Page 1



The Music Issue

Emily Reid ’09, Brian Christensen ’11, Ian Chen ’07 and Jayne Hammond ’08 on studying music at university

Never Had a Day Job

John Reid

It’s a Hard Rock Life

Three career musicians talk about the challenges and triumphs of life as a pro

Our band director on 25 years of music memories at SMUS

Bryce Soderberg ’98 on touring, his 15-year reunion and mainstream success

Join us for the 2014 Alumni & Friends

Golf Invitational September 8, 2014

Victoria Golf Course

Register Online: Thanks to our 2013 golfers! 1












1. Justin Stephenson ’80, Cathy Stephenson, Heidi Edgar and Blair Nelson ’97 2. Catherine Dorazio and Mickael Schmitt 3. John White, Nick Grant ‘84, Beau Beauchamp and Gisèle Di Iorio 4. Jill Knudsen ‘04 5. Blair Hagkull, Tracey Hagkull, Vanessa Keeler Young ‘84 and Steve Keeler 6. Danielle Topliss ‘91, Michelle Driscoll, Joan Snowden and Barbara Duncan 7. Susanna Crofton ’80 8. Mat Geddes ‘93 9. Tyler Barkely, Faiz Ahmad, Michael Murgatroyd and Ted Balderson ‘82 10. Peter Johnston 11. Niko Mavrikos ‘07, Yianni Mavrikos ‘07, Jesse Kliman ‘07 and Craig Bryden 12. Lindsay Brooke

School Ties is distributed to more than 5,000 members of the St. Michaels University School community, including current families, friends, and current and past staff and students. The goal of the publication is to communicate activities and initiatives and provide articles and reports on the alumni community. If you have any comments or suggestions regarding this publication, please email Published by the Advancement Office St. Michaels University School 3400 Richmond Road Victoria, British Columbia Canada V8P 4P5 Telephone: 250-592-2411 Admissions: 1-800-661-5199 Email: School Ties magazine and archive copies can be found in the publications section of the school website: If you are interested in attending alumni events, visit the online Calendar of Events at Editors: Erin Anderson, Laura Authier, Gillian Donald ’85, Peter Gardiner, Darin Steinkey Contributors: Erin Anderson, Laura Authier, Gary Barber, Gillian Donald ’85, Nicole Edgar ’07, Peter Gardiner, Dorothy Hawes, Ian Hyde-Lay, Bob Snowden, Darin Steinkey, Brenda Waksel, Rob Wilson and SMUS community members. We apologize for any omissions. Photos: Erin Anderson, Stephanie Anter, Mark Catto, Gordon Chan, Gillian Donald ‘85, Mat Geddes ‘93, Peter Gardiner, Alex Gillett, Harumi Hart, Kent Leahy-Trill, Richard Primrose, Josh Semrok, Darin Steinkey, Mark Sudul, Dan Thompson, Mandy Wiltshire

Contents 2 The Nature of Music

Bob Snowden on music seen and heard.

3 Highlights from the SMUS Review News stories from all three campuses published on the SMUS Review.

5 Athletics Highlights Sports highlights from April to December 2013.

7 Arts Highlights Arts highlights from April to December 2013.

9 A Lasting Legacy The life of Christine Duke ’86.

10 John Reid: A Finale The band director looks back on 25 years of music at SMUS.

12 An Education in Music Four music majors describe their postsecondary experiences and future plans.

On the cover: Emily Reid ’09

19 It’s a Hard Rock Life Rock star Bryce Soderberg ’98 on touring internationally and the evolution of the music industry.

21 The Amazing Ann Makosinski Our Google Science Fair winner met up with Andrew Lampard ’02 after her Tonight Show appearance.

22 The Class of 2013 Find out where our newest group of alumni are spending their first year after SMUS.

24 Distinguished Alumnus

16 Never Had a Day Job

Douglas Freeman ’88 is recognized.

A jazz musician, classical violist and trombonist on the realities of a career in music.

25 Alumni Receptions Connecting with alumni from Tokyo to London.

26 Alumni Updates News from our alumni around the world.

Design and Layout: Reber Creative Printed in Canada W by Hillside Printing Ltd., Victoria, BC

Cover photo: Erin Anderson

School Ties - Spring 2014 • 1

This issue of School Ties was printed on Opus Dull recycled paper made with 30% post-consumer waste and bleached without the use of chlorine. By selecting this paper, St. Michaels University School has saved 4 trees, 436 gal of water, 569 kilowatt hours of electricity, 720 lbs of greenhouse gases, 3 lbs of HAPs, VOCs and AOX combined, one cubic yard of landfill space, and 583 miles travelled in the average North American car.


The Nature of by Bob Snowden



ore than once I have stood alone in the Junior School music room. Along one wall, the cellos and basses are lined up. A piano sits off centre, ready for students to gather around it on the floor. Violins, black cases and bows lean at less than careful angles in their slots. The room is silent but it is far from empty: the atmosphere strains like a swollen balloon. Soon, students will pick these instruments up. If it is September, and these students are in Grade 4, many of them will pick up a violin for the first time. They will learn how to hold it under their chins, how to curl their fingers over the neck. Every single one of them will run his or her fingers over the smooth wood whose physics they may one day discover, when they are twice the size they are now. However, understanding the physics won’t explain their experience of the violin. We want them to love their music, but some of their learning will be hard. Their first concert will be a clinic in the fundamentals. Although their teacher Mrs. Smith might wish for better attention at this concert, these nine-year-olds have probably never focused more intently on anything in their lives. I have listened to more of their first concerts than I can count. Some of their parents will have tears in their eyes; they can hardly believe the sound their children are making. It is music. They have been singing for some time. The bell choir has produced sounds with something other than their voices. Mrs. Goodman and Mr. Frater have done their part to introduce them to the beginnings of rigour – singing or playing notes together, in time, even in harmony. The miracle of the Grade 5

opera will deepen the notion that hard work and repetition can transform telling a story. I have also stood, alone, in the quiet of the Middle School strings room and band room. In Grade 6, Mr. Farish will bring brass and woodwinds into the students’ musical world. Jazz happens, and contemporary musical theatre will once again take centre stage. The Middle School strings ensemble will be quite polished and Mrs. Smith will have to do much less tuning of violins. By Grade 9, some will have settled into a preference, perhaps for concert band or choir, while others will continue to play multiple instruments. I don’t haunt empty music halls but a few years ago I did stand in the band, strings and choral rooms in Schaffter Hall before it opened. The rooms have lofty, beamed ceilings and grainy panelled walls. This building voices the scale and quality of our music program. While Ms. Williams, Mr. Butterfield and Mr. Clements (and, before him, Mr. Reid) conduct much of the music here, Schaffter Hall is very much a building that the students own, and where they feel at home. Orchestras, choirs, concert bands – more musicians than you would think a school could muster – fill the place, but it is also full of acoustic and electric sounds, many of the student’s own making and composition. They perform all over the place: in Chapel, at the McPherson Playhouse, in the Copeland Lecture Theatre, in the quad – everywhere. They make music as readily as they breathe, they enjoy it and they love to share it. It takes so much effort to make it so natural.

2 • School Ties - Spring 2014

“We want them to love their music, but some of their learning will be hard.”


The SMUS Review covers news from all three schools and publishes weekly on our website. The following highlights are taken from stories published from April to December 2013. You can read more about these stories at



Highlights from the SMUS Review

Theresa Cho ’13 and Jacky Han emcee a trivia competition as part of Brain Awareness Week, a school-wide initiative to spread knowledge about how human minds work.

Kindergarten student Christopher HoydalPayne practices using an iPad with his Grade 5 buddy Sebastian Huxley.

May Lindon Carter ’13 drops by the Junior School to talk poetry with Grade 4 students, including Tori Farkas, Nadia Fracy and Amalia Mairet.

Boarders Ted Ye and Diego Olivares race to fill their section of pipe with water to win points at the annual House Olympics.


Valedictorian Ethel Kiggundu speaks at the Closing Ceremonies for the Class of 2013.

Alumni Susie Wall ’91, Monica Rossa ’09 and Chris Noel ’97 share their wisdom as part of the communications and new media session of Career Week.

School Ties - Spring 2014 • 3

Mr. Duncan Frater and Emma Coetze improvise a scene in a drama-focused Exploratory class.



Mrs. Nancy Mollenhauer and the Grade 8 leaders kick off the school year with Where Everyone Belongs, a program to help new students settle in to life at the Middle School.


To accommodate our growing Junior School, a new Grade 1 classroom was created with many features to help students learn and play.

Jamie Boyle and Matty McColl listen to keynote speaker Shane Koyczan at the Youth Addressing Local Poverty conference, which drew nearly 150 participants from almost 20 schools.

The Middle School Ecowarriors helped remove invasive species on Middle School Service Day, an annual event where all students in Grades 6 to 8 spend the day volunteering in the community.


Grade 11 student Puroshini Pather (left) plays her original composition “Hourglass” with the Senior School orchestra at the SMUS Remembrance Day ceremony.

4 • School Ties - Spring 2014

Kindergarten students perform “Christmas Don’t Be Late” at the all-school Christmas assembly.

The Grade 6 French classes performed an original play en français, telling a revamped version of Goldilocks set on Mars.

Our athletics program focuses on team work, personal achievement and skill development. Here are some of the standout moments from April to December 2013. You can read more about these events by visiting the SMUS Review at and choosing the Athletics category.




Athletics Highlights

Senior Girls Soccer Shinai Sorensen defends the SMUS goal in the student versus alumni soccer match-up on Alumni Weekend. Star striker Marta Bakowska-Mathews ‘11 (left) scored three goals, leading the alumni team to a 3-1 victory. Senior Boys Rugby First XV Captain Sam Reid clears the ball from the scrum en route to a 10-5 comeback victory in the annual Boot Game. Grade 8 Rugby The Grade 8 rugby team hoists the newly christened “Kuklinski Trophy,” named in honour of their coach Bruce Kuklinski, after they defeated Bayside at the Lower Island Jamboree. Track and Field Saeed Shokoya beats the pack by a few lengths to win the BC Provincial 100m final in 11.08 seconds.


