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Bereavement Announcement - Dr. Elizabeth Lamberton

Photo of Elizabeth Lamberton

We are sad to announce the passing of KPU Faculty Member Dr. Elizabeth Lamberton.

Dr. Elizabeth Lamberton passed away peacefully at Peace Arch Hospital on Tuesday March 1, after a long bout with cancer which she endured with admirable composure. Elizabeth taught musicology as a faculty member at KPU from 1993 to 2012.

Dr. Lamberton began piano studies at age four with her mother, and achieved her A.Mus (Western Board) at age eighteen, winning the silver medal. She completed her B.Mus. with a major in piano at the University of Regina, where she received the University Prize in Arts. She continued her studies at the University of British Columbia, where her focus shifted to musicology, resulting in her M.A. thesis on Brahm's piano quintet in 1978 and her Ph.D. dissertation on the writings of the nineteenth-century French music critic Ernest Reyer in 1988.

Dr. Lamberton's life was shaped by her profound commitment to teaching. She began as a sessional lecturer at UBC in 1989, and joined the music department at KPU in 1993, where she taught music history until illness forced her withdrawal from teaching in 2012. Elizabeth was very involved in the life of the department, and served a term as Chair of the B.C. Post-Secondary Music Forum.

Dr. Lamberton's research led to the presentation of papers on Reyer at chapter meetings of the American Musicological Society and at a national meeting of the Canadian University Music society, as well as to an article on Reyer for the Dictionnaire Berlioz (Paris, 2003). She was active in the arts community as a speaker and a writer on music. In 2001 she was invited by the Vancouver Recital Society to give pre-concert talks and to write program music notes, activities she continued for several years. Elizabeth also cultivated an interest in early music, writing articles for Musick (the quarterly journal of Early Music Vancouver), and serving as a member of the Editorial Committee for nearly a decade.

Although Elizabeth was a historical musicologist, writer, and editor, her zeal was for the front of the classroom. She was passionate about teaching and her heart and face lit up when she spoke about her students. Her students were her family. And her kindness towards them was demonstrated in very practical ways. For example, every Friday she brought treats for those in her music history class. She cared deeply about her students and was always open to those needing assistance in their studies or guidance in their careers. She was an inspiring teacher and mentor to her many students over the years.

Elizabeth requested that there be no memorial service. Donations in her memory may be made to the Peace Arch Hospital or to a charity of choice. Alternately, in celebration of her life, you may want to listen to a recording of piano music by Debussy, the composer who (in addition to the Impressionist artist Monet) was closest to her heart.

Dr. Lamberton was a valued colleague who was dedicated to the development of young musicians and music scholars. Elizabeth was also a very warm and caring soul who will be deeply missed.

Flags will be lowered on all KPU Campuses on Monday, March 7th in memory of Dr. Lamberton.


KPU Music Student Wins

Fraser Valley Symphony Concerto Competition

Yen_Jen_LinCellist, Yen-Jen, a first-year student in KPU's music program has won the Fraser Valley Symphony's Concerto Competition. Yen-Jen’s success is yet another illustration of why KPU’s music program is attracting first-rate students. Prospective students have been choosing our program, with smaller classes and a professional faculty committed to teaching, to guide them in developing a professional career for today’s music industry. We maybe smaller than the big schools, but the training and individual attention music students receive  at KPU is equal to—and even exceeds—what they would receive elsewhere. Congratulations to Yen-Jen. He will be performing the first movement of Dvorak's Cello Concerto with the Fraser Valley Symphony Orchestra Sunday, January31, 2016 in Abbotsford, BC. For further information, please visit:

Violin, Clarinet, and Piano Trio


KPU Chamber Ensemble Wins First Place -

Canadian National Music Festival

First-place wins at local festivals and provincial competitions have crescendoed into national recognition for the AJA Trio.

This past August, the Langley-based group of Kwantlen Polytechnic University (KPU) music students earned the title of being some of Canada’s best young musicians with a first-place win at the 45th National Music Festival.

Students Alexander Chernata on clarinet, Julie Lin on violin, and Andrea Pedro on piano also made KPU history as the first group to place first at the festival. Close to six dozen of Canada’s best amateur musicians and groups performed at the annual event, hosted this year in Alberta by the Federation of Canadian Music Festivals. The AJA Trio competed in the chamber category.

“The AJA Trio news was definitely a music department highlight not just for 2015, but for its history,” said Jane Hayes, KPU's director of piano studies who has worked closely with the trio. ”While we have had former students go on to receive prestigious honours, this award is a first for current students.”

Earlier this year, the AJA Trio astounded audiences and judges alike at the Kiwanis Fraser Valley International Music Festival, the 2015 Performing Arts BC Festival, and the 61st Annual Young Musicians Competition.

“For the trio, this is the kind of accomplishment they will remember for their whole lives. The dedication and time commitment they’ve made results in beautiful-sounding teamwork at the highest level. This really demonstrates the artistic strength of our students,” Hayes said.

Chernata is a second-year performance major and Pedro is entering her third year in the same degree program. Lin’s exceptional talent earned her a place in the trio as a community member.