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Jazz and Blues at Trius, plus new chairs for Ontario Wine Council, WGAO


Note: The Trius Jazz & Blues fest is coming up quickly. This is one of the highlights in Niagara for the summer festival season. Also, some wine industry news is posted below.

(All information supplied by the source)

For 24 years, Trius Jazz & Blues at the Winery has been bringing premier Canadian talent to Niagara wine country. On July 13, Trius Jazz will showcase the talents of Ranee Lee, Michael Occhipinti, Ron Davis and Heillig Manoeuvre. Rocking the Trius Blues stage on August 10 will be Paul Deslauriers, Rita Chiarelli, Dawn Tyler Watson and Son Roberts.

The annual Trius Jazz & Blues at the Winery began in 1989 with the intent of bringing premier Canadian jazz and blues talent to wine country and serving it up with premium wines and wine country cuisine.


Originally a ‘bring-your-own-lawn chair’ event, the concert has evolved into a best-in-class jazz and blues event with a variety of different ticket options and experiences available. These experiences include: Vineyard Lawn Seating, Trius Red Lounge, Trius Winery Restaurant Patio Seating and Backstage Pass.

Some of the best Trius wines will be sold alongside the finest wine country fare in Chef Frank Dodd’s Market, where all of the food is seasonally inspired and locally sourced. New this year at Trius Jazz & Blues at the Winery – Trius is spotlighting their award-winning Trius Brut and Trius Brut Rosé with a Sparkling Wine Bar, featuring gourmet snack pairings which include popcorn and ice cream by Chef Frank Dodd.

Tickets start at $40 per person and are available here or by calling 1.800.582.8412 ext. 2. Gates will open at 2 pm and the concert takes place from 4 pm to 8 pm

Follow @TriusWines on Twitter and like /TriusWines on Facebook for all the latest Trius Jazz & Blues at the Winery news and updates and be sure to use the #TriusBlues and #TriusJazz hashtags.

Artist Highlights

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Trius Jazz at the Winery:

Ranee Lee

Juno Award winner, Ranee Lee is one of Canada’s most popular jazz vocalists. She began her career as an actress, both writing and taking part in live performances. She later explored her musical talents and recorded 10 jazz albums. Her album, Ranee Lee Lives Upstairs won her Vocal Jazz Album of the Year at the 2010 Juno Awards.

Michael Occhipinti

Eight-time Juno nominee, Michael Occhipinti is a highly-acclaimed guitarist and composer. Michael has experimented with a wide variety of musical genres including jazz, funk, chamber music, world music and others that involve a modern guitar sound. Michael’s latest project, Shine On: The Universe of John Lennon – is a tribute to Lennon’s music both on his own and with The Beatles.

Ron Davis

Ron Davis is a virtuoso pianist and an entertainer. On any given night, Ron’s set list might include Coldplay, The Beatles, Jimi Hendrix or Art Tatum. The result is a mix of instrumental and experimental. To date, Ron has released seven full length albums and is currently working on two more to be released in 2013 – Blue Modules and Symphronica.

Heillig Manoeuvre

Founded in 1998 by bassist Henry Heillig, Heillig Manoeuvre remains a well known jazz group today. Heillig Manoeuvre’s hit, Ladybug Waltz, was released in 2004 and can still be heard frequently on the popular music stations including Jazz FM. The other members of the quartet include pianist Stacie McGregor, saxophonist Alison Young and drummer Charlie Cooley.

Trius Blues at the Winery:

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Rita Chiarelli

Rita is Canada’s most highly-acclaimed female roots and blues artist. A Juno Award winner and winner of major Canadian blues awards, including multiple Maple Blues Awards and CBCs Great Canadian Blues Award, Rita is known as the “Goddess of the Blues” across Canada. She recently released the soundtrack for her award winning documentary, Music From The Big House, her 9th recording and she recently appeared on CBC Radio’s Q with Jian Ghomeshi.

Paul Deslauriers

A virtuoso on both electric and acoustic guitars, Paul Deslauriers is part of Canada’s guitar elite and is considered one of Quebec’s overall best guitarists. He won the Lys Blues Award for Best Artistic Performance in 2011, Album of the Year in 2008 (En Duo), and Best Musical Performance in 2005. Deslauriers is also a talented vocalist and songwriter. Since 1997 he has fronted the Paul Deslauriers Band, and proudly demonstrates his love of rock and blues roots.

Dawn Tyler Watson

In the past two decades, singer, actor and songwriter, Dawn Tyler Watson has earned her place among Canada’s Blues elite. She won the award for Canadian Female Vocalist of the Year at the Maple Blues Awards, she is a six-time consecutive winner of the Quebec Lys Blues Award in the same category and was the Female International Artist of the Year at the Trophées France Blues. Watson’s duo performance with Paul Deslauriers placed her in the top 10 out of 234 acts at the American Blues Awards International Blues Competition in Memphis, TN.

