Abbotsford native tenor Colin Balzer performs this month at the Blueridge Chamber Music Festival in Vancouver.

Tenor Colin Balzer performs at Blueridge Chamber Music Festival

Abbotsford native is now living in Germany

Tenor Colin Balzer, a native of Abbotsford, is doing double duty this summer.

The renowned singer, now based in Germany, performed a recital at the Vancouver Bach Festival on Aug. 2. This week, he makes his debut at the Blueridge Chamber Music Festival.

Balzer takes the stage in a rare complete performance of the Austrian composer Hugo Wolf’s Italian Songbook (Italienisches Liederbuch), a cycle of saucy and heartfelt little vignettes about love, heartbreak, and community life.

He appears alongside Vancouver soprano Dory Hayley and New York pianist Manuel Laufer.

The concert also features original poetry by Blueridge’s 2018 poet in residence, the acclaimed Vancouver-based Métis/Icelandic writer Carleigh Baker.

The concert takes place on Aug. 11 (Orpheum Annex) and Aug. 12 (Mount Seymour United Church) at 7 p.m.

Balzer received his formal musical training at the University of B.C. and also attended both the Britten-Pears School in Aldeburgh, England, and the Franz Schubert Institut in Baden, Austria.

Balzer has established an international career with repertoire ranging from the 17th to 20th century.

He has appeared in concerts, operas, festivals and recitals across Europe, North America and Asia, including with the Scottish Chamber Orchestra, Luxembourg Symphony, Het Brabants Orkest, Toronto’s Tafelmusik and many more.

Balzer holds the distinction of earning the gold medal at the Robert Schumann Competition in Zwickau, Germany, with the highest score in 25 years.

The Blueridge Chamber Festival runs from Aug. 8 to 19.Tickets and more information are available online at blueridgechamber.org.

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