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Queen's University



This unique string ensemble, under the direction of Don Dawson, provides teen and young adult string players at the intermediate to advanced level an opportunity to perform an eclectic range of string ensemble repertoire, including jazz, blues, fiddle and rock styles. 24 rehearsals will focus on musical and ensemble skills, improvisation, and technical issues unique to ensemble string playing. This group will develop skills necessary to performing without a conductor. The ensemble will perform on QCM recitals as well as at community events throughout the academic year.




Rehearsals will take place on Thursdays in Harrison-LeCaine Hall, room 120, at Queen’s University, from 7.30-9pm.

24 week schedule:

  • Fall Term Rehearsals: Thursday 18th September to Thursday 4th December, 2014.
  • Winter Term Rehearsals: Thursday 8th January to Thursday 9th April, 2015.
  • No rehearsals will be held 19th  February and 19th March, 2015.

    The end of year performance will be on:

    • Sunday April 19th, 2015, 2pm - KFLA Public Library Wilson Room

      All participants will be expected to prepare their parts individually so that rehearsal time can be spent on ensemble work. Please arrive at least 15 minutes before the start of rehearsal to unpack, set up, and tune.

      All participants must give advance notice in case of absence. Attendance is key for rehearsal planning purposes. 

      Other concert dates will be provided with as much notice as possible. Student participation in concerts is crucial to the ensemble's success.



      This ensemble is open to violinists, violists, cellists and bassists of high school age or higher, playing at the RCM grade 6/Suzuki book 4 level or higher. Younger students will be accepted at the instructor’s discretion.  One keyboard player will be accepted.

      A balance of instruments will be taken into consideration. The ensemble will run with a minimum of 11 participants: 6 violins (3+3), 2 violas, 2 cellos, 1 bass (please refer to QCM Policy for further details regarding procedure if minimum class size is not achieved). The maximum number of participants will be capped at 27 (16 violins (8+8), 4 violas, 4 cellos, 2 basses, 1 keyboard) to ensure that the chamber nature of the ensemble is maintained.  


      3) AUDITIONS

      All new participants must audition on:

      • Thursday 11th September: 7.30 - 9pm, HLH room 120

      Audition requirements are:

      • One 3-octave scale and arpeggio. Key, tempo, and bowing pattern – own choice.
      • One own choice solo selection. Piano accompanist not required.
      • Sight reading

      Please contact Queen’s Community Music to schedule an audition time. If you can not make this time after all, please contact the office to arrange a private audition, preferably before September 11th so that repertoire can be adequately planned and prepared in advance of the first rehearsal.



      All participants must bring to each rehearsal:

      • Instrument and bow, and necessary accessories
      • Device to prevent end-pin slipping (cellists)
      • Music in folder
      • Pencil
      • Eraser

      Music will be provided by QCM, and must be returned in good condition upon completion of the term. All lost or damaged original parts must be replaced at the participant’s expense.


      5) FEES

      Course fee: $300 per person (includes all music).

      Registration fee: $40 per family per year. This fee covers registration for all programs within QCM over the year.

      Kingston, Ontario, Canada. K7L 3N6. 613.533.2000