Join us this September for an annual free outdoor celebration of live music in George Lane Park.

Honens logo

Honens Open Air High River returns! Join us for a glorious concert in George Lane Memorial Park, as we celebrate togetherness, arts and culture, and the simple joy of spending time outdoors. The event in George Lane Memorial Park is a reminder of the magic that live music brings, enriching our lives and connecting us all. There’s something for everyone in this family-friendly program featuring WindSync, Jon Kimura Parker, Zhenni Li-Cohen and Illia Ovcharenko.

  • Free Admission
  • Parking is available inside George Lane Memorial Park.
  • Additional parking within walking distance is available here.

Presented in partnership with Honens
WindSync

WindSync

flute, clarinet, oboe, bassoon and horn

Versatile and vibrant, the musicians of WindSync “play many idioms authoritatively, elegantly, with adroit technique, and with great fun” (All About the Arts). In the span of one performance, the quintet can cover vast musical ground. WindSync launched an international touring career after winning the 2012 Concert Artists Guild Victor Elmaleh Competition and the 2016 Fischoff National Chamber Music Competition, and they continued as prize winners at the 2018 M-Prize Chamber Arts Competition. The quintet frequently eliminate the “fourth wall” between musicians and audience by performing from memory, creating an extraordinary connection. This personal performance style, combined with the ensemble’s three-pronged mission of artistry, education, and community-building, lends WindSync its reputation as ”a group of virtuosos who are also wonderful people, too” (Alison Young, Classical MPR).

“Pushing the boundaries of wind quintet performance with youthful, pop-rock sensibility….”

– Winnipeg Free Press

Learn more

windsync.org
Zhenni Li-Cohen

Zenni Li-Cohen

piano

Hailed for her “torrents of voluptuous sound…Li-Cohen impresses as an artist of tremendous conviction, who fascinates even as she provokes“ (Gramophone Magazine), At age 16, she emigrated to the United States and was accepted to study at the Juilliard School, earning Bachelors and Masters degrees in piano performance. Her summers were spent in France, leading to a great love for the music of Claude Debussy, whose Préludes were eventually the subject of her dissertation. After further studies at Yale School of Music, Li-Cohen pursued her Doctoral degree at McGill University in Montréal before earning worldwide recognition as the winner of the 2017 New York Concert Artists Worldwide Debut Audition, Astral Artist’s 2016 National Auditions, the Grieg International Competition in Norway, and the unanimous First Prize at the Concours Musical de France. Li-Cohen is currently the Associate Professor of Piano at University of Alberta. She has performed across the U.S., in Finland, Norway, Germany – and now High River.

 

“…Li-Cohen impresses as an artist of tremendous conviction, who fascinates even as she provokes…”

– Gramaphone Magazine

Learn more

zhennili.com
Jon Kimura Parker  Carnival of The Animals

Jon Kimura Parker

narration

Known for his charisma, energy and dynamic performances, pianist Jon Kimura Parker is the Artistic Director of the Honens International Piano Competition. He has collaborated with legendary rock drummer Stewart Copeland in Off the Score, tango pianist Pablo Ziegler, singer Bobby McFerrin, violinist Cho-Liang Lin, and mezzo-soprano Susan Graham. Winner of the Gold Medal at the 1984 Leeds International Piano Competition, Parker is an Officer of The Order of Canada and has received Honorary Doctorates from the University of British Columbia and the Royal Conservatory of Music, Toronto.

“… a musician with a rich soul and great artistic depth …. a fantastic example of programming that entertains as well as edifies.”

 

Musical Toronto on Jon Kimura Parker

Illia Ovcharenko  High River Gift of Music 2023-24 Season

Illia Ovcharenko

piano

Praised as “technically flawless and impeccably musical” (International Piano), winner of the lauded 2022 Honens International Piano Competition, 21-year-old Ukrainian pianist Illia Ovcharenko has taken the piano world by storm. Ovcharenko embodies Honens’ ideal of the “Complete Artist” with his technical mastery, perseverance against adversity, and an understanding of musical text that is both intellectual and emotional. Highlights of his 2022 / 2023 season include two Carnegie Hall performances and an international tour spanning Brussels, Paris, Liechtenstein, Portugal, Germany, and Canada. Ovcharenko has performed with leading orchestras and participated at music festivals worldwide. He is a recipient of the Presidential Scholarship of Ukraine and is represented by Kanzen Artists.

“Illia Ovcharenko’s solo performances were technically flawless and impeccably musical. He captured the wild emotional swings of Schumann’s Kreisleriana, vaulted effortlessly over the hurdles in Ginastera’s Sonata No. 1 and concluded with a stupendous performance of Liszt’s Sonata in B minor. I’m confident this 21-year-old Ukrainian will have a big career.”

International Piano

Program 

Franck
II: Allegro
from Sonata in A Major

Elgar
Salut d’Amour

Brahms
I: Vivace ma non troppo
from Sonata No. 1 in G Major Op. 78

Chopin
Polonaise in A-flat Major Op. 53 “Heroic”

Albeniz
Tango

Copeland
Celeste

Prokofiev
Dance of the Knights

Nazaroff
Freylakh Medley

Brahms
Hungarian Rhapsody No. 5

Rachmaninov
Suite No. 2 for two pianos Op. 17
I: Introduction
II: Waltz
III: Romance
IV: Tarantella