Oscar Clemotte donates his time and talent to help raise money for a Vancouver Island University music program. Clemotte is one of eight acts performing over two days at Diners Rendezvous.

Oscar Clemotte donates his time and talent to help raise money for a Vancouver Island University music program. Clemotte is one of eight acts performing over two days at Diners Rendezvous.

Vancouver Island University music program benefits from fundraiser

Musicians donate time to help raise money to purchase percussion instruments for Nanaimo students

Students in Vancouver Island University’s wind ensemble want to take their music to the next level – but they need the proper equipment to do so first.

Students, faculty and local musicians are donating their time for a fundraising concert at Diners Rendezvous Feb. 8-9.

“We have no percussion instruments,” said instructor Greg Bush.

The money raised will go toward timpani, cymbals, drums and other percussion instruments.

The new instruments will allow the group to expand their repertoire.

“It will take that group to the next level,” Bush said.

VIU’s wind ensemble has been around for 20 years or more, with about 40 students. Wind instrument playing students – clarinet, sax, flute, etc. – are required to participate in the band, but it’s also open to musicians from across campus.

The fundraiser begins Feb. 9 at 7 p.m. with Lauren Bush – Greg’s daughter – and Marty Steele, followed by Oscar Clemotte, 16-piece Georgia Strait Big Band from Courtenay, and Cameron Wigmore.

The second night kicks off with guitarist Eric Harper, followed by the big band Decadence and VIU sax instructor Monik Nordine. The Bananafish Dance Orchestra finishes up the night and the two-day fundraiser.

Through VIU’s alumni association, Thrifty Foods will provide a matching grant to money raised, up to $1,000.

Local music stores volunteered discounts on equipment and students had ideas about used instruments to make the money raised stretch as far as possible, Bush said.

“We can start small,” he said.

Tickets are $25; $15/students; $40/both nights. Please call 250-740-1133 or visit www.dinersrendezvous.ca.

arts@nanaimobulletin.com