Brentwood School of Music staged four shows throughout the day, showcasing the young performers, who all played a mix of musical styles. (Sarah Kerrigan Submission)

Poignant tenor to music school’s end of year concert

Brentwood School of Music’s final concert included farewell to founder

Brentwood School of Music bade a sad farewell to their founder at their end of year recital.

Current owners Mike Preston and Sarah Kerrigan put on the annual recital, with students performing in four back-to-back concerts at the end of May. This year, the school community paid tribute to founder Carrie Dujela, who passed away recently. She opened the school 42 years ago and watched it grow into a familiar part of the Peninsula’s music scene.

ALSO READ: Phillips Backyard Weekender announces line-up of dance, reggae, dream-pop and hip-hop

It was the first year she hadn’t returned to watch the shows, but Preston says the kids did her memory proud, playing some excellent music in tight arrangements.

The students usually have individual lessons with their teachers but the shows are a chance to play in a group, blending their talents with others. Typically, they practise for a month before the recital and for many it is one of their first tastes of playing in a band. Those who enjoy the camaraderie and creativity of group music can sign up for the school’s Rock Camps in the summer.

“You watch people quickly understand how music is always meant to be played together,” says Preston, “It’s easy to forget as there are so many practice programs and YouTube tutorials, which are great don’t get me wrong, but people end up doing it on their own, and it’s a total different story when there are other humans and everyone is depending on each other’s timing.”

ALSO READ: Patients’ memories sparked by the soundtrack of their lives

The concerts happened at the Friendship Community Church and consisted of 100 performances, with some students playing multiple instruments.

Preston says Dujela was something of a prodigy on the piano, before she suffered an injury and put her energy into running the school. He and Kerrigan picked up the mantle in October 2016 and have run the school since, working hard to fulfill her wishes to continue building the school’s programs.

He says Dujela was much-loved in part due to the work environment she created and the fair payment to teachers in an industry where peripatetic music teachers are often underpaid. Preston says an indication of the community feeling the school exudes is that third generation students will soon be enrolled and some of the teachers have worked at the school for over a decade.

At the end of year recital Preston shared his feelings about Dujela.

ALSO READ: Whatever happened to elevator music?

“We told everyone that we wouldn’t have been sitting here watching the show if it hadn’t have been for Carrie. And it was also the way she ran it, there are a lot of times teachers don’t get the best cut of the teaching or it doesn’t seem like much of a community. She was a musician herself and she genuinely cared.”

The concert saw a range of styles of music and covers of hit songs. Preston said, for him, the highlight was hearing students barely into their teens playing with a competence professionals would be happy with.

The school have a range of upcoming programs, such as their popular Rock Camps for experienced students and Meet the…Electronic Instruments for keen newbies.

For a full overview of the programs the school provide visit brentwoodschoolofmusic.com.



nick.murray@peninsulanewsreview.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

Last week for first year of Oak Bay deer contraception campaign

Crew working to administer second booster to all 60 does

Downtown Victoria tea shop switches to plastic tea bags

Murchie’s Tea and Coffee says the transition is temporary

Dog memorial at Esquimalt Lagoon encourages living in the moment

Owner of Jazz the black lab sets up tennis ball memorial one year after dog’s death

Western Speedway racing legend ‘The Flying Plumber’ turns 98

Dave Cooper recalls car crashes, his first win, and more

Second puppy killed by poisonous mushrooms in Victoria

Springer spaniel puppy died after consuming mushrooms in Fairfield neighbourhood

WATCH: Greater Victoria’s top stories of the day

A round-up of the day’s top stories

POLL: Do you think the day of the federal election should be a statutory holiday?

Increasing voter turnout has long been a goal of officials across the… Continue reading

‘Sky didn’t fall:’ Police, lawyers still adjusting after pot legalization

Statistics Canada says 541 people were charged under the federal Cannabis Act between Oct. 17, 2018 and the end of the year

Fewer people prescribed opioids in B.C., but other provinces lack data: doctors

Patients who began taking opioids were prescribed smaller doses for shorter duration

Electric cello, stolen from vehicle in Williams Lake, returned to U.S. owner

Rita Rice of Texas said she and her husband had given up hope of ever seeing it again

Vancouver Island’s West Coast going wild about cycling

Ongoing project will tie Tofino and Ucluelet together with a paved cycling trail

Drop, cover and hold on: Thousands of British Columbians to take part in earthquake drill

This year’s drill comes as scientists announce discovery of ‘stormquakes,’ an earthquake and hurricane

Woman, 24, faces life-altering injuries after being dragged 4 blocks by vehicle in Vancouver

A gofundme account says the woman will have to undergo multiple complex surgeries

Most Read