Pianist Rachel Kiyo Iwaasa kicks off the 2021 Sonic Boom Festival in a concert of ten new pieces by B.C. composers. Photo by SD Holman.
Pianist Rachel Kiyo Iwaasa kicks off the 2021 Sonic Boom Festival in a concert of ten new pieces by B.C. composers. Photo by SD Holman.

Adapting, as was imperative in the age of COVID-19, the Sonic Boom Festival has pivoted online with a free festival of new music created by British Columbia composers.

“Vancouver Pro Musica is excited to be presenting a special online version of our Sonic Boom Festival this March, which combines concerts postponed from last year’s festival plus new concerts and events,” says general manager Fleur Sweetman in a media release. “This year’s festival is entirely free and accessible for all through our YouTube channel. Join us this March to hear fabulous new music by B.C. composers performed by superb B.C. musicians.”

The festival will kick off on March 23 with a concert of new works for piano performed by
Rachel Kiyo Iwaasa. 2020’s featured artist, Iwaasa will perform ten new pieces by B.C. composers.

On March 24, Pacific Baroque Orchestra performs a concert of new works in a co-presentation with Early Music Vancouver.

The March 24 concert features the Pacific Baroque Orchestra. Recorded at the Telus Studio Theatre at the Chan Centre in November, this co-presentation with Early Music Vancouver will include a series of new compositions written for period instruments.

On March 25 and 26 comes an eclectic assortment of works for small ensembles recorded at Pyatt Hall in downtown Vancouver.

In addition to a live-stream master class for participating composers, on March 27, this year’s featured artist, Vancouver Symphony Orchestra’s Beth Orson, premieres a concert of new works for solo oboe and English horn.

The final YouTube premiere concert will take place on March 28 with 2021 featured artists,
trombonist Jeremy Berkman and pianist and harpsichordist Angelique Po performing pieces recorded in St. Philip’s Church.

All concerts are free and will broadcast on the Vancouver Pro Musica YouTube channel. Visit vancouverpromusica.ca for more information.