School Ties - Spring 2014 • 5

Cricket Jamison Schulz-Franco bowls at the T20 Cricket competition. The SMUS team won the Jack Kyle trophy and players Jamison and Trenton Schulz-Franco won awards for bowling and leadership respectively.




Senior Girls Field Hockey With only eight seconds to go in the ISA final, Jenna Dhillon, Aveen Glen and Rylee Boyle connect for the winning goal and the championship, 1-0.

Junior Boys Soccer Grade 10 player Loris Friedli surges past a Brentwood defender in the final of the Junior Boys ISA tournament, which SMUS won.


6 • School Ties - Spring 2014

Grade 9 Rugby Collingwood put pressure on SMUS in the final frantic minutes of the Grade 9 rugby ISA final, but the boys hung on to win 34-22 and ended their season undefeated.

Senior Girls Volleyball Beta Willeboordse was a force on the court as the Blue Jags defeated Esquimalt, Spectrum and Reynolds to claim the City AAA title and the #1 seed in the Island Finals.

Senior Boys Basketball SMUS rallied after Brentwood jumped out to an 18-12 lead seven minutes into the ISA Championships and went on to win 66-51 with 21 points from Jason Scully.

Cross-Country Grade 5 athlete Sienna Pike, one of 45 cross-country runners at the Junior School, picks up speed at the first Victoria Independent Schools Sports Association race of the season.

Rowing The SMUS rowing teams claimed five gold medals and an overall 2nd place finish in the Victoria City Rowing Championship Regatta.


Arts Highlights April

Musicians from all three schools came together for the Cross Campus Strings Concert, which ended with the original composition “If I Should Fall” by Brian Christensen ‘11.

May Senior School artists created these balloon pieces as part of a collaborative art program from London’s Tate Modern gallery, which paired up schools around the world to work on specific projects.

Claudia Murr and her fellow Grade 4 choral students sing from the pews at the Cross-Campus Choral Concert at the Christ Church Cathedral.



Our singers, musicians, actors and artists continue to do our school proud on stage and canvas. Of the many recent creative triumphs, here are a few of our favourites. You can read more about these stories in the SMUS Review at

Grade 12 musician Shanna Fong plays a piano concerto by Robert Schumann at the Concerto Concert, where several soloists perform alongside the SMUS orchestra.


Grade 5 students perform iSPY, a fun musical that combines detectives, fairy tales and fables.

School Ties - Spring 2014 • 7

Grade 11 actress Ellen Law plays Hermia alongside Jack Hayes ’12 as Lysander in a professional production of A Midsummer Night’s Dream.




The Vocal Jazz Ensemble dazzles at the Small Ensembles Concert.

Grade 8 student Jose Tostado selects pieces from an old computer to repurpose into art as part of his chosen Exploratory class, The Art of Recycling.

Grade 4 artist Ava Galloway created this Picasso-inspired sun out of clay. The SMUS production of The Diary of Anne Frank opens at the Metro Studio Theatre.


8 • School Ties - Spring 2014

Grade 2 students Alexander Hann and Alejandro Trejo sing at the Primary Christmas Concert.

Grade 7 student Amy Zhang performs a violin sonata unaccompanied at the Grade 7 and 8 Strings concert, which featured a range of pieces from ragtime to jazz.

While many of us are familiar with the Christine Duke Theatre, two recent visitors reminded us about the student who inspired it. by Dorothy Hawes


nyone at all familiar with our school will likely have spent some time in the Christine Duke Theatre, a much-appreciated venue that has hosted everything from the Keep the Beat music marathon to Cops for Cancer fundraisers. What many of us are probably not quite so familiar with is the story behind the theatre, namely Christine Duke ’86 herself. Christine arrived at SMUS in 1983 as one of three girls joining boarding in Grade 10. She passed away on January 14, 1986, just shy of her Grade 12 graduation. This past September, the SMUS Service Council invited Christine’s parents to speak to Senior School students in chapel, providing us with a glimpse of this talented young woman whose exceptional faith truly defined her character. Below is some of what Carrol Duke shared about her daughter and the enthusiasm she had for life at SMUS: Right from the beginning of her short life, Christine was always in a hurry. She loved life and there was never enough time in a day to fit in all that she wished to do. Christine attacked everything with zest – she was a good student, athlete and an exceptional musician. That ‘zest for life’ and a great sense of humour made Christine a lot of fun to be around. Overriding all her life was Christine’s deep Christian faith. Due to her gregarious nature and desire to be involved in so many things, SMUS was the ideal place for her. Christine loved the academic challenge and standards it demanded. The teachers were exceptional. She was able to fit it all in! In a letter home, Christine wrote, “I feel like I just started to live!” Considering this girl was life personified, it was a shock to find in March of 1985 that Christine had

acute lymphoblastic leukemia. In 1985, the five-year survival rate from this form of leukemia was only 5% and it remains a disease with a very poor survival rate. For 10 months, Christine fought against the disease – a battle in which she displayed the courage and determination with which she had lived her whole life. True to form, she was always more concerned about the rest of us and her friends. She had a ferocious desire to get back to SMUS! Along with the staff and students at SMUS, Carey Denholm orchestrated a massive support program for Christine when she was ill. There was not a single day that Christine did not receive letters, cards, gifts, phone calls or flowers. Even the Junior School students sent her art projects. She felt so loved!


A Lasting Legacy

Christine’s parents came to speak just before we held our service day for cancer research. As students and staff heard about Christine’s love of the school and the impact her life had on our community, they were also reminded of the lives that could be saved through our fundraising efforts. Thirty years after she first arrived at SMUS, Christine’s legacy can be found throughout the school – in the fundraising we do for cancer, in our flourishing arts programs and in the memories of her teachers and classmates, like fellow musician Lorien Benet Hart ’86. The next time you find yourself in the Christine Duke Theatre or listening to a strings performance by our students, take a moment to remember the inspiring life and deep faith of Christine Duke.

School Ties - Spring 2014 • 9

SCHOOL NEWS 10 • School Ties - Spring 2014


Finale 25 Years in the Making

When John Reid retired last June, he left behind a quarter-century of music and memories. Here, he shares some of his favourite moments and talks about his teaching philosophy. by Darin Steinkey “Have you ever walked around the block backwards?” I’d just sat down to coffee with recently retired Senior School band teacher John Reid. He looks relaxed, with an easy smile. As you might expect, I answer in the negative and he launches into a story about how he would lose around 20 pounds every spring when he worked in Taber, Alberta, leading the marching band program. “When you take 120 kids out on the street to practice, it’s quite something,” he says. “I was out every class with a different band. Your legs are killing you, your muscles are killing you. You’re out four to five times a day for 45 minutes, but it’s good for you.” That close involvement with the kids in rehearsal is a snapshot of John’s philosophy of teaching: don’t be afraid to get your hands dirty. That sort of leadership was very important to him. “I would sit with the kids and play French horn every Tuesday morning when Donna Williams was conducting for many years,” he says. “The kids then see you in a different light; you become one of them watching another conductor.” After his hectic SMUS life wound down last June, John spent the first several months of retirement learning to relax. “After 43 years of work, you can’t just stop,” he says. “I automatically began mentally preparing for the new school year in August, but had to keep reminding myself that there was no reason to. September was strange with all the kids returning, but I love retirement. It’s been very good to me so far.” Though John has become almost synonymous with SMUS music, his own music journey began a long time ago and a great distance away. The Scotland native graduated from the Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Jordanhill College in Glasgow before rising to head of music at nearby Hillhead High School. John’s formative years in music were heavily influenced by Dr. George McPhee MBE, a former professor and

choir director/organist of Paisley Abbey Choir (of which John was a member), and jazz bassist Ricky Fernandez, a well-known jazz man in the Glasgow scene of the time. Since coming to Canada, John has been that influence for countless students coming up through the Junior, Middle and Senior School music programs, who have benefitted from his ongoing love of all types of music as well as his passion for teaching. Challenging his students was his main philosophy and one of the ways in which he made them better musicians. He accomplished this in part by taking students out of the SMUS bubble and into the world of professional performances. John put his students on stage with some of the world’s best musicians. His Middle School choirs appeared with pianist and composer Frank Mills at the Royal Theatre twice. They also shared the stage with David Foster and his “friends” – Celine Dion, Paul Anka and Kenny G – on a televised special for CBC. There aren’t too many students that could say they have performed with that calibre of talent on such a public stage. “Performing gives students a real sense of achievement, just like when they are on the rugby field or acting in the musical,” says John. “It’s their time to shine.” While his last 10 years at SMUS were spent as the band director at the Senior School, his career at the school began with teaching both band and choir at the Middle School. In fact, one of the events he is most proud of was the annual Christmas choral performance at the Ocean Point Resort and Spa, which he orchestrated for 12 years. This January, when he filled in for Middle School choir teacher Duncan Frater, he says he felt a bit of déjà vu in his old classroom. Though John never taught at the Junior School, he took his Senior School students there every year before the Small Ensembles concert, giving his students a chance to play for an audience and introducing the younger students to the Middle and Senior School band instruments.

John Reid at his final SMUS concert.

appears on page 12 of this issue, credits John with shaping his musical journey. “John gave me a couple of opportunities to sing solos and practice my instruments in a safe but challenging atmosphere,” said Brian, when he returned to SMUS last year. “This directly influenced my first year at music school and subsequently my vocal major. It completely changed what I was going to do.” The 2008 performance of “Battle Hymn of the Republic,” with solos by trumpeter Chris Fenje ’13 and vocalist Andy Erasmus ’10, is also a favourite of John’s. Both performers went on to study music (at Northwestern University and the University of Toronto, respectively) with considerable experience in front of large audiences. John believes that the key to being able to mount some of those memorable performances is the support the music department receives from the school. With seven full-time music instructors from K-12, music is clearly a priority at SMUS. “I don’t know any other school that has such a robust program,” he says. “We start them early in the strings program and challenge them all the way through to graduation.” Given the reach of the music program, it isn’t surprising that a few alumni decide to continue on that path when it comes time to move on to university. After almost 45 years working in music, John has some sage advice for students embarking on a career in music. “A career in music performance is very competitive,” he says. “Leave your options open; be able to diversify.”


