The “hearth” evokes feelings of warmth, comfort, safety – a place where one curls up with a book and falls into a reverie while gazing into the fire. The hearth is also a play on words to Cumberland singer, composer Joanna Finch, who is collaborating with her friend, pianist Sean Mooney on Dec. 11 to bring her most intimate songs from the heart to perform at a concert at the Abbey Studio in Cumberland. Home is where the hearth is.
Wanting to create a quiet, reflective space where people can sit back and go inward, Finch has drawn inspiration for this concert from her wistful song, Cumberland Snow, composed by Finch and arranged by Mooney for the Valley Christmas Album in 2006 as a fundraiser for The Cumberland Community Forest Society.
Mooney and Finch have shared many stages together since 1996 as musicians and friends including Vancouver Island MusicFest, Filberg Festival, Madame Jojo’s Cabaret, Vancouver Island Music Awards, countless showcases, and private and public concerts.
A full-time piano teacher and musician, Mooney’s remarkable talent for interpreting all styles and eras of music makes him one of the Valley’s most sought after accompanists, playing for the Just In Time jazz choirs, Celebration Singers and as a studio session player on several recordings.
The “amazing Miss Finch” as she has been dubbed, has a clear, sweet and sultry voice that moves smoothly from era and style, with a panache for Latin jazz and European style cabaret. Flute, melodica and an array of other instruments are part of her kit bag.
Joining Finch and Mooney are exceptional musicians: violinist/ trumpeter Blaine Dunaway; guitarist, percussionist and singer Michel Rivero, and drummer Larry Greenwood. The Drunken Rumis, Jesse Gentes and Patrick Desjardins will be playing flutes and drums when people enter, evoking a mystic welcoming with their eastern inspired music. Dancer Jade DeTrey will create a visual interpretation of the music with her sinuous dance forms.
Local poets, writers and storytellers Traci Skuce, Judy Norbury, Marianna La Violette, and Diana Schroeder will be offering their seasonal tales and rhymes to further evoke the quiet reflection of early winter.
Songs and Stories from the Hearth is being presented in part by the Cumberland Culture and Arts Society who are providing refreshments by donation.
Doors open at 2:30 and the 3 p.m. concert goes till about 5:30.
Purchase tickets in Cumberland at Riders Pizza; in Courtenay at Bop City Records; in Comox at Blue Heron Books. Tickets are $15 in advance or $20 at the door, with $5 from every ticket going towards the CCAS.