BMus in Piano Performance from Wilfrid Laurier University
MMus in Collaborative Piano Performance from McGill University
Wolfville, Nova Scotia
Canada B4P 2R6
Collaborative pianist, Mary Castello, is the newly appointed Staff Accompanist for the School of Music at Acadia University in Wolfville, Nova Scotia. She holds an MMus in Collaborative Piano Performance from McGill University, where she studied with Michael McMahon. Originally from Kitchener, Ontario, Mary received a BMus in Piano Performance from Wilfrid Laurier University, as a student of Leslie De’Ath.
Mary spent the 2016-2017 season as a member of the Yulanda M. Faris Young Artists Program at Vancouver Opera, where she had the privilege of acting as principal repetiteur for their production of Hansel and Gretel, with conductor, Alexander Prior, and chorus rehearsal pianist for Otello and Dead Man Walking, with conductors, Jonathan Darlington and Kinza Tyrrell, during Vancouver Opera’s inaugural festival. Mary also provided musical leadership for the young artist school tour production, Opera Tales, and the young artist production of Viardot’s Cendrillon.
Spring 2017 saw Mary working for Opera on the Avalon’s summer festival, as pianist for their school tour production of Dean Burry’s The Brothers Grimm, and rehearsal pianist for the mainstage production of Dead Man Walking.
Mary is passionate about collaborative music-making in many forms, to include instrumental duos, chamber music, vocal art song, and opera, but she has a special love for working with singers. Mary holds an Associate Diploma in Piano Pedagogy from Conservatory Canada, and enjoys teaching piano, theory, history, and musicianship to students of all ages. She has experience as a choir accompanist and sectional leader, having worked at Stirling Avenue Mennonite Church, and with the Inter-Mennonite Children’s Choir in Kitchener for several years. Mary was the 2011 recipient of the Abner Martin Music Scholarship.
Mary developed her skills as a collaborative pianist and an operatic répétiteur at Opera NUOVA in Edmonton, AB (Albert Herring and L’Elisir d’Amore with conductor Rosemary Thomson), and Centre for Opera Studies in Italy in Sulmona, Italy (Così fan tutte with conductor Leslie Dala). Mary was a répétiteur for recent Opera McGill productions of Suor Angelica, Gianni Schicchi, Little Women, and L’Elisir d’Amore, with conductors Boris Brott, Christopher Larkin, and Patrick Hansen.
In July of 2016, Mary participated in the Franz-Schubert-Institut Master Course “Poetry and Performance of the German Lied” in Baden Bei Wien, Austria, where she performed in masterclasses given by Helmut Deutsch, Julius Drake, Wolfram Rieger, Roger Vignoles, Elly Ameling, Olaf Bar, Robert Holl, Andreas Schmidt, and Birgid Steinberger.