Most people are lucky if they have one artistic skill, and luckier still if they're able to pursue it professionally. Shirley Elias has been lucky a few times over; her first success as a concert pianist, and now she has found another calling as a painter." - Edmonton Journal
colour of music
Pianist Shirley Elias stormed on stage in gold tails and took control, evoking a brooding mood backed by the driving rhythms of the orchestra. - Winnipeg Sun, Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra International New Music Festival, Recorded live by CBC Radio Two
I first stepped out into the artistic world as a concert pianist, with performances across Canada, frequent broadcasts on CBC’s Radio Two and solo and orchestral CD recordings. While there were many memorable moments (including one night when all the lights in the concert hall went during my big solo in the middle of a concerto!), probably the biggest highlight for me was performing "The Adventures of PianoWoman"®!, a work written for me and the Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra's International New Music Festival, with GRAMMY® award-winning Conductor Maestro Bramwell Tovey. The composer had me playing 2 pianos at the same time, complete with split costume - definitely a tour de force and sweat inducing, and an absolute blast. Thank you Randolph Peters for an amazing creation.
From the concert stage I communicated with sound colours, and now with paint, I find I'm drawn to the same big energies. Vibrant bold colors. Engaging movement. Rhythm. Composition. Stimulation. And always most important to me - generating a smile!
Art had always been a passion of mine, alongside the music. It was a natural extension for me and the evolution from keyboard to canvas was pretty seamless. Both artforms require determination, focus and lots of creativity in the studio – every single day. With 10,000 art hours well behind me, I've developed a unique style and use of textures which has led to a high demand for the work around the world. My latest project involved a major exhibition together with a symphony orchestra. Check out my Spectrum page to read all about it. It was definitely a project of a lifetime.
Music is the heart of Elias' paintings... (she) works with a vivid palette of colours. Fusing elements of pop art, modern cubism, marigold-colored swirls trumpet off the canvas, as one could imagine sound resonating from an orchestra. Black and cobalt details anchor the paintings, while glints of metallic paint add light and interest. - Edmonton Journal
expanding the connection
I always paint "gallery wrap", which is just fancy speak for painting the sides of the canvas. Just like music floats off the stage, I want the paintings to also "spill" off the canvas and keep the eye moving. Since my eyes seem to be always moving and looking for the next adventure, expanding the Elias brand past the original art also feels seamless. One of the fashion pieces just made its movie debut! Check out the website for all the options.
Prints - paper, canvas, metal
Fashion - for the body and home
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