From a distance, the Roundhouse is known for its large room rentals—with awards ceremonies and festivals celebrating community partners in the Exhibition Hall, and evocative and thought-provoking performances in the Performance Centre. However, beyond this constant current of public productions is a quiet ebb and flow of small room users. These community members contribute to the Centre’s diversity, coming regularly to practice, learn, and share their experience. In the Ebb and Flow series, we will share the stories of these incredibly talented and community-oriented patrons who help to create the rich environment that is the Roundhouse.
Karen Fedoruk, Darryl Fuller, and Victoria Lee have been practicing as a trio at the Roundhouse since 2008. Combining the flute, saxophone and violin, the group’s melodies permeate the Centre weekly and have become a welcome and familiar sound to patrons and staff alike.
While Victoria was introduced to the violin at age five, Darryl’s connection to the saxophone began in high school. After trying his hand for a year with the clarinet, his father recommended he switch, suggesting that the “saxophone is the instrument of jazz.” Darryl gave up the clarinet in his second year of high school and never looked back. Karen’s draw to the flute came later in life, from an admiration of musicians and a desire to learn something new.
Friends since university, Darryl and Karen were looking for opportunities to practice collectively, and decided to start meeting weekly. Not long after forming their duo, they were joined by Victoria, resulting in the current trio. The group chose the Roundhouse based on the Centre’s proximity to each of their workplaces and the availability of space.
With few affordable spaces in Vancouver that accommodate groups such as theirs, the trio is grateful to have the Roundhouse. Practicing at the Centre offers them an opportunity to improve their skills in an environment that feels like home. When asked to share some of their favourite moments at the Roundhouse, Darryl responded:
“One of the things I find most delightful about practicing and playing at the Roundhouse is glancing over towards the door of the room and seeing a toddler with their nose and hands plastered against the window, staring in at us with wide eyes. Those are my favourite moments.”
Karen added that the support of Roundhouse staff, specifically Percy Nacaraio and Arlene Herauf, has gone a long way in enhancing their experience at the Centre.
If you’re visiting the Roundhouse at noon, you might overhear the group firsthand, or you can see Darryl perform with the Vancouver Carnival Band.