Mark Fewer and Daniel Janke have worked together on numerous concert and film projects over the years. They first met when Daniel was producing a CD for the Continuum Ensemble of Toronto (1998 – CR-CD 9801). The duo also collaborated on three solo violin pieces for the dance work Cinco Puntos Cardinales with Danza Contemporanea of Lima, Peru (2011 – CMCCD 16911). Mark Fewer was featured on Daniel Janke’s score for the award-winning film Touch, directed by Jeremy Podeswa. Mark recently recorded Daniel’s composition Martha Black’s Reel for the Naxos label.
Their recording release Celestial Blue is a culmination of their desire to explore this musical connection through a series of duets. While the music is for the most part through-composed, there are elements of improvisation or comprovisation in some of the work. One will also find strong references to gospel and other folk traditions: music that resonates deeply for both Mark, with his Newfoundland roots, and Daniel, with his Ontario gospel roots. The title, Celestial Blue, is a reference to wide open blue sky and all the possibilities it implies.