Nothing small about this summer music festival

Oboist Pierre Cayer and cellist Laura Backstrom are both performers and artistic directors of the Eine Kleine Summer Music festival.

Oboist Pierre Cayer and cellist Laura Backstrom are both performers and artistic directors of the Eine Kleine Summer Music festival.

Chamber music festival has developed a grassroots reputation

If the Eine Kleine Summer Music festival is part of your annual tradition, you better buy your tickets in a hurry.

The first and last of the four-concert series are already sold out.

“It’s a bit ridiculous,” said Laura Backstrom, co-artistic director and performer since 1999.

“It’s very unusual (for chamber music) … We may have to start thinking about playing some of the concerts twice.”

The annual festival, held at the First Unitarian Church of Victoria, 5575 West Saanich Rd., generates a kind of buzz and belies its translated name. Eine kleine, taken from Mozart’s composition “Eine Kleine Nachtmusik” means “a little” in English.

“We don’t really need to advertise – it’s just people talking to each other and it helps that it’s in such a beautiful spot.”

The festival features talent from home and away.

“We always like to get a special guest but this year we have two,” said Backstrom, explaining it’s part of the ramping up for the festival’s 25th anniversary in 2012.

Pianist Jane Coop of Vancouver and cellist Shauna Rolston of Vancouver will perform on June 5 and June 26, respectively.

From Victoria, three of the musicians: Terence Tam, Lorraine Min and Kenji Fuse, were featured soloists with the symphony this year.

“I just feel excited about having those three local artists who are really at the peak of their career and getting such a following,” Backstrom said.

For the uninitiated, chamber music is played without a conductor. “You just play by the visual and aural cues that you get.”

And unlike an orchestra, which features sections of musicians, a chamber ensemble sees only one person play each part. That allows the musicians to be more expressive, Backstrom said.

“Other (musicians) are going to allow that and adapt to that because there are fewer people … I find it really distills music down to its essence and it’s very powerful.”

Mark your calendar

• Eine Kleine Summer Music takes place every Sunday between June 5 and June 26 at the First Unitarian Church of Victoria, 5575 West Saanich Rd.

• Doors open at 1:30 p.m. and the concerts start at 2:30. To order tickets, call 250-413-3134 and leave a message.

• For more information, visit

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

The Capital Regional District hopes to be a national leader in zero waste and the circular economy, but getting there will take curbing construction waste and addressing challenges brought on by the region’s growth. Pictured is the Hartland landfill. (Black Press Media file photo)
CRD aims to be zero waste national leader, reduce enough to curb landfill expansion

Capital Region will have to reduce major waste sources: construction, organics from apartments

Sidney Lions Club is currently selling 50/50 raffle tickets for a virtual fundraiser to send kids and adults with disabilities to Easter Seals Camps like the one at Camp Shawnigan. (Easter Seals/Submitted)
Sidney service club raises funds people with disabilities to have some summer fun

Raffle helps fund in-person and online summer camps for adults and children

Langford Fire Rescue (Black Press Media file photo)
Langford looks to strike out on its own for emergency fire dispatch services

Mayor Stew Young says the city is large enough to negotiate solo

Victoria Police Department looks to identify a person of interest after a Friday night stabbing. (VicPD handout)
Police seek person of interest after Victoria stabbing

Friday night assault leaves one with potentially life-altering injuries

A bullet hole is seen in the windshield of an RCMP vehicle approximately 4 km from Vancouver International Airport after a one person was killed during a shooting outside the international departures terminal at the airport, in Richmond, B.C., Sunday, May 9, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Homicide team IDs man in fatal YVR shooting as police grapple with spate of gang violence

Man, 20, charged in separate fatal shooting Burnaby over the weekend

A map of Huu-ay-aht-owned forestry cutblock. (SUBMITTED PHOTO)
B.C. First Nations restrict access to territory in wake of forestry standoffs

Huu-ay-aht set up checkpoints after heated and dangerous incidents on southwest Vancouver Island

RCMP are searching for Philip Toner, who is a ‘person of interest’ in the investigation of a suspicious death in Kootenay National Park last week. Photo courtesy BC RCMP.
RCMP identify ‘person of interest’ in Kootenay National Park suspicious death

Police are looking for Philip Toner, who was known to a woman found dead near Radium last week

Vancouver Canucks goaltender Thatcher Demko (35) makes a save on Winnipeg Jets’ Nate Thompson (11) during second period NHL action in Winnipeg, Monday, May 10, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Fred Greenslade
Vancouver Canucks see NHL playoff hopes dashed despite 3-1 win over Winnipeg

Montreal Canadiens earn final North Division post-season spot

The B.C. legislature went from 85 seats to 87 before the 2017 election, causing a reorganization with curved rows and new desks squeezed in at the back. The next electoral boundary review could see another six seats added. (Black Press files)
B.C. election law could add six seats, remove rural protection

North, Kootenays could lose seats as cities gain more

The Independent Investigations Office of B.C. is investigating the shooting of an Indigenous woman in the Ucluelet First Nation community of Hitacu. (Black Press Media file photo)
B.C. First Nation wants ‘massive change’ after its 3rd police shooting in less than a year

Nuu-chah-nulth woman recovering from gunshot wounds in weekend incident near Ucluelet

Nurse Gurinder Rai, left, administers the Moderna COVID-19 vaccine to Maria Yule at a Fraser Health drive-thru vaccination site, in Coquitlam, B.C., on Wednesday, May 5, 2021. The site is open for vaccinations 11 hours per day to those who have pre-booked an appointment. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
COVID vaccine bookings to open for adults 40+, or 18+ in hotspots, across B.C.

Only people who have registered will get their alert to book

Most Read