I was utterly captivated the first time I heard Astor Piazzolla’s Milonga For Three. Jazz great Rick Wilkins, C.M., who has played a prominent role in my musical life and that of Ensemble Vivant’s, as arranger, producer, composer and overall champion of our music-making, transcribed this work by ear from the original recording. Piazzolla expert Julien Labro, who had heard Ensemble Vivant perform in Detroit, introduced me to a wealth of Piazzolla’s repertoire, and he wrote the other arrangements on this recording for Ensemble Vivant. So much of Piazzolla’s music captured my imagination that choosing for this compilation, which features both known and unknown Piazzolla was difficult.
I gratefully acknowledge the generous support of Rick Wilkins, C.M.; Julien Labro; our producer Claudio Vena; Ensemble Vivant’s Manager Ian Davies and Assistant Manager Norman Hathaway; Opening Day Records (ODEG); Merriam Pianos; EMC2; and FACTOR. The recording of this wonderful music was a labour of love, and we hope our Homage to Astor Piazzolla dances in your hearts forever.
Catherine Wilson, pianist/artistic director Ensemble Vivant
Homage to Astor Piazzolla CD
- Fuga Y Mysterio1
- Adiós Nonino2
- Tango Del Diablo2
- Romance Del Diablo2
- Vayamos Al Diablo2
- Ave Maria1
- Introducción Al Ángel2
- Milonga Del Ángel1
- La Muerte Del Ángel2
- Resurrección Del Ángel2
- Milonga For Three1
- Sharon Prater, cello
- Amy Laing, cello
Tracks 1-13 arranged for Ensemble Vivant by Julien Labro
Track 14 arranged for Ensemble Vivant by Rick Wilkins, C.M.
Catherine Wilson, Piano/Artistic Director
Erica Beston, violin
Sharon Prater, cello
Amy Laing, cello
Dave Young, bass
With Special Guests:
Dave Campion, percussion
Philip Seguin, trumpet
To my heart, your rendition of Piazzolla’s ‘OBLIVION’ is the most touching I have ever heard: Bravo!” (re Catherine Wilson’s performance of OBLIVION on Ensemble Vivant’s Homage to Astor Piazzolla CD, ODEG)
Radio Classique, Montréal
Ensemble Vivant does a fantastic job with the nuevo tango of Astor Piazzolla… captures the passion as well as the verve… Catherine Wilson’s piano gives this music unerring drive and plenty of sparkle… beautiful, poised performances… reveal the deep musicianship and light interpretive touch of these Toronto-based musicians.
Pianist extraordinaire Catherine Wilson and this wonderful group of musicians have totally captured the romance and passion of Astor Piazzolla’s music… This is a truly beautiful CD!
musician, composer, arranger
Ensemble Vivant, one of the best small chamber groups out there…is led by pianist extraordinaire Catherine Wilson…(Homage to Astor Piazzolla) is an exciting and vibrant album that is a sure-fire hit.
This is wonderful playing. The vitality with which the ensemble brings to these pieces is palpable. One needn’t have Latin blood in their veins to discern the commitment these musicians have to this project. (re Ensemble Vivant’s Homage to Astor Piazzolla CD, ODEG)
musician, composer, arranger
This disc sings with heartfelt passion, tenderness, elegance and originality…a precious contribution to the roster of existing Piazzolla recordings…destined to become a classic.
accordionist, bandoneonist, composer, arranger
Ensemble Vivant live up to their name with this lively, spirited and affecting production…flawlessly executed…Ensemble Vivant’s heartbreakingly beautiful rendition of Adios Nonino alone is reason enough to add this disc to the collection – but it’s hardly the only one.
Tango anyone? Ensemble Vivant shines! … one of the best small chamber groups out there is led by pianist extraordinaire Catherine Wilson…Homage to Astor Piazzolla gets 5 out of 5 stars
Ensemble Vivant is led by piano virtuoso Catherine Wilson, and features violinist Erica Beston, cellists Amy Laing and Sharon Prater, Dave Young on bass, with Dave Campion and Philip Seguin manning percussion. It all makes for an exciting and vibrant album (Homage to Astor Piazzallo) that is a sure-fire hit.
Musical Heritage Society Magazine, U.S.A.
…Thanks again for a great performance and wonderful program…molti bravi to Ensemble Vivant… please have Ensemble Vivant return very soon!
de Blasiis CMS at the Hyde
Led by a remarkable pianist, Catherine Wilson, Ensemble Vivant boasts a collection of musicians whose abilities and qualifications are second to none… a diversity of beautifully played music and sound (with vibes… Don Thompson, O.C.) from Bach to Piazzolla to Widor… wonderful interpretations… highlight of the Kelowna Community Concert Association series. I had the pleasure of spending time with the group after the concert and they are a fun, humble and inspiring group of musicians… such tremendous mutual talent and respect within the ensemble… Merci Ensemble Vivant!
musician, composer for B.C. Arts