At the Senior School, John focused on band and continued to challenge both himself and his students, writing arrangements and helping the department to mount ambitious projects. He taught with professional scores and, again, made sure his students spent lots of time on stage. He feels it helped them earn a sense of satisfaction. John’s belief in his students’ abilities and willingness to put them to the test is never more evident than in the annual Senior School musicals. If you’ve ever been to any, you know that they resemble professional performances and the music is no exception. As musical director of Les Misérables and My Fair Lady, John says some of the audience members were astounded by the level of playing. They were amazed to find out that they were not listening to a professional orchestra, but one composed of students. “It’s important at this level that we are working on the real music as opposed to editions of it,” says Donna Williams, head of the Music department. “It’s part of their education to see what is put in front of professional musicians.” John echoes those comments. “It’s a challenging program and the kids respond to that,” he says. “They work harder to get the music right.” In the case of a few alumni, that challenge led to further education and careers in music. John considers the performance of “Mull of Kintyre” in 2010, featuring Brian Christensen ’11 as the vocal soloist, to be one of his Senior School highlights. Brian, who also

“It’s a challenging program and the kids respond to that.”

School Ties - Spring 2014 • 11

John Reid with the Middle School choirs and Frank Mills on the CBC


An Education in


Four recent alumni chose to take their passion for music all the way to university. Now at the dawn of their careers, they talk about the challenges and value of a post-secondary degree in music. by Erin Anderson

For all the tireless work of the SMUS

12 • School Ties - Spring 2014

University Counselling department, Emily Reid ’09 found her school of choice, Belmont University, in the back of Rolling Stone. “I just said, ‘yes,’” she recalls. “Best decision I ever made!” Choosing to pursue a degree in music presents some unique risks and challenges. The tuition is the same as for many other fields, but the career prospects (and pay grade) can be less than encouraging. When Emily headed down to Nashville, Tennessee to attend Belmont, she had a very pragmatic view of her education: she enrolled in the music business program with a plan to work behind the scenes in the music industry. She didn’t see herself as a

future singer-songwriter. In fact, she recorded her first EP at the urging of a friend, mostly as a way to pass the time in her new home. “We’d just hole up in this little cockroach-infested studio and make music,” she says. “Once that EP was done, I realized how much I enjoyed the process.” Not that Emily didn’t already have a connection to music; it’s always been a part of her life and it certainly was a part of her time at SMUS. By Grade 12, she was in chamber choir, the vocal jazz ensemble, the leading lady in West Side Story and on the Arts Council. “SMUS really helped me learn how to study and how to be involved in as many things as I could possibly be without keeling over,” she says. “It

Emily Reid ‘09 performs a medley of her songs at the Cross Campus Band Concert

was an amazing school and I owe a lot of my creative development to the music program.” Belmont proved to be the right fit for her as well. It was academically stimulating, but very hands-on and internship-oriented. It was collegiate but also very personal. “Belmont was everything I needed it to be,” says Emily. “There was something going on all the time.” After graduating from Belmont, Emily returned to SMUS for the final concert of John Reid, performing a medley of tracks off her first EP with the SMUS bands. Like Emily, Brian Christensen ’11 also returned to where his music education began, having his original composition “If I Should Fall” performed by the school orchestra.

As a SMUS student, Brian was a member of that orchestra, but his real connection to music was formed in his free time. From Grade 8, when he first started playing guitar, to his Grade 12 year, his main interest was playing with a handful of other students. Some of Brian’s former bandmates include Andrew Taylor ’12, Oliver Brooks ’10 and Rowan MacKenzie ’12, who went on to form the band Leisure Suit. “It was a really great environment for learning and sharing – some of those guys turned me on to a whole new side of music,” he says. “Ms. Williams very intelligently bought a bunch of guitars and amps, so we could go and play whenever we wanted to.” With a lot of musicians around, Brian says many students who grew up playing classical music eventually transferred those skills to pop music through events like acoustic concerts and Keep the Beat. Those experiences also influenced his post-secondary plans, as he wanted a different kind of musical education. “I love classical music, but I wanted something a little more contemporary and practical,” he says. “I find that the university system really caters to classical

Brian Christensen ‘11

“I think that most people underestimate how difficult a music degree can be.” – Jayne “Donna was my teacher for orchestra and vocal jazz, and I learned so much about interpretation and musicianship from her,” says Jayne. One of her favourite memories from SMUS was singing in Cuba while on tour with Ms. Williams and the vocal jazz ensemble. “I always had it in the back of my mind that I wanted to pursue music in post-secondary, but I seriously began considering it in Grade 10,” says Jayne.

School Ties - Spring 2014 • 13

“At a certain point, all I wanted to do was music.” – Brian

“I became involved in as many groups as I could,” says Jayne, who counts the vocal jazz ensemble, the chamber choir, the orchestra and the jazz band among her ensembles. She even played one of her own songs at the legendary Hermann’s Jazz Club with teacher Hugh Fraser ’76 in her backing band. She also has fond memories of choir teacher Madeleine Humer (“the energy and enthusiasm she brings to music education still amazes me”) and Donna Williams.


Jayne Hammond ’08 (centre) in The Merry Wives of Windsor at the Victoria Conservatory of Music

music, a field in which very few people get the opportunity to work.” It was Head of Music Donna Williams who told him about MacEwan University (then Grant MacEwan) which offered a close-knit community and small class sizes – much like SMUS – and had a transfer program to the Berklee College of Music in Boston. At MacEwan, Brian spent over 12 hours a day at school. He took courses in ear-training, song-writing, music technology and vocal performance, which covered everything from vocal technique to how to present yourself on stage. In second year, he took composition, where he learned how to write for every instrument, including an entire orchestra. His experience was so positive, that Lindon Carter ’13, one of the students Brian used to jam with, went there on Brian’s recommendation. As for Brian’s decision to pursue music, it was a natural fit. “I was learning a lot in my writing and literature and history classes,” he says of his time at SMUS. “But, at a certain point, all I wanted to do was music.” For Jayne Hammond ’08, music was a part of life from an early age. “I was always the loudest kid in the choir in elementary school,” she recalls. Piano, violin and guitar lessons soon followed and she came to SMUS specifically for the music program.


“Once I accepted that my favourite parts of my day were the parts that I spent singing, it all fell into place.” When it came time to choose a school, Jayne was advised by her voice teacher to focus on the teacher you want to work with rather than the school. She eventually settled on Wilfrid Laurier University for the chance to study opera with Kimberly Barber. Jayne can even recall the exact moment she decided on Laurier. A few weeks after her audition, she went to see Kimberly in Pacific Opera Victoria’s production of Regina. As she walked towards the theatre, she heard her name yelled from across the street and turned to see Kimberly. “I realized right then and there that Laurier would offer the kind of personal working relationship with my professors that I needed to grow as a singer,” she says. Her prediction proved true. Laurier exceeded her expectations, offering numerous opportunities to perform as well as student support every step of the way. Support is important, because earning a music degree is no easy feat. Not only do students like Jayne have private lessons and ensembles, they also have to complete countless musicianship, theory and music history classes. As a classical singer, Jayne also had to study languages, drama, audition techniques and body mechanics.

14 • School Ties - Spring 2014

“The lack of communication through words I made up for in music.” – Ian “I think most people underestimate how difficult a music degree can be,” says Jayne. “It is a really well-rounded education and teaches you countless skills that are transferable to any job, music or otherwise. You learn to present yourself with confidence and to take constructive criticism in stride.” Ian Chen ’07 was also influenced by the instructors and teachers he would be able to work with when it came to settling on a university at which to pursue music.

Ian Chen ’07

Cornell University offered a chance to learn from some of the best musicians in the world. “I studied composition with Pulitzer Prize-winning composer Steven Stucky, took one-on-one conducting lessons with Prof. Chris Kim, and studied in many fields of music that I was previously unfamiliar with,” says Ian. His courses covered subjects as diverse as jazz improvisation, music psychology, electronic music, orchestration, music of the African Diaspora, and digital audio design and production. Outside of the orchestra, wind ensemble, percussion ensemble and a rock band he started with some friends, Ian also founded Cornell’s first and only Chinese Music Ensemble. “Although it was never my priority,” he says, “I always had music in mind when applying to colleges, perhaps because music had been such a large part of my life at SMUS.” Ian was involved in almost everything music-related at SMUS. A member of both the school band and the orchestra as well as both a percussionist and a violinist with the Greater Victoria Youth Orchestra, Ian still found time to play drums in a rock band with friends. He and his brother Eric were also invited to play on special occasions from time to time, including marimba solo pieces in Chapel and, once, hammering dozens of wine glasses filled with water in a performance

with the Victoria Children’s Choir (under the direction of choir director Madeleine Humer). “When I joined SMUS in Grade 8, I had only moved to Canada from Taiwan the year before, and barely spoke any English,” Ian recalls. “The lack of communication through words I made up for in music and I was good at it.” Band director John Reid took a liking to Ian and introduced him and Eric to many musical groups inside and outside of SMUS, including the Provincial Honour Band, GVYO and the school musicals. Ian cites the musicals as one of his fondest memories from SMUS. He participated every year. “I loved the adrenaline rush of putting up a great show and the familylike atmosphere with everyone involved,” he says. “In a way, I think my love for working on large-scale collaborative art works such as films, video games, and theatre productions must be rooted in those experiences.” Looking back, Ian admits it’s not really surprising that even though he had always planned to apply to medical schools after college, when the time finally came, music won out. “The day after I took the Medical College Admissions Test, I sat myself down and really looked at my choices. What kind of lifestyle do I prefer? What kind of challenges and obstacles do I want for myself?” says Ian. “In the end,

“Right now, my mantra is to keep doing as many different things as I can so I continue to grow as a musician in a variety of directions,” he says. “Later in life, something will stick out to me.” Currently, Brian is recording an EP as a solo artist and hopes to transfer to Berklee for September of 2015 for their contemporary writing and production program. “It’s possible to be a working musician – and just work in music – and have a steady income,” says Brian. “It’s not as far-fetched as people think. It’s getting tougher, but there’s always work.” After graduating from Wilfred Laurier, Jayne workshopped a new opera in Toronto with Tapestry New Opera, did an intensive opera program in Edmonton and spent five weeks studying Italian in Florence. Her education continues: she’s been studying at the Victoria Conservatory of Music since September, trying to solidify her vocal technique through voice lessons and the advanced voice workshop.

