The Calgary String Collective

Classical, and a little outside the box

The Calgary String Collective is back!

New Concert Date
Saturday, June 11, 2022 at 2:00 p.m.

Woodcliff United Church
5010 Spruce Drive SW, Calgary AB

Thank you to our audience for making our Christmas Concert such a success.
We hope to see you again.

Photo credits: Lily Wong


Spring Concert Programme 2022

Concerto Grosso No. 5, Charles Avison after D. Scarlatti

Concerto for Violoncello in B minor, RV 424, Antonio Vivaldi

Brandenburg Concerto No. 3 in G major BWV 1048, J.S. Bach


Serenade for Strings, Op. 11, Dag Wiren

Lullaby for String Orchestra, George Gershwin

Shenandoah, American Traditional, arr. Bob Krogstad 

Prairie Dances, Giuseppe Zabaglione


Workshops and Master Classes are planned for each semester. Non-CSC players are welcome to participate. 

If you would like more information, please contact us at


We are now accepting registrations for the Calgary String Collective's (CSC)
2022 Winter/Spring semester

CSC Winter-Spring 2022 Registration Form.pdf

Start date Wednesday, February 16
Wednesday evenings, 7:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. for 16 weeks

Spring Concert
Saturday, June 11, 2022 at 2:00 p.m.
Woodcliff United Church
5010 Spruce Drive SW, Calgary AB

Calgary String Collective COVID-19 Policy

Our top priority as we resume rehearsals is for the health and safety of our players and audience. We continue to monitor the COVID-19 situation and are taking a cautious approach.

To our players please note:

  • All participants must be double vaccinated.
  • Masks must be worn whenever you are in the church.
  • Participants are required not to come to rehearsal if they are not feeling well or if they suspect they may have been exposed to someone with COVID-19.
  • We will not be having snacks or using the kitchen.
As stipulated in our renter's agreement with Woodcliff United Church the following protocols apply:

  • We are required to maintain a list of names and contact information of all participants for each rehearsal (in case it becomes necessary to do contact tracing). A volunteer will be taking attendance as you enter the building.
  • Please remain only in our designated space and use the hand sanitizer stations provided.
The CSC Core Committee will revisit these policies and re-evaluate as conditions change. Thank you for your cooperation. It will be so good to be making music again.

Contact us for more information at
"The Calgary String Collective" - come play with us!

Formed in 2019 we are string orchestra for intermediate to advanced players based in Calgary, Alberta that is completely "player managed" hence the "clever" name!

Our group consists of players that have played together in different ensembles and music camps over the years... Blue Arch Strings, Baroque & Busking (Elisa Janz), Civic, Ambrose, Foothills Philharmonic Orchestra, WCAMS summer camps, Mountainside chamber music retreat, Shivering Strings to name a few. We are a "collective" of accomplished players, adults that started learning instruments later in life and players that are revisiting their instruments after a period of inactivity! In fact, some of our current players have played together in the Calgary Youth Orchestra way back :)

Playing music have forged friendships and a sense of community over the years and we hope that you will join us in making this coming season an awesome one!

"Classical and a little outside the box"

Our tag line is representative of the music we have played together in the past - baroque (a lot of Vivaldi - Elisa's favourite!), classical, new works written for us by Tim Janz, John Abram and Arthur Bachman, Celtic music arranged by Elisa Janz, tangos, and more.

In addition, we have also collaborated with choirs like the German Canadian Male Chorus of Calgary and performed with guest soloists (violin, cello, flute, guitar, lute, harpsichord etc) as well as singers - our favourite being Pergolesi's Stabat Mater. We are also fortunate to have worked with Linda Melsted ( in many workshops through the years. She is a brilliant baroque violinist, an inspiring and passionate musician with a great sense of humour and a lover of cats. That goes a long way in our books :), and of course, the bow in our logo goes beyond the boundaries of the box!! So in essence, we will play anything as long as we play together!

 Robert Penner returns as our Music Director and we look forward to continuing this collaboration.

Rehearsals are scheduled on Wednesday evenings at Woodcliff United Church, 5010 Spruce Drive SW, Calgary, Alberta ( Our Winter/Spring season will start on January 12, 2022

Please feel free to contact us at if you have any questions


Robert Penner

Robert was born in Winnipeg, Manitoba, began playing the violin at the age of nine, and in orchestras a year later. His professional career includes three years as Assistant Concertmaster of the Regina Symphony Orchestra and 32 years a member of the first violin section of the Calgary Philharmonic. 

He holds a B. Mus. from Brandon University where he studied with the late Francis Chaplin. Robert is also a baroque music specialist, having studied with Jean Lamon, Stanley Ritchie, and Mark Destrubé. He has performed with the internationally acclaimed Tafelmusik and the Pacific Baroque Orchestra. 

He studies conducting with Gareth Jones at the University of Calgary, and participated in the SAITO International Conducting Workshop in 2021.

Robert also has extensive chamber music experience. He was a founding member of the Kensington Sinfonia and the Zabaglione String Quartet, with which he performed throughout Alberta. Cellist Tom Megee is a frequent collaborator, and the duo have played numerous concerts through the CPO’s Outreach and Education programs for children and seniors in Calgary. Robert continues to play in a number of other chamber ensembles.

Retired from orchestral performance since 2015, Robert has devoted himself to teaching and coaching violinists of all levels. He gives masterclasses through a broad range of repertoire and is a continuing coach of the Calgary Community String Orchestra, where he also coaches small ensembles. He continues to pass his expertise and love of music to new generations of musicians through adjudicating string classes for various music festivals around Alberta, as well as coaching the annual Youth Orchestra Symposium in Banff. He has been Music Director of the Calgary String Collective since 2019.

Robert’s mission is to bring joy through music with compassion, insight, generosity, and his signature good humor.

The CSC is a string orchestra for adult intermediate to advanced level players. There are no auditions for entry. Admission is at the discretion of the Music Director. Ideally players should have reached RCM Level 8 or higher. It is possible for players at RCM Level 7 to play most of the repertoire on our programmes, however to play the more advanced repertoire it is recommended to have the guidance of a music teacher.

Please fill in our registration form. You can scan or take a picture of the completed form and email it to us at

CSC Winter-Spring 2022 Registration Form.pdf