As part of his 18-year tenure as Vancouver Symphony Orchestra’s music director, Bramwell Tovey helped to establish the VSO School of Music (VSOSoM) in 2011. A state-of-the-art music school providing music education opportunities from early childhood to adult learning, Tovey served as the VSOSoM’s first artistic director.
During Tovey’s final concert last year, the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra announced the VSO School of Music’s orchestral programs would be renamed the Tovey Centre for Music to honour his legacy. In a dedication ceremony this week, a plaque was unveiled in the lobby of the Centre to make it official.
The Tovey Centre for Music encompasses the symphonic programs and activities of the VSO School of Music that includes string ensembles, a Chamber Music Program, and a lunchtime Artist’s Corner where musicians, leaders and educators go behind the music with students. Its guest-artist masterclasses provide VSOSoM students with the opportunity to be coached by world-renowned musicians and have been hosted by the likes of Yo-Yo Ma, Lang Lang, and Itzhak Perlman.
The school itself includes a recital hall and recording and internet distance-learning facilities, which enable the VSO to connect with classrooms throughout British Columbia, Canada and internationally. Its programs now serve more than 1,750 students annually.
Since leaving the VSO in 2018, the Juno and Grammy-award winning Tovey has gone to become the principal conductor for the B.B.C. Concert Orchestra, artistic advisor of the Rhode Island Philharmonic, and earlier this year assumed the role of artistic director of Calgary Opera.
For more information on the VSO School of Music and the Tovey Centre for Music visit vsoschoolofmusic.ca.