Skip to content

Group unshackles virtuoso sounds in North Okanagan community concert

Oktopus play Vernon and District Performing Arts Centre Oct. 11
Eight virtuoso musicians who call themselves Oktopus take to the Vernon and District Performing Arts Centre stage Wednesday, Oct. 11, as part of the North Okanagan Communtiy Concert Association series. ( photo)

With a band name like Oktopus, you’d expect there to be eight members of the group.

And there are.

The North Okanagan Community Concert Association presents Oktopus on Wednesday, Oct. 11, at 7:30 p.m., at the Vernon and District Performing Arts Centre.

With more than 250 performances at home and abroad, the Canadian group is primarily devoted to klezmer – the musical heritage of Eastern European Jews — distinguished by a novel approach that incorporates components of classical, Quebecois and jazz repertoires.

The group’s eight virtuoso musicians offer high-energy performances sprinkled with humour and spiced with narrative, in which original compositions and finely crafted arrangements combine with improvisation. Its members’ shared passion and hard work are what make each of their performances so memorable.

Oktopus is simply… spectentacular (as in “tentacles,” not “oktucles”).

Oktopus’ distinctive music is rooted in the klezmer tradition, reflecting the rich history of a thousand-year-old community. Musicians of yesteryear incorporated in their repertoire the music they encountered on their journeys, and just like them, the members of Oktopus are inspired by the music they hear throughout their own travels.

Classical composers such as Bartók, Brahms, Prokofiev and Enescu are rearranged by the octet, particularly classical works derived from folk themes. Quebec songwriters such as Leclerc and Vigneault are also sources of inspiration.

After forming in 2010, Oktopus has gone on to release three albums that have been internationally recognized for both virtuosity and creativity as well as a Canadian first in Bratislava, winning the “Special prize for the most creative fusion of ancient and contemporary music traditions.”

In 2021, the group released its third album, Créature, which earned nominations for Instrumental Group of the Year at the Canadian Folk Music Awards and World Music Album of the Year at the Opus Awards.

Tickets are available at TicketSeller 250-549-7469,

Individual tickets: $40/Adult & $20/Youth (22 and under).

READ MORE: Vernon-based videographer shares 1977 Okanagan weekend

READ MORE: Valley Voices features award-winning Okanagan authors

Roger Knox

About the Author: Roger Knox

I am a journalist with more than 30 years of experience in the industry. I started my career in radio and have spent the last 21 years working with Black Press Media.
Read more