Blog Contributors

alex-bioAlex Pauk – Music Director, Conductor, and Composer

Alex Pauk had much to do with revitalizing Canadian orchestral musical life for composers by founding Esprit Orchestra in 1983. Through building the Orchestra and sustaining its high calibre performances, commissioning programme, innovative programming, recordings, and education and outreach initiatives, Pauk has made Esprit a major force for developing and promoting Canadian music at home and abroad. In 2007, Alex Pauk was awarded the prestigious Canada Council for the Arts Molson Prize, and in 1999 was named Musician of the Year by peers at the Toronto Musicians’ Association. A leader in taking new music out of the concert hall, Pauk has led the Esprit Orchestra in performances in alternative locations such as night clubs, art galleries and the outdoors. He has a wide range of experience as a composer with works for theatre, film and television, dance companies, and every kind of performing ensemble.

In 2014, Alex Pauk was appointed to the Order of Canada, Canada’s highest civilian honour.


alexina-bioAlexina Louie – Composer

Alexina Louie is one of the most highly respected and performed composers in Canada. Her desire for self-expression, her recognizable sound world, as well as her explorations of Asian music, art, and philosophy have contributed to the development of her unique voice. She has composed music for soloists, ensembles, orchestras, as well as for television, dance, and film.  Conductors of her music include Leonard Slatkin, Sir Andrew Davis, Kent Nagano, Charles Dutoit, Peter Oundjian, Pinchas Zukerman, Ingo Metzmacher, among others. She has received many commissions, awards, and prizes and is one of the most in demand composers in Canada. Burnt Toast, a ground-breaking made-for-TV domestic comic opera she created, was awarded the Grand Prix at the prestigious 43rd Golden Prague Film Festival (2006).  As well as being a multiple JUNO award winner, she has won the Chalmers Award and the Léger Prize.

In 2005 Ms. Louie was invested as an Officer of the Order of Canada.


rachel-bioRachel Gauntlett – Operations Manager

Rachel is a Toronto native, classically trained cellist, and arts administrator with a deep love and appreciation for new music. She holds two degrees in music performance, as well as a post graduate diploma in arts administration. As a cellist, Rachel has performed throughout North America, including at Lincoln Center in New York, and she has premiered new solo and chamber works by composers across the country. Prior to starting with Esprit, Rachel worked at the Newfoundland Symphony Orchestra developing their education and outreach programs, as well as at the Canadian Opera Company assisting with their Free Concert Series. On her spare time, Rachel enjoys teaching her cello students, aged four to adult.


steven-bioSteven Hobé – CEO, HOBÉ+HOSOKAWA INC.

Steven began his career in the television industry in the late 80’s, working as on-air host for the Life Channel Satellite Network. Over the next decade, whilst completing his University degree, Steven gained experience in documentary filmmaking and commercial production. At age 30, he formed his first marketing & communications firm, and then in 2002 went on to establish Madog Marketing & Design. Finally, in partnership with Creative Director, Mitsuo Hosokawa, the company re-branded in 2012 to form HOBÉ+HOSOKAWA INC. Steven is also an avid lover of music theory, having studied at the RCM, and is currently working on his ARCT piano performance repertoire. He is a strong advocate for Esprit Orchestra and contemporary classical music – to this end, over the past two years, his company has been creating and producing The Musical Mind video series, in order to raise the orchestra’s online profile.