“Whenever anyone asked me what I wanted to do after I finished my degree, I told them that I wanted to sing opera, but I never quite believed it myself,” says Jayne. Two years later, her outlook has changed. “I am passionate about this art form and, just like every artist, I am hoping that one day my passion will be what pays the bills.”


I went with music because I like the unknown and the possibilities that I can create within it.” After Cornell, Ian went on to earn his master of music degree in music composition from NYU and has since relocated to Los Angeles. He’s currently pursuing a career in film scoring. “I’ve been focusing on writing for films, television and video games and establishing myself mainly as a film composer,” he says. “A few of the films I’ve worked on have gotten great reviews, winning awards in film festivals around the globe.” Brian Christensen also has found work in composing music for film, among other things. Currently living in Edmonton, he works for a DJ company, teaches both voice and guitar and plays with local bands. Brian has also stayed involved in theatre, playing Gerry in the musical The Full Monty and Justin Timberlake in Spearsical: The Musical at the Edmonton Fringe Festival.

“It took me a long time to admit that I really want to be an artist and a songwriter.” – Emily This coming fall, Jayne will begin auditioning for workshops, competitions, performances and opera programs across Canada and possibly abroad. While she still hopes to eventually do a master’s degree and spend time studying in Europe, for the moment she is diving into the world of professional opera. “Music is a scary thing to devote your life to,” says Jayne. “I remember Donna Williams saying that pursuing a career in music is a bit like taking a leap of faith into a black hole.” In January 2014, Emily Reid released her second EP, Drifter, after a crossCanada tour that included numerous television appearances on CTV and Shaw TV. Currently living in Toronto, she divides her time between making music and waiting tables. “I’m working as hard as I can and we will see how things unfold,” she says. “It took me a long time to admit that I really want to be an artist and a songwriter. I’m just proud to stand on my own two feet and know that this is what I want to do.” School Ties - Spring 2014 • 15

Emily Reid ’09 released her new EP, Drifter, in January


Never had a

Day Job

Three alumni – a jazz musician, classical violinist and a jack-of-all-trades trombonist – talk about the joys and perils found in life as a professional musician. by Laura Authier


orien Benet Hart ’86 is blunt when students tell her they want to pursue a career in music. “I consider it my duty to talk them out of it – I tell them: ‘if you can see yourself doing anything else, you have to do that first because the odds are against you making it as a musician.’” Lorien plays in the second violin section of the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra, one of approximately 20 orchestras in the US that can provide a musician with a salary and benefits that can support a family. In Canada, she estimates there are maybe three. By her reckoning, that represents 2200 musicians at most, which is why she says the cliché of the starving actor waiting tables is equally applicable to musicians. “You have to be willing to work two or three jobs to support your art.” For jazz musician Ashley Wey ’00, that need to hustle to survive is why they call it the music business. “It’s like running your own business – you’re never on salary so it’s necessary to plan your life so that you always have work,” she says. “Performing is the easiest part.”

16 • School Ties - Spring 2014

“Music is an international language that needs to be shared.” – Hugh Normally working on several projects at once, Ashley divides her time between music-making and the activities required to get her music out there. “I run my own website, book gigs, and do my own promo,” she says. “Juggling all the hats you have to wear as a musician is definitely challenging.”

Hugh Fraser ’76

Hugh Fraser ’76 has supported himself all his life with his music. As a teenager, he bought a trombone with wages from a bellhop job, and went on to make an easy $40 by playing it at a concert in Beacon Hill Park. “From that moment on,” he says, “I was hooked.” Inspired by his father, who was a percussionist in the 30s and 40s, Hugh started playing the drums at age six, later adding piano and trombone to his repertoire. When he entered SMUS in 1973, the school’s music program was small, but Hugh expanded his opportunities by leading a rock band called Tuesday Night and organizing school dances featuring the band. By the time he graduated, Hugh found that the combination of his own activities and the music education he received at SMUS from Norman Hurrle – a graduate of the Royal College of Organists in London and the choir master at Christ Church Cathedral – had given him the equivalent of a bachelor’s degree in music theory and composition. Like Hugh, Ashley’s dreams of a career in music started at a young age.

“When I was four, I saw myself on big stages – I knew I would play piano and sing,” she says. “I think my mom always knew I would never have a day job.” Performing her first gig in Grade 8, Ashley later joined the Island Big Band, playing at small clubs like Swan’s, Hermann’s and the Millennium Jazz Club. “It was me and 15 men in their 60s – it was like I had a bunch of grandfathers,” she remembers. By the age of 16 she was working steadily, making a couple hundred dollars a week. She was also winning scholarships, including the $2000 Fraser MacPherson scholarship, of which she was the youngest recipient. “Between scholarships and gigs,” she says, “I realized I would do alright.” Unlike Hugh, Ashley attended SMUS at a time when the school had a strong music program. “Jazz ensembles really prepared me for performing,” Ashley says. “I learned jazz standards and how to improvise. Our teacher Don McKay took our ensemble to nationals and many festivals.” Strings teacher Donna Williams also encouraged Ashley to gain experience in pit bands, which led her to play for

four but quit because she didn’t want to practice. Her mother enticed her back with concerts and Suzuki play-ins, where groups of young musicians played together. In spite of rekindling her passion for the violin, Lorien continued to distance herself from the prospect of a becoming a career musician. Just like Hugh and Ashley, Lorien grew up familiar with the life. Her mother was head music librarian at the University of Victoria and her home acted as a social hub for Victoria’s music community. “I grew up knowing musicians in Victoria,” Lorien recalls. “I saw how frustrated they were in a small market with a small orchestra and a small salary.” She continued to play but treated music casually. “My mother and teachers called me the ‘heart-attack kid’ because I never seemed ready for concerts but I always managed to pull it together for the performance.” At SMUS, Lorien was very involved in music, particularly with the string quartet she started with Gillian Donald ’85, Betsy Donald ’86 and Christine Duke ’86, whom Lorien remembers as “a ray of sunshine” and to whom she dedicated her Grade 12 recital. When the time came to choose a university and a major, Lorien chose to major in mathematics at the University of California, Berkeley. “In those days, I called myself ‘anything but a music major,’” Lorien says. “I bounced around

“If you can see yourself doing anything else, you have to do that first.” – Lorien After graduating from Berkeley, Lorien won a fellowship to study in London for six months, then earned her master’s degree at the University of Michigan. The day after she graduated, she was hired to play with the Windsor Symphony. After five years there, she took a position as assistant concert master for the Charlotte Symphony in North Carolina. In 2001, she landed her dream job, playing for the renowned Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra. Lorien’s steady march up the ladder in her professional music career was very different from Hugh’s post-SMUS experiences. After migrating to Vancouver to study with trombone legend Dave Robbins, he spent two years at what was then the mecca of contemporary creative music: the Creative Music Studio in Woodstock, New York. He returned to Vancouver in 1980 and started the band Vancouver Ensemble of Jazz Improvisation (VEJI). He was working steadily when he was offered a residency in the Banff Centre’s acclaimed jazz program. He went to Banff and found the experience to be pivotal. “I worked with four of the biggest icons in jazz history,” he says, referring to Slide Hampton, Frank Foster, Joe Henderson and Dave Holland. “It changed my life and put me on the international jazz festival circuit.”

School Ties - Spring 2014 • 17

Lorien Benet Hart ’86 leads a Middle School Strings class

for a while, still playing the violin but not taking music classes.” Finally, one of her professors encouraged her to take some courses, just to see what it felt like; those few courses eventually led to a degree in musicology. Lorien may have failed to escape a career as a musician but she felt relieved to have a focus.


musicals like Blood Brothers. Ashley also worked with Donna on several outside gigs while she was in high school. Ashley credits many of her teachers with inspiring her and shaping her path in important ways, citing Judy Tobacco, Peter Tongue and Tony Cordle in addition to Donna. “I got my work ethic from SMUS,” she says. The ability to focus for long periods and work hard is something Ashley has applied to her music. “Having an education like that gives you a good base for whatever you go on to do.” After graduation, Ashley went to Humber College in Toronto where she earned a bachelor’s degree in music performance and arranging. There, she studied with Canadian jazz musician Don Thompson (who has also worked with Hugh Fraser) and Cuban jazz pianist Hilario Duran. “Humber provided me with a network that I could build on in addition to my SMUS network,” Ashley says. Those connections helped her develop a reputation as she continued to perform, using Toronto as her home base. During that period, she played Massey Hall with famed 80s pop band the Parachute Club and headlined a festival in Gatineau with Canadian Idol winner Eva Avila, playing for a crowd of 28,000 people. While Ashley and Hugh found their calling at a young age, Lorien was more reluctant to follow the musician’s path. She started playing violin at the age of


He ended up returning to the Banff Centre, first with his VEJI band members after they recorded their first record, and then later as an instructor and program director. By this point in time, Hugh had established himself in several core activities: performing, composing, recording, teaching, producing and arranging. Hugh practiced these defining elements of his career as a professional musician over 20 years, which he spent commuting between Vancouver, New York and London, where he designed the jazz composition program at the Royal Academy of Music.

