by Tuckamore Festival Artistic Directors Nancy Dahn and Timothy Steeves, in collaboration with Young Artist Program alumni Peter Cho and Peter Ko. What Life Throws At You comprised a concert presentation and related workshop, using music to explore topics relating to disability, discrimination, mental illness and other life challenges.
The program was designed in collaboration with an advisory committee that includes primary school teachers, and aligns with key Newfoundland and Labrador curriculum outcomes in music, social studies, art, religion as well as initiatives in mental health awareness, inclusiveness, safe schools, and diversity. Multiple versions of the presentation and workshop allowed for age-appropriate shows from the Kindergarten to high school level.
For four years we have presented emerging professional musicians in performances and workshops on chamber music in the school system. With the help of the Strataphoria Quartet — an exciting new ensemble made up of Tuckamore alumni who are current and past graduate and undergraduate students of Memorial University’s School of Music — the Festival has been reaching out to communities throughout Newfoundland and Labrador, offering free performances and workshops for schools establishing their own string programs. In 2014-15, the quartet delivered performances and workshops to over 1500 children, visiting schools throughout Metro St. John’s, Clarke’s Beach and Bay Roberts.
In the 2015-16 school year, with the help of funding from ArtsNL and sponsorship from Provincial Airlines, the Tuckamore Festival undertook its first major school tour. The Strataphoria quartet traveled to five schools throughout the Clarenville-Bonavista region and five schools in Labrador presenting performances and workshops to approximately 2300 students and teachers. Developed by Tuckamore and the Strataphoria Quartet, the program, Pale Blue Dot: A Voyage of Music and Space, comprises a 50-minute presentation and related 50-minute workshop focusing on music, science and culture, using the Voyager space probes as a connecting thread. The Pale Blue Dot program was crafted to align with key Newfoundland and Labrador curriculum outcomes, and multiple versions of the presentation and workshop allow for age-appropriate shows at schools from Kindergarten to high school.