The Beginning

Something Michelle can definitely say about music, is that she has been involved since a very young age indeed!  Her family has a huge love of music in its many different styles and genres - exposing her to virtually every style there is.. from opera, bluegrass and old time country, to classical, funk, latin, fado, celtic and everything in between.  This has influenced Michelle considerably to encourage her students to be very well-rounded.  Michelle began playing piano at the age of 5, and started the flute at 8. When Michelle was 7 years old, she competed in her first music competition in Kipling, Saskatchewan.

Teaching

Michelle teaches a number of students in flute, whistle, piano and theory. As well Michelle has taught masterclasses and group classes, also called clinics or sectionals, at various schools and other venues. Lessons are fun for both teacher and student. Michelle's students are of all ages. When Michelle's son was in Beavers (Scouts), she was a Leader known as "Songbird" and brought the group fun and silly songs that were requested again and again.  See "Lessons" for more information.

Some years ago Michelle created a flute ensemble called Fluterrific, which enables flute players to get together to rehearse and perform a variety of fun musical genres including contemporary, broadway, jazz, latin and celtic music as well as classical and baroque - and even several of Michelle's own compositions and arrangements.

Performing

Besides competing, Michelle has performed with many different groups with a wide variety of genres including classical, baroque, latin, jazz, classic rock and celtic, to name a few.

Michelle has been a member of the Celtic group Blackthorn since 1994. In that time, she has recorded four albums with them which include a number of her own compositions, and feature her playing her many different instruments as well as providing lead and background vocals.  Blackthorn has been performing and touring in venues all around BC as well as Alberta, Washington, Saskatchewan and other parts of the U.S. since 1989.

For the past twenty years, Michelle has also been a member of the local East-Coast/Classic Rock group Halifax Wharf Rats, performing at numerous venues from pubs to parties to weddings.  In this band, Michelle also plays the piano/keyboards.

In addition, Michelle performs with the Caviar & Lace, Flanagans, Triskellion,  and Fluterrific.  See "Performance" for information on each group.  Michelle also freelances and performs with other groups and artists around town.

musical history

  • Michelle performed as a soloist with the Okanagan Symphonia at age 14
  • For several productions in high school, playing piano and flute for the musicals. Notably, with Bill Clarke on synthesizer
  • As a trio with jazz and flamenco guitarist Dan Obradovic, and hand percussionist Trevor Salloum, Michelle played flute and sang at various Kelowna venues
  • Michelle has accompanied several choirs including Kelowna choir Allegro Singers in concert and Vancouver choir Joyful Voice
    At Expo 86, Michelle performed with three different Kelowna based ensembles
  • Along with harpsichordist, cellist, and recorder player, Michelle was a part of a Kelowna baroque group called 'The Baroque Ensemble'
    Michelle was a member of the pit orchestra for various live performances including “Pirates of Penzance” in Kelowna and Kamloops, and “Trial by Jury” in Kitchener, Ontario
  • Ole! Michelle performed with Tucan which featured renowed Guatemalan composer and performer Luis Galich, at local restaurants and venues. Michelle played the flute, tenor sax, and percussion and sang in Spanish!
  • Michelle competed at the Provincials (Woodwind category representing BC) four years running and in the fifth year, competed at the Nationals
  • Michelle performed with the Auckland Youth Symphony in Auckland, New Zealand while living there for one year on the Rotary Youth Exchange program
  • With keyboards, flute and vocals, Michelle was part of Vancouver-based classic rock/cover band This End Up, who performed at local clubs and restaurants
  • As a duo with Joe Cruz on semi-acoustic guitar, Michelle and Joe performed various events, sometimes sporting specially designed Victorian costumes and played at Dickenzian Christmas concerts
  • On keyboards, Michelle has performed arrangements with multiple highland bagpipe groups, including the RCMP E-Division Highland Bagpipe band, the Vancouver Police Pipe Band amongst others
  • Michelle was Principal Flute and special soloist for the Kelowna Canada Day Symphony at Prospera Place in Kelowna in 2012, performing "Celtic Suite #1" which contained several of Michelle's compositions and arrangements (Performance available to view on YouTube.com/MichelleColinda)