Pacific Opera Victoria
Curator, Public Engagement and Host of INSIDE OPERA with Robert Holliston
A popular public speaker and educator, Robert has given pre-performance lectures for Pacific Opera Victoria since 1993. For many years he also served as POV's répétiteur, Chorus Master, and Principal Coach. He hosts Pacific Opera's free community series INSIDE OPERA with Robert Holliston, as well as the new community education series Opera Motifs, and many other community engagement events.
Robert is Head of Keyboard at the Victoria Conservatory of Music, where he also teaches piano and music history and acts as vocal and chamber music coach. He was a founding Director of VCM Opera Studio. He has conducted master classes and workshops with the Vancouver International Song Institute (UBC), the University of Victoria School of Music, Capilano College, Vancouver Opera Guild, Early Music Society of the Islands, the Victoria Symphony, and the Belfry Theatre. At UVic he has taught continuing education courses in music history and hosted travel courses to Santa Fe Opera and New York City.
Robert studied at the Victoria Conservatory of Music under Robin Wood and Winifred Scott Wood, and at the University of British Columbia under Robert Rogers. He has performed in collaboration with many artists in a wide variety of repertoire throughout Canada, the USA, England, New Zealand, and Australia, and he has been heard frequently on CBC Radio. Robert has recorded CDs with the popular salon ensemble Viveza, trombonist Ian McDougall, clarinetist Patricia Kostek, tenor Ken Lavigne, Tom Holliston, Show Business Giants, and members of the Hornby Island Ensemble.
He has collaborated with many of Canada's leading singers, including Benjamin Butterfield, Judith Forst, Ingrid Attrot, Nancy Argenta, Nathalie Paulin, Susan Platts, Richard Margison, Barbara Livingston, and Peter Barcza; string players Eugene Fodor, Marc Destrubé, and Paul Marleyn; and (with Viveza) dancers Karen Kain and Evelyn Hart. In addition, he has participated in such festivals as Juneau Jazz and Classics, Parry Sound, Caraquette, and the Ottawa, Sitka and Orcas Island Chamber Music festivals.
Still an active performer, in recent seasons Robert has been guest concerto soloist with the Sidney Classical Orchestra and the Victoria Symphony.