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Mark Johnston

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Age / âge


Why did you choose your instrument / Pourquoi avez-vous choisi cet instrument ?
I was too small to play the cello which was my first choice.

What are your professional goals? / Décrivez quelques-unes de vos ambitions professionnelles.
As someone who also plays viola and piano conducts and composes my overarching professional goal is to integrate as much of all of those activities into my musical life as possible. I feel my experience in all those fields especially my orchestral experience on the violin and viola would make me a good conductor and my continued experience at NYO will serve that aim.

How do you feel you will benefit from participation in NYO Canada? / Comment pensez-vous que votre participation à NYO Canada puisse vous aider?
The NYOC has already been a huge educational and motivational benefit for me in the years in which I last participated (2003-5). In coming back I am particularly excited to participate again as a leadership scholarship recipient and to realise the potential for growth in my understanding and experience in orchestral leadership that that implies. As an incipient conductor I feel that experience is particularly valuable made only richer by my hope of working as an apprentice conductor with Maestro Lacombe.

What are your interests outside classical music / Avez-vous d’autres intérêts à part la musique classique ?
I am an avid academic and student of knowledge studying mathematics and linguistics in my baccalaureate along with my degree in Violin and minor in Composition; I also read widely both fiction and non-fiction.

Who is your favourite classical musician? / Quel est votre artiste (classique) préféré ?
I can't pick one or even twenty

Who is your favourite non-classical musician? / Quel est votre artiste (non classique) préféré ?
John Lennon

What has recently played on your Mp3? / Qu’écoutez-vous ces jours-ci sur votre Mp3?
I don't have an iPod but the last thing I listened to was the violin sonata by Howard Ferguson. I didn't like it

If you weren't touring with NYO Canada what would you be doing with your summer? / Si vous ne faisiez pas partie de NYO Canada que feriez-vous cet été?
I'd find another summer music programme to give me an excuse to travel.

What is there about you that you think people might be surprised to know? / Y a-t-il quelque chose à votre propos qui est un peu surprenant ou hors de l’ordinaire?
People often seem surprised that I have show at least some normal emotional responses to things. And that I can eat a lot.

For returning members: What is your fondest memory from a previous session and/or tour? / Pour participants vétérans: Quels sont vos souvenirs préférés de la session ou tournée précédente de NYO Canada?
A few include: playing Mahler 4th symphony with Kazuyoshi Akiyama in 2004; being introduced to the LutosBawski Concerto for Orchestra in 2003; and returning in 2006 to the session in Montreal as a ringer for the recording in a year in which so many of my friends participated.