18 • School Ties - Spring 2014

Ashley Wey ’00 performs at Hermann’s Jazz Club

“Mark Twain once said that specialization is for insects,” muses Hugh. “My life in music has been blessed because I can do some many things.” All three alumni agree that the biggest perk of their chosen career is travel. After Hugh won his first Juno award, he was making upwards of 50 trips a year. Although his pace has slowed considerably, he still relishes the opportunity to tour

to other countries – the Havana Jazz Festival is a particular favourite and he tries to make it every other year. He finds fellow musicians very welcoming and the experiences he has abroad are much richer than those he would have as a tourist. “Music is an international language that needs to be shared,” insists Hugh, “that’s why travel is so important.” Lorien travels with the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra to Europe every year for three weeks and has toured Japan, China, Australia, Malaysia and almost every South American country. The PSO is also looking at the possibility of a tour to Iran, where the orchestra is hoping to practice some cultural diplomacy. Not only does she enjoy the opportunity to explore new cities and collect memorable experiences of each, she loves the excitement of the shows and new audiences. “We are rock stars when we travel,” Lorien says. “If we play the BBC Proms at Royal Albert Hall, people sometimes begin lining up overnight for the front rows of standing room at the edge of the stage. We affectionately call it ‘the best-behaved mosh pit you’ll ever see.’” Ashley has experienced that same gratification through her work on cruise ships. “I’m a bit of a star on a cruise ship,” she admits. “My Dad is really proud – he loves coming on my cruises and I dedicate shows to him when he’s on board.” She started working on cruise ships when she was 26 as Toronto jazz clubs started shutting down and opportunities for paid work became scarcer. Performing on cruises has been a steady source of income and travel opportunities – she once visited 45 countries in one year – but she most appreciates the chance to play every night with her trio, a rare opportunity for a landlocked musician.

“You can grow so much, get really tight, and improve so much faster when you’re living in close quarters,” she says. In spite of its many joys, the musician’s life also creates lifestyle challenges. Ashley’s cruise ship work takes her away from her boyfriend for weeks at a time; Lorien’s concert schedule with the PSO keeps her busy on the weekends when her husband and kids have down time; Hugh’s travel schedule can get so intense he wakes up not knowing where he is.

“Performing is the easiest part.” – Ashley Despite the challenges, none of these hard-working musicians have any regrets about their ultimate career choice. “You don’t want to die with that song still inside you,” says Ashley. She believes that whatever talent or goal you have, you should do everything you can to get it out into the world. “Masters have always told me that people with a Plan B never get to Plan A,” she cautions. “Don’t invest in Plan B until Plan A has failed.” For Hugh, the idea of picking music as a career is a fallacy. “Music picks us; we don’t pick it.” Successful musicians are those who weren’t scared off by its uncertainties and didn’t fall victim to ego and entitlement. To be a professional musician, he says you only need one thing: “You have to be a maniac.” Lorien echoes that thought: she says you need incredibly tough skin, the ability to focus and shut out everything around you, and an insane work ethic. “People who made it have generally spent six to seven hours a day locked in a room practicing,” she says. In the end, she recognizes, people who are truly called to the musician’s life can no more avoid it than she did. “There are sublime moments when you get carried away in the music and are part of something so much bigger than there are words to describe,” she says. “That’s when you understand that music is part of you, not a job.”

It’s a

Hard Rock Life

by Darin Steinkey


hen you’re a member of a rock band, you don’t always get to control your own schedule. Bryce Soderberg ’98 really wanted to attend his 10-year high school reunion, but he was on tour and had a show in North Carolina that weekend. Over the last decade, Bryce figures he has spent six to eight months a year on the road with his band Lifehouse and the rest of the time at home recording. “I have a girlfriend I am close with now, so sometimes it is difficult to leave for longer periods of time,” he says. “Los Angeles is my home base, but hotel rooms and living out of a suitcase become the norm when you are in travel mode.”

Living away from home isn’t new for Bryce, who came to SMUS as a boarder at the age of 14. Having grown up at his parents’ Point-No-Point resort near Sooke, he gravitated towards city life and he remembers his time in Victoria fondly. “I’m grateful my parents sent my two brothers, my sister and myself to SMUS because we had access to so much art and culture,” he says. He took full advantage of the music program, touring Cuba with the jazz band and taking band, choir and strings classes. “I had access to music every day,” says Bryce. When he first graduated from SMUS, Bryce didn’t think he would pursue music

as a career. Most of his classmates were going to university or getting jobs and he felt he should too. He studied music and psychology at Bishop’s University in Quebec for two years before moving to Los Angeles to give music a try. Once again, it was his parents who encouraged the move. “It was my dad’s idea for me to move to LA and do music,” he says. “They are fully supportive and always have been.” After graduating from the Musicians Institute in Los Angeles, things became stagnant. He was going to give up and move back home when he received an offer to join a band called AM Radio. He

School Ties - Spring 2014 • 19

Bryce Soderberg ‘98 (left) with Lifehouse bandmates Jason Wade, Ben Carey, Rick Woolstenhulme, Jr. Photo: Pamela Littky


Bass player Bryce Soderberg ’98 found success in mainstream music when he joined the band Lifehouse in 2004. Here, he talks about shifts in the music industry and the challenges of touring.


toured with them under management by Weezer lead singer Rivers Cuomo and the group even recorded an album, but they were dropped from their label shortly after it was released. Soon after, Lifehouse – already an established rock outfit thanks to their hit single “Hanging by a Moment” – invited him to join them. Bryce has recorded four albums with the band since 2004, selling millions of copies and charting a single in the top 10 on the US Billboard Hot 100 (“You and Me”). To get an idea of their popularity, the video for “You and Me” has exceeded 35 million views on YouTube and 24 star Kiefer Sutherland directed the video for their song “Broken.” With a shift in how music is sold and consumed over the last decade, Lifehouse has had to adapt. Bryce manages the social media for the band and regularly shares band news and photos with their 3.5 million fans on Facebook. “When I was growing up, the element of mystery was what made a rock band cool,” says Bryce. “Back then, the closest

you could get to your favourite band was to look at their album cover. Today, we tweet, update and interact almost on a daily basis.” While he has a lot of fun interacting with the band’s fans, Bryce admits that not all of the changes in music have been positive. The industry has certainly tightened their belts and many labels have merged or closed down. New artists without Lifehouse’s strong album sales are more and more likely to get a deal from a record label that requires the band to give cuts of their touring, royalties, merchandise and even YouTube channel advertising. “Although there is less money in the industry now from album sales due to digital downloading, I am a believer that there are still a lot of loyal fans of music out there,” says Bryce. “Our fan support at shows has increased quite a bit over the years and online file sharing, YouTube, iTunes, and even illegal downloading have been the positive catalyst for that.” Despite so many new platforms and

20 • School Ties - Spring 2014

“Hotel rooms and living out of a suitcase become the norm when you are in travel mode.”

Bryce Soderberg ‘98 at Alumni Weekend 2013

ways to share music, Lifehouse still relies a lot on radio to get their music heard. However, one of the real launch pads for the group has been television. Bryce says many of the band’s new fans will have heard their music on shows like Scrubs, Grey’s Anatomy, ER and Smallville, in which the band had an on-camera role. “We headlined a show in a sold-out arena in the Philippines last year and it seemed that a ton of our fans came from listening to us online or watching us on the TV show Smallville,” says Bryce. “We’ve come across quite a few surprises in the business after 14 years and I’m sure it will continue to surprise us.” Even though Bryce also has a new side project – indie-alternative band Komox Kids – on his plate, he made it to SMUS for his 15-year reunion last year. In addition to catching up with his classmates, he saw a few of his former teachers and got to check out his old dorm room in Barnacle House. It was a visit he enjoyed immensely. Afterwards, Bryce signed on to help judge The Best School Year Ever competition, which gave away its first full-year boarding scholarship this May. The contest will allow one student the chance to experience the same kind of education that influenced Bryce’s life so much. “I’ll do whatever I can to help give back to the school,” he says. “Visiting again, it was incredible to see how much the school had blossomed – but it still has the same charm I always loved.”

The Amazing Ann Makosinski

Andrew Lampard ‘02 films a segment on Ann for ABC


Ann makosinskI,

School Ties - Spring 2014 • 21

the Grade 11 student who invented a flashlight that runs off the heat of the human hand. After winning the 2013 Google Science Fair and being named one of Time Magazine’s 30 Under 30, she made a surprise appearance on The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon. Andrew Lampard  ’02, a producer for ABC News, took Ann on a tour of ABC (including a stop at Diane Sawyer’s desk) while she was in New York for her appearance on Fallon, then he came to the SMUS campus to film a segment on her for ABC News.

