From the Vernon Morning Star
by Donna Wedgewood-Maynes on March 11, 2016 – Link to full article
In its objective to provide diversity and excellence during the 2015-16 concert series, the North Okanagan Community Concert Association (NOCCA) believes it has succeeded with its next performance.
The upcoming concert duo of Kornel Wolak and Chris Donnelly will take to the Vernon Performing Arts Centre stage Sunday, March 20 at 7:30 p.m.
Armed with a clarinet, a piano and their personable stage presence, Wolak and Donnelly present a remarkable blend of traditional classical and jazz music rarely heard in live performance.
Their musical expertise coupled with their humour and personal interaction engage the audience in a very entertaining manner. In short, they make a great team.
Fresh from their successful concert tour of eight border states earlier this year, Wolak and Donnelly look forward to their time with the Vernon audience.
As Wolak humourously suggests, “come and see the weirdos!”
Throughout the program, Wolak and Donnelly also showcase their talent as solo artists.
Highly praised on two continents for his glorious tone, precise technical control, and musical imagination, Polish-born Wolak began piano lessons at age six and took up the clarinet when he was 12.
“I was not forced into music by my parents, both classical musicians. I was encouraged on a regular basis,” he said.
Wolak’s successful university studies in Europe won him a scholarship at Indiana University’s Jacobs School of Music, where he earned a master’s in music. He then pursued advanced orchestral studies at the Glenn Gould School of Music in Toronto in the fall of 2005, earning an artist’s diploma.
“I was inspired not by individual clarinet players, but by former clarinet teachers,” said Wolak.
Tickets for the March 20 performance are available at the Ticket Seller box office, 250-549-7469, www.ticketseller.ca. More info. is at www.nocca.ca.