Son Roberts

Son Roberts is a rising star in the vibrant and diverse Toronto blues and roots scene. His second album, Tell That Story brings him to the forefront as a singer-songwriter. On the album, he is supported by a musical crew that includes Juno award winners and nominees, world famous players and supremely gifted new artists.


New chair for the Ontario Wine Council

Wine Council of Ontario elects new Chair President of VinelandWith over 25 years experience in the Canadian wine industry, the incoming Chairman of the Wine Council of Ontario will be using his winemaking roots, marketing expertise and dedication for quality wines to inspire consumer loyalty for Ontario wines and work to drive an increase in distribution opportunities.

Allan Schmidt, President and Managing Partner of Vineland Estates Winery in Vineland, was elected as the new chair of the Wine Council of Ontario (WCO) at today’s board meeting. He replaces Ed Madronich of Flat Rock Cellars who has spent his four-year term sharing his passion for Ontario wines with a focus towards fostering awareness and dedication to Ontario wines by Ontarians.

“Since moving to Ontario I have seen our industry show an inspiring evolution from just under 25 wineries to over 125, in a span of only 25 years.  I am proud to be part of this amazing growth and am committed to championing opportunities to increase distribution for the quality wines we produce in our province,” said Allan Schmidt.

“Allan is leading the Wine Council of Ontario at a very exciting time. Our 87 members from across the province have a shared vision of growth and I know that Allan’s leadership is focused on getting them there,” said Hillary Dawson, President of the Wine Council of Ontario.

Schmidt’s background in the world of grape growing and winemaking began in the wine region of the Okanagan Valley in British Columbia in addition to working in California and Germany. In 1987, he moved to Ontario to take up the position of Winemaker and General Manager of Vineland Estates Winery for founder Herman Weis. Today, Allan holds the position of President and Managing Partner where he has used his many skills to develop this winery into one of Niagara’s premiere wine and culinary experiences. He also serves on numerous industry boards including the Canadian Vintner’s Association (CVA), the Niagara Wine Festival and the Ontario Grape and Wine Research Inc (OGWRI).

As a new chair, Allan’s efforts will be supported by a strong Board of Directors that elected Len Pennachetti of Cave Spring Cellars as Vice-chair, Jeff Aubry of Coyote’s Run Estate Winery as Secretary, Norm Beal of Peninsula Ridge Estates Winery as Treasurer, Caroline Granger of The Grange of Prince Edward Vineyards and Estate Winery as Governance Officer. Newman Smith of Strewn Winery also joins the team as a new member to the Board.


WGAO elects new chair

The Board of Directors of the Winery & Grower Alliance of Ontario (WGAO) announced the election of veteran industry executive Jim Clark of Colio Estate Wines as the new Chair of the Board.

A founding board member of the WGAO, Clark began his wine career more than 35 years ago developing and purchasing wines at Vintages for the LCBO and in Senior Sales and Retail Management at Vincor Canada.  For the past 16 years, Clark has been the President of Colio Estate Wines and is a strong community leader supporting various charitable organizations including the Princess Margaret Weekend to End Breast Cancer, Ontario Special Olympics and Easter Seals.  Clark is also a Board member of the Canadian Vintners Association and VQA Ontario and previously VQA Canada board.

“I am delighted to become Chair of our important and growing association that represents both leading wineries and grape growers in Ontario,” said Clark.  “Never has it been more important than today to be part of the Ontario wine economy as we create more than $3 billion in economic impact, 14,000 jobs and $644 million in tourism contribution to the province,” added Clark.

The Board would also like to thank the inaugural Chair Anthony Bristow of Andrew Peller Limited.   Bristow was instrumental in creating the Winery & Grower Alliance of Ontario in 2009 along with the founding wineries and grape growers.

“In just four years, the WGAO has grown to represent more than 85% of all Ontario wine sold in the province,” said Patrick Gedge President and CEO, WGAO.  “Anthony was a leading force in creating WGAO and establishing our organization as a significant and credible voice for wineries and growers in Ontario.”

Murray Marshall, President & CEO, Diamond Estates Wines & Spirits Ltd. was elected Vice Chair and Stu Morgan, grape grower, as Secretary/Treasurer.

The WGAO also welcomed Paul A. Bosc, President, Château des Charmes, Sean Taylor, Vice President, Constellation Brands and Greg Berti, Vice President, Andrew Peller Limited as new board members.

We continue to be focused on the growth of the entire wine industry through improved government policy and regulation to increase Ontario wine sales and create continuing demand for Ontario grown grapes,” said Gedge.