Ann Makosinski

GRAD 2013

Meet the Graduating Canada Matthew Ashton Shayla Baumeler Elisha Begg Chris Bjola William Brown Alex Campbell Russell Carleton Lindon Carter Natasha Caton Mackenzie Catto Shane Cheng Billy Cheng Christine Chiu Theresa Cho Clarence Choy Isaac Chung Rebecca Clayton Chiara Clemente Kathleen Cluley Richard Cunningham

Meriah Drabkin Sophia Ducharme Prim Durongdej Anastasia Efremova Taylor Ellison Ryley Erickson Leanne Farmer Shanna Fong Sydney Fraser Luke Friswell Stefan Fuller Sydney Green Leah Hall Ella Hayashi Alexander Heidrick Taylor Hibbert Erin Hope Meris Hopkins Ashley Hoydal-Payne Oliver Huang

Liam Hyatt Georgios Ikonomou Candice Ip Christina Kang Mark Kiggundu Carlina Kim Alex Kinahan Lisa Kinoshita Kara Langley Ethan Lee Marcus Lelewski Anders Leung Jamie Li Ryan Lider Wayne Lin Jessy Lok Gabriel Lunn Victoria Lunn Wyatt Lutes Keenan Manhas

Adam Marsh Hannah McElderry Jacqueline McKay Lexus Meng Arden Mollenhauer Conrad Moore Celeste Nussbaumer Min Hyuk Park Erynn Pawluk Abbey Piazza David Pollen Lauren Quong Samuel Reid Kali Salmas Larissa Santiago Pamela Schaefer Mathew Sedgwick Christian Sharp John Shin Rachel Sibbald

Colton Stockus Josef Svorkdal Cole Tamburri Chloe Tsui Whitney Tu David Wang Brody Watkins Jacob Watkins Adam Weech Graeme Wheeler Steven Whillans Alpha Willeboordse Marita Wyatt Brian Yam Jocelyne Yan Mark Yorath Tina Yu Alice Zhang Dylan Zheng Julia Zheng

Camosun College Carleton University Concordia University Dalhousie University MacEwan University McGill University

Mount Allison University Queen’s University Quest University Canada Ryerson University Simon Fraser University St. Francis Xavier University

University of Alberta University of British Columbia University of British Columbia - Okanagan University of Calgary

University of Guelph University of King’s College University of Ontario Institute of Technology University of Toronto University of Victoria

University of Waterloo Western University York University

22 • School Ties - Spring 2014

Candice Ip (University of British Columbia)

Chris Fenje (Northwestern University)

Note: Based on graduates’ plans as of June 2013.

Hannah McElderry (Carleton University)

Ryley Erickson (St. Francis Xavier University)

Lindon Carter (MacEwan University)

GRAD 2013

Class of 2013 United States Mackenzie Blaisdell Victoria Chan Stanley Du Lihani Du Plessis

Benjamin Elliott Christopher Fenje Montgomery Fraser-Brown Remy Furrer

Tom Kim James Kim Jinsu Park Archana Pillay

Marvin Ren Shannon Toogood Dawit Workie

Barnard College Carnegie Mellon University Dartmouth College Hampshire College New York University

Northwestern University Oregon State University Pratt Institute Santa Clara University

University of California at Los Angeles University of Oregon University of Rochester

University of Southern California Western Texas College Western Washington University


GAP Year

Natrine Cheuk Michelle Cruz Prince Durongdej Ethel Kiggundu

Mai Masuda Marisol Mayagoitia Rei Murakami Eloise Patmore

Charlotte Queen Sasha Ren Trenton Schulz-Franco Keiler Totz

Ana Wang Shannon Wong Jeffrey Wu Vincent Wu

Architectural Association School of Architecture Chinese University of Hong Kong King’s College London

Oxford Brookes University Royal College of Surgeons, Ireland Universidad La Salle Campus México

University in China University in Japan University of Cambridge University of Edinburgh University of Kent

University of Leicester University of the Arts London

Marvin Ren (University of Southern California) Shayla Baumeler (Mount Allison University)

Mark Yorath (University of Victoria)

Charles Gannon Orla Glen Jennifer Hughes Cati Landry Madalyn Laslett Susanne Maier Cormac O’Brien Karena Olszewska Elliot Pryce-Baff

Dawit Workie (Dartmouth College)

Eloise Patmore (King’s College London) Leah Hall (University of Waterloo)

School Ties - Spring 2014 • 23

ALUMNI NEWS 24 • School Ties - Spring 2014

The SMUS 2013 Distinguished Alumnus Award in Business: Douglas Freeman ’88


ouglas Freeman ’88 was selected to receive the 2013 Distinguished Alumnus Award for his influential and diverse career in the world of business.

After earning his BA at the University of California at Berkeley, he went on to a master’s degree at Harvard’s John F. Kennedy School of Government. He has addressed world leaders, consulted for major corporations and founded the inaugural World Diversity Leadership Summit – a conference of Global 1000 business leaders, government officials and community leaders – to address global diversity management practices. Most recently, he founded Virtcom, a consultancy focused on solving and facilitating global diversity management issues. “Douglas was a standout candidate because he’s an innovator and he continues to work in his community and at the school,” says Alumni Associate Gillian Donald. “Most importantly, he has shown a real progression in his career. He started out in banking and has now created a whole industry around diversity management.” With Virtcom, Douglas coaches business leaders to capitalize on the demographic trends prevalent in the current and future workforce. He believes there are six major demographic groups that are intelligent, hardworking and grossly under-represented in corporations. Douglas has said that diversity and gender issues are core ones, not just for the success of one individual or business, but of society as a whole. In October, Doug spoke to dozens of students about his time at SMUS, the path he took through university and his diverse career. His advice was realistic and matter-of-fact: your career will not be a straight line. He is living proof of this. “Douglas has seen a need in a global context and he’s doing what he can to make the lives of people better,” says Becky Anderson, Director of Leadership at SMUS. “His career echoes so strongly what we believe in at SMUS and his story is very encouraging for our students.” We were proud to officially recognize Douglas at the Founders’ and Scholars’ Dinner in November 2013.

Seeking a Distinguished Alumnus in the Field of Education In 2014, we will recognize one of our alumni who has done remarkable work in the field of education. Nominees should demonstrate vision and innovation, dedication, achievement and accomplishment, and community involvement. Submit your nominations through the Advancement office or on our alumni website ( For more information, please contact: Gillian Donald ’85 ( or Nicky Parkinson ’83 (


TOKYO: Natsumi Bamba ‘10, Hiromi Ogawa ‘09, Mizuho Inai ‘09


LONDON (UK): Ken Yim ’07, Angie Hsieh ’07, Michael Clark ’60, Daniel Karan, Brittney Martin ‘08

LONDON (UK): Alex Richie ‘81, Eloise Patmore ‘13

MEXICO CITY: Ernesto Scharrer ’73, Gilberto Garcia ’12, Lucas Comamala ‘12, Alex Carrion ‘15, Peter Gardiner, Luis de Leon ‘78; Paloma Junco ‘14, Ana Abad ‘14, Alberto Hammeken ‘79

VICTORIA: Mike Wilson ‘00, Eric Findlay ‘00, Tyson Johnson ‘00

Interested in attending an alumni reception? Take a look at the back cover to see cities we hope to visit in the next year and contact Gillian Donald ( to find out how you can arrange an alumni event in your city.

School Ties - Spring 2014 • 25



Alumni Updates The ’00s Sascha Braunig ’01 currently lives and works in Portland, Maine. She holds a BFA from The Cooper Union and an MFA in painting from Yale University. Represented by Foxy Production in New York, Sasha has mounted two solo exhibitions and participated in numerous group exhibitions. Shows include: Rien Faire et Laisser Rire, organised by Bob Nickas and Galerie Rudolphe Janssen, Brussels (2013); Surreal Selves, Baltimore Museum of Art, Baltimore (2013); Alex Da Corte: Fun Sponge, The Institute of Contemporary Art/MECA, Portland (2013); A Top Hat, A Monocle, and A Butterfly, curated by Anthony Huberman, établissement d’en face projects, Brussels (2013). Liz Francis ’04 writes: “After graduating from SMUS, I went to UVic to complete my bachelor of arts degree with a double major in environmental studies and geography.

Liz Francis ‘04 and fiancé Terry Schmidt

After spending some time living and working in Vancouver, unable to find a job I was passionate about, I decided to switch gears to a tourism management diploma at Capilano University for more specific training in an industry I love and am a part of every day. “I worked in market research and communications for Tourism Whistler for my co-op term and, upon graduation, I received the Squamish Achievement Award. I also met my fiancée, Terry Schmidt, in the program – we got engaged last summer while hiking Whistler Mountain and will be married in August 2015. “I have recently launched my own business,, a tour and activity booking site for Whistler. It’s an entirely new frontier for me entrepreneurially and from a web perspective, so I am learning something new every day! After learning that another alumnus, Zoe Grams ’04, started her own business as a communications specialist in Vancouver, I consulted her expertise and she has done some amazing work creating a social media plan for me. It’s great to be a part of the SMUS alumni community and I am happy to be contacted at anytime!”

of Toronto, and this past September I took up a new academic position at the University of Reading in the UK, where I teach English and creative writing. My husband Cillian and I now live in London, where he recently began a new job as the curator of Classical and Byzantine studies at the British Library. This April, my first book, Circus (a collection of short stories) will be published by McClelland & Stewart, an imprint of Random House Canada.”

Claire Battershill ’04 writes: “In 2012, I completed my PhD in English literature at the University

Lucas Lee ’97 released his second solo album Normalcy Bias in 2013. The music on this concept album is mostly

The ’90s Chris Hutchinson ’90 has pursued various livelihoods and made his home in such places as Dawson City, YK; Kelowna, BC; New York City, NY; and, most recently, Houston, TX where he is a PhD student in poetry and literature at the University of Houston. He is the author of three books of poetry, all published in Canada. His most recent book is A Brief History of the Short-lived (Nightwood Editions, 2012). Eric Kerr ’95 moved back to Victoria to join Johns Southward Glazier Walton & Margetts as a partner in early 2014. He has resumed his practice in the areas of real estate, lending, commercial and corporate law.

26 • School Ties - Spring 2014

Stay Connected Did you know that the alumni updates section is one of the most popular sections of School Ties? Even with Facebook, Twitter and other social media, the alumni updates section is an important part of our magazine.

Update us today!

Telling us your news helps keep you connected to alumni outside of your own network, whether it’s a recent graduate looking for some career advice or a former classmate who recently moved to your city. We also want to hear more about your life and work as it helps us find candidates for the feature section of School Ties and makes sure you find out about alumni events in your area.


It’s never been easier to share what’s new in your life.

