A message from Boris & Inna
My late mother Ester, who passed away at the age of 99 in 2019, was the head of all Financial Services for the Kharkiv Tractor Plant from 1947 to 1976 (the plant had quietly supplied tanks to the Allied Forces throughout WWII). Last week, Russia attacked the plant and I watched news footage of the familiar buildings on fire. As a boy, I walked and bussed the 20 kilometers from our apartment in the ХТЗ neighbourhood near the plant, to the specialized school for Musically Gifted Children.
For Inna, who grew up 700 kms away on the Black Sea, Odesa is the city that holds her heart. Her daily walks with her doting grandfather, her visits to the beach... Inna’s father Grisha is buried there- he died while we waited in Canada, with our hands tied, unable to visit because of Soviet restrictions.
The geography there has always been complicated by politics. But Ukraine was our home.
As artists, we cannot stay silent. Off Centre Music Salon joins the world community in condemning Russia's unprovoked invasion of Ukraine. The war is an assault on human values of justice and freedom and we stand with those who oppose this senseless act of aggression.
We grieve the bloodshed and our hearts break for innocent victims of this war.
-Boris Zarankin and Inna Perkis, Founders and Artistic Directors
Presenting classical music in an innovative salon style atmosphere
Held on Sunday afternoons at Toronto’s Trinity-St. Paul's Centre, Off Centre seeks to inspire, educate and entertain by drawing connections between music, history, literature, art, design, and theatre.
Off Centre Music Salon presents: Shostakovich 24 Preludes, a Bechstein Piano and Boris: Telling Life Stories
An "Off Centre" art film, conceived and developed by Inna Perkis and Boris Zarankin
Shostakovich's 24 Preludes for piano, Opus 34 performed on an 1879 Bechstein concert grand piano by Boris Zarankin. Introduction and historical context provided by Dr. Julia Zarankin.
From Glenn Gould to Oscar Peterson
to Boris Zarankin, a piano is a very individual choice
From William Littler at Toronto Star
Pianos are more individual than is sometimes realized. When I was on the jury of the Sydney International Piano Competition in Australia, I noticed that the contestants were offered a choice of four different pianos. Although most initially chose Steinway, by the final round some switched allegiance to Yamaha. Steinway had neglected to send a technician to maintain its piano in tip-top condition.
Boris Zarankin’s 1879 Bechstein from Berlin was by no means in tip-top condition when the Toronto pianist bought it in Seattle many years ago. But after submitting it to a thorough restoration, he found it to be an ideal agent for his recording of Shostakovich’s “24 Preludes.”
Read the full article at Toronto Star
A safe return to Off Centre Music Salon
We are excited to welcome our guests back to Off Centre Music Salon! The safety of our performers, staff and patrons is our top priority. Click here to learn about the COVID-19 audience safety measures we have in place.
June 5, 2022
We often romanticize the image of the creative genius toiling away in an attic, alone. And yet musical creativity is collaborative in nature, and inspiration arises from an intersection of creative forces. Our program explores some of the most vibrant musical intersections of the 19th and 20th centuries and includes inspired exchange between composers and their librettists, patrons, friends, adversaries, and teachers.
Composers: Antonín Dvořák, Johannes Brahms, Valentyn Bibik (Canadian premier) and Volodymyr Nalyvayko (Canadian premier), Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, Giacomo Puccini and Dmitri Shostakovich.
Artists: Andrew Haji, tenor; Andrea Ludwig, mezzo-soprano; Rachael Kerr, piano; Lauren Margison, soprano; Inna Perkis, piano; Rosebud String Quartet; Giles Tomkins, bass-baritone; Boris Zarankin, piano, Ilana Zarankin, soprano.
Host: Dr. Julia Zarankin
Concert Sponsor: Anna & Leslie Dan, and Flavia Morden