Stradivari stars at Conservatory benefit concert in Victoria

Victoria’s Nikki Chooi will play a $5-million violin for the Jubilee Tribute Concert at Alix Goolden Hall on Saturday.

The 1700 Stradivari violin, nicknamed the Taft, is on loan from the Canada Council for the Arts.

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Chooi will perform Eugene Ysaye’s Sonata No. 2 in A Minor (dedicated to Jacques Thibaud). He’ll also play Three Preludes by George Gershwin and Manuel de Falla’s Suite Populaire Espagnole, both accompanied by pianist Robert Holliston.

Chooi was a first-prize winner of the 2013 Michael Hill International Violin Competition.

He was also a winner of the 2013 Astral Artists’ Auditions and Laureate of the 2012 Queen Elizabeth Violin Competition.

The Jubilee Tribute Concert, which begins at 7:30 p.m., includes soprano Sarah Vardy (accompanied by Holliston) singing Puccini and Verdi, and pianist Miranda Wong performing Bach and Ravel.

Tickets are $35. They can be purchased at the door, online at or by phoning 250-386-5311. All proceeds go to the Victoria Conservatory of Music.

— Times Colonist

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