Online: Phone: 250-519-7508

rock instrumental (featuring guitars and keys), with hints of experimental and progressive elements. Featured on the album is the legendary Pat Mastelotto (known for his work with King Crimson, Mr. Mister and Stick Men) on acoustic and electric drums. Lucas produced, composed, arranged, recorded and mixed the album, as well as played all instruments except for the drums (guitars, bass, keys, violins). Normalcy Bias is now available on CD Baby, iTunes, Google Play, Amazon and Spotify. More details are available at

The ’80s Alex Richie ’81 published her newest book, Warsaw 1944: Hitler, Himmler, and the Warsaw Uprising, which she launched at the SMUS alumni reception in London, UK.

Mauricio Rodriguez ’86 writes: “For the last three years, I have been developing a low-cost, electronic Braille reader. This device has already won praise

The ’60s Gary Wilson ’68 writes: “I have long thought of writing an open letter to the school, the students and perhaps the alumni, though I’m confident much of what I say would ring hollow and fall on deaf ears. I am an alum and proud of it, a member of the class of ’68 (yes, those rebellious rascals) that the school seldom hears from, it seems. “I have such grand memories of my three years as a boarder in Bolton House: the ups and downs, the trials and tears, the misgivings and the uplifting. I participated in all that was available at the time, sparse compared to what’s available today, but still. ‘U’ School was growing, and had a good reputation. Rugby, tennis, basketball, cadets, track, rolling the cricket pitch (though I never played the game), and yes – along with everyone else – detention. (Do the kids still experience detention, being ‘soaked’ when caught in the wrong, Saturday mornings filled with the menial jobs assigned as penance? I digress.) “Of course studies, which I am so thankful for, formed a solid base for this not-too-interested soul. I was neither number one in the class nor at the end of the line. I was gratified upon returning for my first visit many years after my senior year. I searched for and found my name on the plaque in the chapel, along with others. I had indeed made it! On that same visit, I played in an Old Boys versus First XV rugby game (I don’t believe they have those anymore). After my first tackle, I wondered what on earth I was doing out there; I was old. And though Mr. Smith (our rugby coach back then) indicated my tackling was perhaps suspect, I even saw Brinkley miss one or two. “I just read over the latest edition of School Ties. I truly am amazed and thrilled and encouraged to read of the ‘vision, innovation, dedication, achievement, accomplishment, and

School Ties - Spring 2014 • 27

Alex Richie ‘81 signs copies of her latest book

Taun (Miller) Wright ’84 writes: “This last year brought our second grandchild, trips to England and France to see friends and relatives, our 10-year wedding anniversary and a temporary adieu to Sarah Kerr ’84, who moved back to Calgary after having been our neighbor for the last decade. We went trick-ortreating at Daralyn Durie’s ’84 house (just a few doors down) where her lovely family – all dressed as pirates – offered us treats for children and adults alike. While maintaining an active practice as a consultant to non-profit organizations, this year I founded my own NPO to address the need for more gender and racial balance in children’s literature. Our company, Wireless Industrial Technologies (WIT), continues to apply wireless technology to improve the productivity, energy efficiency and environmental footprint of heavy industries.”

and, recently, it came in second place in an international competition from the University of Strathclyde, Glasgow, Scotland.” Mauricio plans to redesign his prototype based on feedback from users using funds raised on Kickstarter, a crowdfunding platform.


Normalcy Bias by Lucas Lee ‘97

Congratulations to Dr. Evan T. Adams ’83, one of the 14 outstanding Indigenous Canadians who has been selected as a recipient of the 2014 Indspire Awards! Dr. Evan Tlesla II Adams is currently the Deputy Provincial Health Officer with responsibility for Indigenous health for the province of British Columbia. Since 2012, Evan has worked to support the development and operations of the First Nations Health Authority as well as reported on the health of Indigenous people in the province. He is the past President of the Indigenous Physicians’ Association of Canada and former Director of the Division of Aboriginal Peoples’ Health, UBC Department of Family Practice. Evan was the recipient of the 2005 Family Medicine Resident Leadership Award from the College of Family Physicians of Canada (CFPC) and the 2005 national winner of the Murray Stalker Award from the CFPC Research and Education Foundation. Also an established actor, Adams has received multiple awards for acting and has been a part of numerous television shows and movies, including the Emmywinning TV-movie Lost in the Barrens.

ALUMNI UPDATES 28 • School Ties - Spring 2014

community involvement’ of past and present students. I thoroughly enjoy seeing pictures of the likes of Nutting and Featherstone, remembering challenging times and that we were all knuckleheads... vision, accomplishment, etc. came later! “Over the years, reading of the innovation and achievements has been a real treat. The school has grown up. My real reason in writing is for the rest of the alumni, those like myself that were just regular Joes. I am privileged and happy to put those who have truly made a contribution in any area on a pedestal for a time, as enticement and encouragement for students to lean toward. But what of the ‘undistinguished’ group – I dare say the larger number of kids that attended the school – those that went on to make ends meet and accomplish life, if you will? “The ‘vision’ I shared with many in my class, from the American point of view, was the clamor of war in southeast Asia, the prospect of the draft and being shipped out. Even then, Headmaster Timmis allowed us to complain, we thought it reasonable to make it an option to attend cadets in the Canadian Scottish tradition, rather than a mandatory function, considering we were looking forward to a real war experience. I don’t think he wanted to, but he relented; however, I continued to wear the kilt. ‘Innovation’ meant finding a job after school was over. Community college was okay, but I wasn’t over eager. The rest, the ‘dedication, achievement, community involvement, etc.’ came in the life process as the years rolled by. “I was married to a wonderful gal within my first year of leaving school. After almost 45 years, she remains my sweetheart and my pal... I put that in one of those ‘distinguished’ categories myself! We have two great kids, who are quite accomplished, and two grandchildren (waiting to accomplish) in the wings. I had a career in law enforcement (26 years and 11 days, not that I was counting), but younger criminals and a broken body convinced me it was time to move on. I spent another 16 years working in the federal court system. I had positions in the church from janitor to trustee, from elder to chairman and even survived a building project! During that time, I decided I wanted to go back to school

and I did: Bible college. It was something I wanted to do and was thoroughly encouraged with the experience. “I got my pilot’s licence, bought a plane, flew back and forth to work for several years (we lived on an island). I put my kids through private schools (not “U” school, beyond my budget) and university. My wife and I enjoyed short-term missions work in Uganda and travelled on four continents. We crisscrossed North America over the years, driving the ALCAN Highway in ’78, Alaska to Florida, California to the coast of Nova Scotia and many points in between. “We have experienced births and deaths. At this point, I am retired. My wife occupied a number of jobs part-time over the years, preferring to be at home for the kids growing up. We made that and education a priority. We don’t have a bill to our names. We live comfortably. “‘Wow, what a boring tale,’ you might say and you’re correct. But that’s the point, more or less: the unremarkable, but peaceable and content life had by the ‘undistinguished,’ those that just got an education in life as a boarder and good classes. I had a health class from Mr. Wenman, the ‘Bird’ as he was affectionately called (behind his back!). He reminded us to use soap when we took a shower. Compare that to what the youngsters in health classes learn today! “Alas, my rant comes to a close. I have written only to encourage those that may not see the vision and accomplishment of others or of the world for that matter as something to strive for, but maybe they ‘just’ want a life full of family and

laughter, willing to sacrifice the limelight for lemon juice on the porch after a day at the factory. We, the ‘undistinguished’ – without resentment – doff our hats and cheer as the parade goes by with the successful. A funny parade it would be if there wasn’t some to sit on the curb and clap. Participants and observers, heads held high!”

There were bells... Danielle Topliss ’91 married Melissa Caton on July 13, 2013. The ceremony was officiated by Reverend Keven Fletcher and attended by SMUS alumni Gillie Easdon ’91 (bridesmaid), Rachel Phillips ’91 (bridesmaid) and Anna Kemp ’91. Stephan Chapheau ’99 married Samantha Welscheid on October 5, 2013 in Montreal. Present were many fellow alumni, including Jason Owen ’99, Felicia Chapheau ’06, Dan Jost ’84, Cameron Clark ’99, Alex Austin ’96, Jon Preston ’99, John McGillivray ’99, Kevin Morin ’99, Christopher Chapheau ’02, Reid Chambers ’99, Susan (Morris) Ben-Oliel ’82, John Kwari ’99, Tim Street ’99 and Nicholas Isaac ’99. Yori Hagi ’02 married Craig Handley on September 7, 2013 at Emerald Lake in Jasper, AB. David Angus ’94 married Jennifer Baur at the H.R. MacMillan Space Centre in Vancouver on September 14, 2013. Present were Trevor Hoskins ’94, Andrew Barry ’94, Alec Johnston ’98

Jason Owen ‘99, Felicia Chapheau ‘06, Dan Jost ‘84, Cameron Clark ‘99, Alex Austin ‘96, Jon Preston ‘99, Stephan Chapheau ‘99 (groom), Samantha Welscheid (bride), John McGillivray ‘99, Kevin Morin ‘99, Christopher Chapheau ‘02, Reid Chambers ‘99, Susan (Morris) Ben-Oliel ‘82, John Kwari ‘99, Tim Street ‘99, Nicholas Isaac ‘99

Paulina Lipska ’05 married David Cameron on August 24, 2013 in Langley, BC. It was a beautiful outdoor wedding. Laura Faryna ’06 and Christine Ottmar ’06 attended.


and Jenny (Angus) Johnston ’98 (with their children Jamie and Shelby), Jaye Russell ’94, Sasha Angus ’90, Samantha (Frey) Karlos ’94, Eric Angus ’82, David Angus ’62, Andrew Rippington ’93 and his son Evan.

Nick Issac ‘99, Reid Chambers ‘99, Jason Owen ‘99 and Kevin Morin ‘99 in Montreal for Stephan Chapheau’s ‘99 wedding

Yori Hagi ‘02 and Craig Handley

Trevor Hoskins ’94, Andrew Barry ’94, Alec Johnston ’98 and Jenny (Angus) Johnston ’98 (with their children Jamie and Shelby), David Angus ’94 (groom), Jennifer Baur (bride) Jaye Russell ’94, Sasha Angus ’90, Samantha (Frey) Karlos ’94, Eric Angus ’82, David Angus ’62, Andrew Rippington ’93 and his son Evan.

