Hello Friends,
First we would like to wish you all a HAPPY NEW YEAR 2020, as this marks the beginning of a new decade of musical adventures!

 

Tickets are selling quickly and are available on-line through Eventbrite - Obsessions Octet and in advance at the Art Gallery of St. Albert and the Musee Heritage Museum

Tickets are $35 for adults and $30 for students and seniors. If available, tickets will also be sold at the door the night of the concert.

For more info, please visit the St. Albert Chamber music website www.stalbertchambermusic.ca

2020 looks extremely exciting for us as Obsessions Octet is getting ready for another European Tour. We are thrilled to have support from both the Federal and Provincial Government through grants from the Canada Council for the Arts and the Alberta Foundation for the Arts. The Octet is very grateful for this support and also to those of you who come out to our concerts and enjoy our music. A large part of performing is the energy and interaction we have with our audience. Your feedback and support is invaluable to the success of Obsessions. As for our upcoming tour, we will keep you updated once we have all the details in place.

To start your year off musically, we’d like to invite you to join the Obsessions String Quartet at a concert for the St. Albert Chamber Music Society, on January 18th, 2020 at 7:30pm.

Our concert venue is St. Albert United Church located at 20 Green Grove Drive in St. Albert. Doors open at 6:30 pm, the pre-concert talk begins at 7:00 pm, and the concert begins at 7:30 pm.  

Obsessions String Quartet consists of four respected Edmonton musicians: Joanna Ciapka-Sangster– violin; Yue Deng– violin; Leanne Maitland– viola; and Ronda Metszies – cello. 

The evening’s program will begin with selections from Miniatures based on Georgian folk tunes by Sulkhan Tsintsadze. This will be followed by Four Seasons in Buenos Aires by renowned Argentine composer, Astor Piazzolla. These evocative pieces have been arranged specifically for Obsessions Quartet by Jacek Sobieraj- Polish / Canadian composer and long standing friend of the Obsessions.

The second half of the evening will begin with Barber’s String Quartet in B minor, Op. 11. The quartet will then be joined by two well-known musicians and fellow members of Obsessions Octet: Kent Sangster, saxophone; and John Taylor, double bass. Together the ensemble will perform original works by Kent Sangster and more works of Astor Piazzolla.
We look forward to seeing you and sharing this exceptional evening of music with you on January 18! Thank you to Dr. Alan Murdock and David and Marilyn Wangler for sponsoring this concert.

Warmly, Obsessions Quartet

   
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Listen here: Obsessions Octet flying high on classical octane (by Mike Ross)
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REVERENCE   is available in Edmonton’s coolest record stores:  blackbyrd and The Gramophone.  

This is our most diversified recording so far, and promises some familiar sounds as well as new ones to explore. Half of it was recorded in Poland , after our last European Tour 2017 in Gdansk, and the other half was finished in Edmonton, in June 2018. We are looking forward to a concert featuring more music from this new CD in early October.

Feel free to contact us with your thoughts about our new album, questions or suggestions.

                                                                

 

                                                                                        

 

 

 

 

  • Obsessions Octet’s fourth offering 
    "Well into their second decade, the experiment known as Obsessions Octet shows serious staying power, proving that melding a string quartet to a jazz quartet was an inspired idea. Their new fourth recording, Reverence on Bent River, expertly takes in a wide breadth of material that’s alternately sublime, suspenseful, pleasingly intricate, elegantly spare, and even danceable over eight tracks.
    Obsessions Octet recently released their fourth offering, Reverence on Bent River. 
    Chief composer-arranger and reedman Kent Sangster delivers some of the jazziest tunes, but his opening Reverence and the Latin-infused Circling Back are true classical-jazz fusions, with the strings dutifully marking changes and ornamenting melodies, opening things up for Sangster’s expressive saxophones. Cracovian Nights draws blissfully from a European tour experience, while Mr. Rollins is a bouncy tribute to the great jazz soloist.
    There’s great work from guesting or covered composers too. Walking By Flashlight shows off the expansive genius of Maria Schneider, which Sangster absorbed firsthand during her visit here in 2018. Polish composer Krzysztof Komeda was a giant at stitching jazz to classical and soundtracks, and his Ballad For Bernt makes a delicious, spare waltz. Allan Gilliland’s Morse finds a brilliant Hitchcock-like thriller tone, inspiring a watery keyboard solo for Chris Andrew, before Andrew’s own Parisian Summer lays out a path of timeless innocence for Sangster’s soprano sax. Whether classified as a jazz band or string band, they’ve come a long way
    ."
  • “Obsessions Octet’s new fourth recording, Reverence on Bent River, expertly takes in a wide breadth of material that’s alternately sublime, suspenseful, pleasingly intricate, elegantly spare, and even danceable over eight tracks.” 

-Roger Levesque, Edmonton Journal

  • “Obsessions Octet channels emotions into something more romantic.It’s not romance in a sugary, predictable style, but with a robust sound that supports a flood of musical communication.Together since 2005, the group combines the lineup of a typical jazz quartet( sax-piano-bass-drums) with a classical string quartet in a lush sound that appeals to jazz and classical fans.”
-Roger Levesque, Edmonton Journal
 
  • ”Obsessions is a unique combination of jazz quartet plus string quartet, and the distinctive blend of catchy jazz riffs with lush strings earned its debut album a Juno nomination.”- SEE Magazine
  • The Obsessions Octet performed as part of the 10th Annual International Festival of the Aegean on the Island of Syros (Greece) July 2014 in two appearances-----it was a great and impressive success.  These extraordinary, virtuosic and creative visiting artists brought an elegance  and uniqueness to the Festival which which was simply amazing.  They are world-unique and we look forward to having them return soon."

-Peter Tiboris, General Director & Music Director MidAm International Inc., Festival of the Aegean in Syros, Greece

  • ”It was a pleasure to hear you all live, and your performance was so well received by everyone.You have put together a group of very fine musicians indeed, and the pleasure they have in sharing music is evident.I look forward to hearing you again!”

- Norman Dunfee, President $ Executive Director of MidAmerica Productions Inc. in Carnegie Hall, NYC

 

                                             

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                   

 

Kent Sangster and his Obsessions Octet has released the following albums:

OBSESSION, MELODIA, STEPPIN'UP and REVERENCE

 

Our new record is OUT !!!
REVERENCE   is
 available in Edmonton’s coolest record stores:  blackbyrd and The Gramophone.
(no samples are available to listen @ this moment)

 

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to listen to our music samples