Introducing the Soldiers of Soldier's Tale: Danielle Findlay, Bassoon

Following her collegial studies in Textile Design and then Bassoon Performance at the Conservatoire de Musique de Montréal, Danielle has begun studying Music Education at the

Schulich School of Music of McGill University under the tutelage of Marty Mangrum. Ms. Findlay is Principal Bassoon of the Musicians Of The World Symphony Orchestra, and has played with Opéra Bouffe du Québec, the Primary Reserve Band of Les Fusiliers Mont-Royal, Choeur de La Prairie, L’Orchestre de chambre de la Montérégie, and the Orchestre Symphonique des Jeunes de Montréal, with whom she will tour China in December. Danielle also teaches beginner bassoonists, reedmakers, and contrabassoonists, has held double reed clinics for the Granby Windband (Harmonie Grandby), and regularly plays contrabassoon all over the island of Montreal.

Are you originally from Montreal? If not where are you from and how did you wind up here?

I’m from Saskatchewan, actually! But I have many family members from both sides of the family in and around Montreal. I flew the nest as soon as I graduated from high school, working for the next year in Montreal while staying with an aunt and uncle. Little did I know I would actually stay and pursue my studies here!

Do you have a favourite composer and why?

The trailblazing French impressionist Debussy has to be my favourite. His works paint images of what can only be seen for a fleeting moment. He would intentionally avoid major or minor modes, and instead explored Medieval modes, pentatonic and whole tone scales. It’s obvious that he was a huge influence on the young Igor Stravinsky. Debussy broke rules he saw fit to break, and his works are nothing less than genius. We also share birth dates!

What non-musical interests and hobbies do you have?

Besides following current political events, I play on a couple ultimate frisbee teams, I sew much of my own clothing, and am all sorts of crafty.

Do you have a funny or strange story from performing?

I can’t think of many funny stories I can share publicly, but there was a time I put a spider on a fellow musician who was impossible to work with. At the end of a dress rehearsal, the arthropod came up to my foot, and I figured it would love to be introduced to my equally-pleasant colleague. Sadly but for the better, they never noticed the critter.

How did you wind up playing bassoon?

My mum had me try her favourite members of the orchestra at a band program outside of school, before the usual school band age: french horn was my first, then bassoon, bass clarinet, percussion for a summer, then back to bassoon. Bassoon was the best match, so in my second year playing it again I joined the local youth orchestra, at the age of twelve. It just happened to stick.

You definitely don't want to miss Danielle or the rest of the Soldier's Tale team at La Sala Rossa August 29th at 8pm. Tickets are available at the door but if you click here you can get your tickets online AND at a 10% discount. Group rates available. Stay tuned for more posts and behind the scene sneak peeks of Soldier's Tale


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