The Ballytobin LIVE FROM THE ISABEL Online Summer Music Festival


Kingston ON … What happens when you gather some of Kingston’s musical luminaries on Zoom? The creation of a wonderful online music festival where Kingston musicians perform live at the Isabel Bader Centre for the Performing Arts (“the Isabel”) at Queen’s University for online music lovers.

The inaugural Ballytobin LIVE FROM THE ISABEL Online Summer Music Festival showcases live performances at the Isabel by fabulous musicians of many different genres, streamed by the Isabel team on its new Isabel Digital Concert Hall at from May to August, 2020. The Isabel Digital Concert Hall will be accessible starting May 16, 2020.

All online concerts are free for audiences in Kingston and beyond to enjoy with a voluntary donation requested.

“There is no doubt that Kingston loves music, and musicians want to make music during this difficult period of isolation. This Festival is a musical initiative of tremendous passion and enthusiasm,” says Tricia Baldwin, Director of the Isabel. “The community collaborators have created a wonderful and varied summer program for Kingston’s music lovers and beyond.  The irony of social isolation is the increased collaboration and goodwill in the arts.  I am grateful to all our partners, the Ballytobin Foundation for making this festival possible, and Technical Director Aaron Holmberg and Arts Stage Technicians  Jesse MacMillan and Noah Sullivan for working tirelessly to bring about a high fidelity live online festival.”

“In these interesting times, we are so pleased to support this innovative arts initiative that ensures that a vast array of live music continues in Kingston and is shared with the community through its new Isabel Digital Concert Hall,” says Joan Tobin, Ballytobin Foundation. “There is such determination in Kingston to ensure that the music does not stop, but rather, continues to flourish in this music-loving city. I congratulate the entire community programming team and all the artists and collaborators who, together, have created a wonderful festival for all to enjoy.”


The festival programming has been collaboratively created with Kingston community members: Adrienne Shannon and Joy Innis (Palenai Duo), Gisèle Dalbec Szczesniak and Wolf Tormann (DAN School of Drama and Music, Queen’s University), Andrea Haughton and Evan Mitchell (Kingston Symphony), Jon Stewart (jazz musician), Greg Tilson (Skeleton Park Arts Festival), Roman Borys (Ottawa Chamberfest), Steve Wogaman (Chamber Music Society of Detroit), and Aaron Holmberg and Tricia Baldwin (the Isabel at Queen’s University). Organization collaborators include the DAN School of Drama and Music, Skeleton Park Arts Festival, Ottawa Chamberfest, Chamber Music Society of Detroit, Kingston Symphony, media supporter Kingston Whig Standard, and the festival’s major donor Ballytobin Foundation.


(Please see the event listing below for program details, times, and dates.)

  • Sadaf Amini (Iranian santur) in collaboration with the Skeleton Park Arts Festival
  • Leanne Betasamosake Simpson (Indigenous multi-arts) and her band in collaboration with the Skeleton Park Arts Festival
  • Frase (hip-hop/ funk / house / soul) in collaboration with the Skeleton Park Arts Festival


  • Gryphon Trio (in collaboration with the Ottawa Chamberfest and the Chamber Music Society of Detroit)
  • Palenai Duo (Adrienne Shannon, Joy Innis, piano)
  • Triola (Gisèle Dalbec Szczesniak, Melinda Collins, Eileen Beaudette)
  • Limestone Trio (KSA members: Lisa Draper, Danielle Lennon, Jeff Hamacher) in collaboration with the Kingston Symphony
  • Valery Lloyd-Watts, piano
  • Isabel String Quartet (Laura Andriani and Julia MacFarlane – violins, Caitlin Boyle – viola, and Wolf Tormann – cello) in collaboration with Queen’s DAN School of Drama and Music
  • Faculty Artist Trio (Kornel Wolak – clarinet, Wolf Tormann – cello, Cynthia Tormann – piano) in collaboration with Queen’s DAN School of Drama and Music
  • Carina Canonico (KSA principal clarinet) and David Gazaille (clarinet) in collaboration with the Kingston Symphony


  • Jive Ass Slippers (Jon Stewart, Benji Perosin, Paul Morrison, Paul Clifford, Rich Bannard)
  • Benny Goodman Tribute Band (Chris Alfano, Greg Runions, Paul Clifford, Rich Bannard)
  • Kingston Cabaret (Musiikki Monday Night Band, Selina Chiarelli and the Firebirds)


  • Emilie Steele & The Deal
  • Oakridge Ave.

(Site open on May 16)


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