Kathryn Patricia is a loop pedal violist known for creating immersive soundscapes through the texture-building layers that her instrument produces. A classical-crossover musician, she has performed with the Ottawa Symphony Orchestra, the Ottawa Jazz Orchestra, and Toronto’s Trans-Siberian Orchestra, and has composed new music for theatrical productions.
She is busy as the main performer for her company, Bloom Music Weddings, and is a Teaching Artist with OrKidstra, a social development program that empowers kids from under-served communities by teaching life skills through music. Kathryn has released new music during the pandemic—Selah in March, Inner Roads in May, and Catch The Rising Sun in June—all available on Bandcamp.
We are in both strange and challenging times. It’s wonderful for us to cultivate community in the online space and share our musical influences and inspirations.
Before the pandemic, I was wrapping up a week of shows. I wrote and performed the musical score—written for solo viola and loop pedal—for the production of Halo. The play was the first feature of the 9th Hour Theatre Company’s 10th anniversary season. I love projects that involve multidisciplinary collaboration. It was a wonderful experience working with the cast and crew.
These days, like many of us, I spend a lot of time looking at and interacting through a screen. I am very thankful to have been able to continue to teach both my private students and my students who are part of the social music program, OrKidstra, here in Ottawa.
I have also had the chance to record and release a few EPs on Bandcamp. It has been very rewarding having people interact with my music in a recorded form.
A song I have been listening to a lot is “Unbreakable” by Coco Love Alcorn from her 2016 album Wonderland. I love both the gospel influence and powerful lyrics. Coco also has an amazing voice. It’s a great song to dance to!
Other music that has really impacted me in this season is a recording of an excerpt from composer Adolphus Hailstork’s Two Romances for Viola and Chamber Orchestra. The recording features viola soloist Amadi Azikiwe with an orchestra comprising members of The Harlem Chamber Players conducted by Ariel Rudiakov. I find Hailstork’s compositional style both intimate and beautifully moving; his music has allowed me to enter a reflective space that I have really needed during this time.
Thanks again for reaching out! Hope you and yours are safe and well in this season.
Coco Love Alcorn’s Wonderland
The Canadian singer took a break from recording to raise her daughter, and returned with the 2016 album Wonderland. Toronto Music Report called it “a one in a million pot of gold by a one in a million singer. Its music combines power, grace and invention.” The Edmonton Journal wrote that “it’s hard to listen to Wonderland and not be moved with the sort of visceral joy that old spirituals or gospel songs elicit, except that the Alcorn’s tunes take off from traditional forms with hints of hip hop or jazz”.
Adolphus Hailstork’s “Two Romances” for Viola and Chamber Orchestra
Adolphus Hailstork is an American composer who studied violin, piano, organ, and voice. His works blend musical ideas from both the African American and European traditions. “Two Romances” was written in two versions, one for orchestra and the other for chamber ensemble.