David Cameron, Christina Ottmar ‘06 and Paulina Lipska ‘05

School Ties - Spring 2014 • 29

Mitchell Selly, Melanie Vogels, Gillie Easdon ’91, Rachel Phillips ’91, Danielle Topliss ‘91 (bride), Melissa Caton (bride), Kara Wutzke, Angella Caton-Campos, Vanessa Caton, Joe Liimatta and flowergirls Olivia and Ariana.


New on the scene Steve Tate ’98 and Debra Tate welcomed daughter Della Claire Tate on April 30, 2013. Rory Forbes ’90 and Kathi Forbes welcomed Kaia Christine Forbes on June 25, 2013 in Hong Kong. Helen (Turner) Werbicki ’93 and her husband Aaron welcomed a daughter, Margaret Eleanor Otieno Werbicki, on May 14, 2012.

SMUS Lifer Helen (Lamla) Gosniak ’96 and her husband Peter welcomed their daughter Estella Maria into the world on July 1, 2013 in Vancouver, BC Steve Romanchuk ’98 writes: “My wife Jennifer and I are proud to announce the arrival of James Allan Romanchuk on Saturday, February 1, 2014 at 8:39 pm. Weighing in at 7lbs 14oz and standing 21 inches tall, this little guy, who is named after both of his grandfathers, arrived four days early and with a full head of hair. We are all doing well and can’t wait for everyone to meet Baby James.”

Martin Edward Stipp was born in Beijing on September 12, 2014 to Nicholas Stipp ’99 and Vivian Wang. Alec Southern Hollingworth, first son of Jean (Daniel) Hollingworth ’98 and Tom Hollingworth (SMUS Middle School French Teacher) was born March 15, 2013.

Margaret Eleanor Otieno Werbicki, was born on May 14, 2012

Alec Southern Hollingworth with parents Jean (Daniel) Hollingworth ’98 and Tom Hollingworth

Estella Maria Gosniak

30 • School Ties - Spring 2014

Martin Edward Stipp

Della Claire Tate, daugher of Steve Tate ‘98 and Debra Tate

James Allan Romanchuk

Rory Forbes ‘90 with daughter Kaia

William McIntosh ’30 passed away in July of 2013, one month before his 100th birthday. William attended University School from 1926-1930. He completed his Grade 13 Senior Matriculation in 1930, before his 17th birthday. He graduated from the University of Manitoba with a BSc in electrical engineering and later became a mechanical engineer. From 1966 to 1981, he was a teacher in the Engineering Department at Royal Roads Military College. He led a long and healthy life

and his obituary notes that his devotion to sailing was such that he raced 12 minisailboats when he was in his 90s. Also, at the age of 96, he attended the Victoria Alumni Reception in 2009.

Theo Hudec ’40

Martin Hudec ’39

thanks to Sylvia Moser for setting the record straight. Theo’s grandchildren did attend the school and logged an impressive amount of years between them: Stephan Moser

(Kindergarten to Grade 2), Richard Moser ’08 (Grade 5 to 12) and Christina Moser ’06 (a lifer who attended from Kindergarten to Grade 12).

The following obituary is reprinted with corrections from our Summer 2013 issue.

CORRECTION: THEO HUDEC ’40 An error in the obituary of Theo Hudec in the last issue of School Ties incorrectly stated that Christian and Claudia Knoglinger were Theo’s grandchildren. Our apologies for this error and our

School Ties - Spring 2014 • 31

Larry Devlin ’59, a family friend of the Hudecs, wrote this tribute to two fine men: “Brothers Martin Hudec ’39 and Theo Hudec ’40, both alumni with long and deep connections to the school community, died in April and August of 2012. Martin and Theo (Ted) Hudec came to University School from Shanghai in 1937, in part, because their uncle, Gerald Tisdall, had earlier retired to the Cowichan Valley from China and his youngest son, A.G.H. (Binkie) Tisdall had attended University School in 1924-1929, where he was an outstanding athlete. “Martin graduated from University School in 1939 and Theo in 1940. Both brothers returned to Shanghai where their father was a prominent architect. Despite wartime occupation of the Shanghai International Settlement, they continued their studies in languages and science. As adults, their linguistic skills

were remarkable and included Japanese, Mandarin, German, French, Spanish and Portuguese. “In 1948, the family emigrated to California. Martin and Theo enrolled at UBC where they studied business, economics and engineering. “Both brothers maintained contact with the school during their long and successful international careers. Theo’s grandchildren attended the school and logged an impressive amount of years between them: Christina Moser ’06 (a lifer who attended from Kindergarten to Grade 12) Richard Moser ’08 (Grade 5 to 12), and Stephan Moser (Kindergarten to Grade 2). Martin came to several recent alumni reunions including his 70th in 2009, at which the statue of Reg Wenman was unveiled. “Martin often spoke of the positive effect that G.H. Scarrett (Headmaster, 1935-1948) had on his life, and he regularly wore his black and red University School tie with great pride. “Both brothers died within four months of each other, peacefully surrounded by family members, friends and others who had been witness to the Hudec energy for life, wisdom and civility.”


Doug Friesen ’82 died peacefully on July 30, 2013 in Vancouver after a long struggle with a brain tumour and multiple sclerosis. Doug attended school first in Vancouver at Trafalgar Elementary and Prince of Wales Secondary, and completed his high school years at St. Michaels University School in Victoria. He attended the University of British Columbia and Queen’s University in Kingston, earning bachelor of arts and masters of public administration degrees. After working for a number of years in Toronto for the government of Ontario, Doug’s career took him back to Vancouver, where he worked for Cornerstone Planning and Context Research. A world traveller, Doug visited over 30 countries, gaining deep respect and understanding of other cultures. This experience, combined with his natural compassion, modesty and tireless courtesy, made him loved and respected by many friends from all walks of life. As his disease progressed over the last few years, Doug focused his attention on his beloved wife Ruth Casey and daughter Lily, enjoying their loving family life, their neighbourhood and their many close and wonderful friends. The family accepted donations to the BC Cancer Agency in lieu of flowers.

PASSAGES 32 • School Ties - Spring 2014

Passages Scott Stone ’02 by Ian Hyde-Lay and Gary Barber


plaque on a bench in the Senior School quad reads “I’m not telling you it is going to be easy. I’m telling you it is going to be worth it.” The words are a fitting memorial to Scott Stone, a student at the school from Grades 1-9 and a young man who achieved so much before his untimely death at the age of 24. Scott started his time at SMUS in the Junior School, where he was recognized as a kind student with an insatiable love of sports. His joyful attitude on the sports field was infectious and he quickly became a leader and role model. The wonderful memories we have of Scott at the Junior School were honoured on Saturday March 8, 2014, when SMUS hosted the Scott Stone Memorial Basketball Jamboree at the Senior School. Scott continued to enjoy sports at the Middle and Senior Schools, becoming a dominant athlete who excelled in particular at lacrosse and rugby. Scott’s sense of adventure also made him keen to travel the world. This wanderlust saw him move to New South Wales in Australia for Grade 10, where, in addition to sport and academics, he learned to surf and spear fish. He also volunteered at the Koala hospital, tending to sick animals. Back on Vancouver Island, he moved to Oak Bay High School and enjoyed a 1st XV tour to Britain as well as competing in the annual Boot Game against his old SMUS friends. He remained on the national rugby radar, but focused mainly on lacrosse, moving quickly through the junior ranks before representing both the Nanaimo Timbermen and Victoria Shamrocks. The travel bug hit again after graduation, as he left for South Africa and stints as a field guide at game reserves in Pongola, Thabazimbi and Kruger National Park. While, over the years, he had some close encounters with rhinos, elephants, lions and crocodiles, African wildlife remained a great fascination and joy for him. Upon returning home to Canada, Scott then worked as a lineman in Alberta, but still found time to travel Down Under and to Asia. Finally back in Victoria, Scott obtained his commercial helicopter pilot licence early in 2013. He was in the process of adding a US licence when he tragically passed away. Scott’s memorial service was held at Shawnigan Lake, one of his favourite places on earth and the site of so many happy times with family and friends. That hundreds of people attended, from all over the world, spoke volumes about the lives he had touched. He is missed immensely by those who loved him and had the pleasure of knowing him.

Scott Stone ’02, Camille Stone ’11 and Mac Stone ’09

Scott Stone ‘02

dream big Join Renee Dugan ‘90 and other SMUS alumni in our annual fundraising effort to help others have a SMUS education and also to support special projects that benefit the school. Renee says her time at St. Michaels University School prepared her for her dream job and that she contributes because “I want anyone to have the same chance I was so lucky to get”. Let’s make dreams a reality, together.

For information call: +1 250 370 6197 or visit

Publications Mail Agreement #40063624

Upcoming Alumni Gatherings Canada

Victoria, BC Vancouver, BC Calgary, AB Edmonton, AB Montreal, QC Toronto, ON Ottawa, ON Kingston, ON London, ON

United States

San Francisco, CA Los Angeles, CA New York, NY Seattle, WA Boston, MA

St. Michaels University School 3400 Richmond Road Victoria, BC, CANADA V8P 4P5

If undeliverable, return to


London, UK Edinburgh, UK Paris, FR Tokyo, JP Beijing, CH Hong Kong, CH Melbourne, AUS Seoul, KR

We want to visit you!

Tell us which cities we should visit or let us help you plan or host an event. Email: Facebook: Twitter: @smusalumni

School Ties: The Music Issue, Spring 2014  

School Ties: The Alumni Magazine for St. Michaels University School. Professional musicians, recent university grads and one rock star shar...

Read more
Read more
Similar to
Popular now
Just for you