VICO Chamber Ensemble: Planh: de temps by Farshid Samandari

About the Music



Janna Sailor, conductor

Mark Takeshi McGregor, flutes
Liam Hockley, clarinet
ZhongXi Wu, sheng
Saina Khaledi, santur
Ali Razmi, tar
Douglas Hensley, oud
Jun Rong, erhu
Sarah Kwok, viola
Mark Haney, contrabass
Brian Nesselroad, percussion

“planh: de temps for a friend is inspired by the troubadour musical form, planh (old Occitan word meaning lament), which was often used in composing a lament for the loss of a great personage or a friend. The composition ofplanh: de tempsstarted in memory of a specific friend; however, throughout the process, influenced by world events, it turned into a lament for a friend more generally, and for these times (de temps). The piece refers to a work by Josquin Deprez. It generally reflects on and reminisces about a life. The struggles of one’s bird of spirit are reflected through brief beating sounds that depict the sound of flapping wings of a bird fluttering. The intercultural ensemble is divided into four groups: three wind instruments, three bowed strings, three plucked strings, and percussion. – Farshid Samandari, Vancouver, November 2020.

About the Artists

Farshid Samandari (composer)s music reflects his interest in contemporary classical vocabulary, spectral analysis, and extended techniques. In addition, his profound faith in Unity in diversity stirs him toward integrating different cultural musics and vocabularies in his compositions. This vision has directed him to collaborate with such ensembles as Tehran National Symphony Orchestra, Vancouver Symphony Orchestra, Vancouver Inter-Cultural Orchestra, Esprit Orchestra, Experimental Studio (Germany), Conlon Disklavier (Netherlands), Red Shift Vertical Orchestra, Atlas Ensemble (Netherlands), Turning Point Ensemble, Motion Ensemble, Musica Nova, Nu:bc Collective, Borealis String Quartet, Emily Carr String Quartet, Standing Wave Ensemble, Red Chamber Quartet, Orchid Ensemble, and Vancouver Peace Choir, as well as soloists such as Karin Aurel, Ariel Barnes, Neal Bennett, Jeremy Berkman, Arnaldo de Felice, Connie Gitlin, Corey Hamm, Rachel Iwaasa, Garth Knox, Mark McGregor, Julie Nesrallah, Julia Nolan, Beth Orson, Heather Pawsey, Suzanne Snizek, Michael Strutt, Yamai Tsunao and Eric Wilson. His music has been presented by Gaudeamus Muziekweek (Netherlands), Musik Forum Viktring (Austria), and the Casalmaggiore Festival (Italy).

Janna Sailor (conductor) is a conductor, violinist, and musical innovator of extraordinary scope and versatility.  Originally from rural Saskatchewan, she began her musical studies at the age of three and began performing with professional orchestras at the age of thirteen. In June 2016, Janna founded the Vancouver-based Allegra Chamber Orchestra, one of the only all-female classical orchestras in the world; an ensemble dedicated to creating opportunities for women and minorities in the music industry, with a mandate of social action through music. The orchestra has been featured on CBC Radio, German Public Radio, Radio ICI, the Strad magazine, The Violin Channel, The Walrus, The Hub magazine, as well as other publications and media outlets across North America and Europe. Janna has conducted major orchestras and ensembles including the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra, the Calgary Philharmonic, the Toronto Mendelssohn Choir, the Vancouver Bach Choir, and the Vancouver Inter-Cultural Orchestra, among others. Janna has held conducting positions with the Vancouver Philharmonic Orchestra, the National Academy Orchestra of Canada, and the Vancouver Youth Symphony Orchestra. In addition to conducting, Janna enjoys a diverse career as violinist, delving into contemporary, world and early music, jazz, and classical crossover, in addition to chamber and solo engagements. Ensembles she has performed with include the Vancouver Opera Orchestra, Vancouver Inter-Cultural Orchestra, Pacific Baroque Orchestra and Tafelmusik.  Janna has served as concertmaster with both the Montreal based l’Orchestre de la Francophonie (2011) and the National Academy Orchestra of Canada (2014).

The Vancouver Inter-Cultural Orchestra, founded in 2001, was one of the first professional concert orchestras devoted specifically to performing new intercultural music on a grand scale. It is currently the only ensemble of its kind in Canada, and one of a only a handful that exist in the world. The VICO brings together musicians and composers from many cultural and artistic communities in the Greater Vancouver area, including Chinese, Taiwanese, Japanese, Indian, Persian (Iranian), Latin and South American, Vietnamese, African, North American and European. The ensemble includes Western strings and winds (violin, viola, cello, contrabass, oboe, flute, clarinet) alongside Chinese erhu, sanxian, zheng, and sheng/suona; Persian kamanche, tar/setar, and tombak; Vietnamese dan bau; percussion from many world music traditions; and a variety of other instruments as required.

Since repertoire for the VICO’s unusual and diverse instrumentation does not already exist, creating new work is an integral component of all our programming. Developing new commissions (over 50 new Canadian works since 2001, and counting!) provides a necessary framework for bringing musicians and composers together to learn from each other, in a uniquely collaborative process. We create and perform music that transcends borders and breaks down barriers, modeling a pathway for integrating non-Western traditional instruments, sounds and techniques into contemporary Canadian classical music.

Video Production Credits

Videography – Alistair Eagle, assisted by Don Xaliman & Camillia Frey

Audio Engineer & Mix – Sheldon Zaharko

Filmed and recorded on June 12, 2021 in the Historic Theatre at The Cultch, in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada.

For the Vancouver Inter-Cultural Orchestra:

Artistic Director & Producer – Mark Armanini

Composer-in-Residence & Senior Project Manager – Farshid Samandari

Production Manager & Communications – Melanie Thompson

Marketing & Production Assistant – Gina Hernandez Sanchez

Operations Manager – Devni De Silva


View the whole Global Soundscapes Festival: Digital Edition 2021 programme.

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Overview of the full Festival programme