Jean-Michel Blais is a 33-year-old pianist from Montreal whose enchanting instrumental compositions pair melodic pop sensibilities with the breathtaking technical skill of classical minimalism.
Blais grew up in a rural French Catholic town in Quebec bereft of formal music training. At age 11, he began tinkering on his family’s organ, improvising and writing original compositions. A natural talent, by 17 he was invited to the Trois-Rivières Music Conservatory and began training as a classical pianist. Gravitating towards experimentation, he left the school after three years. He later attracted the attention of playwright-director Robert Lepage, before heading to Europe and taking a break from music.
Blais released his debut album of original compositions, Il, in 2016 on Arts and Crafts, condensing two years of daily improvisations into a blindingly bright exploration of piano textures that bridges ethos and musical styles. Il received fantastic reviews, and was one of TIME Magazine’s top 10 albums of the year.
Poemss is Venetian Snares and Joanne Pollock. Their debut album was released on Planet Mu to wide critical acclaim. Poemss has performed in Canada and throughout Europe. They are currently recording their second album.
Doors — 7pm
Poemss — 8pm
Jean-Michel Blais — 9pm