Gabriola Chamber Ensemble welcomes Brad Shipley as new musical director

Sue Gould

Gabriola Chamber Ensemble

Tuesday, January 12 2016

The Gabriola Chamber Ensemble is pleased to announce the appointment of Brad Shipley, as their new Musical Director. Brad replaces Leah Hokanson who has been the director for the past five years. Brad has an extensive musical background, a degree in music from VIU, has won many music awards and scholarships and is a well known musician on Gabriola. Both Brad and the GCE are looking forward to the upcoming season.

Former Gabriola Chamber Ensemble Musical Directors, John Capon (right) and Leah Hokanson (left), posing with the Ensemble’s new musical director, Brad Shipley (centre). Submitted photo.

The Gabriola Chamber Ensemble (GCE) is a group of community instrumentalists and singers who share a love of classical music from various periods. While striving to develop in range and complexity, it has a long-term and continuing presence as the only classical ensemble on Gabriola Island. This has expanded a bit to include classical and other genres.

The GCE was formed by John Capon in the mid 1990s as an instrumental group, with singers added a few years later. John handed the baton over to Leah in December, 2009 but he has continued to be involved in the GCE as guest conductor, sometimes joining the orchestra on trombone and occasionally singing with the choir. The GCE is pleased that Leah has agreed to support the GCE, with her many talents, in a similar way that John has.

The GCE is alway open to new members, so if you have some musical experience, and if you love classical music too, please contact Brad Shipley by January 17th. (250-247-9486) ( The Ensemble rehearses Monday evenings at the Gabriola United Church.