Tibo Kölmel

Tibo Kölmel

Nelson cellist recognized

Classical music student Tibo Kölmel is the recipient of the Ian Douglas Smith Memorial Award.

Four years ago, Tibo Kölmel saw local musician Jeff Faragher give an amazing cello performance, and he was hooked.  Within a week the 12-year-old guitar player had his hands on a cello and was starting to learn.

He studied under teacher Nadia Hall and now the Grade 11 student has been awarded the Ian Douglas Smith Memorial Award. This award goes to a promising and deserving classical music student chosen by adjudicators of the Kootenay Festival of the Arts. The festival is held every year, alternating between Nelson and Trail.

“I was very happy with this decision,” says Nelson Music Festival chair Wendy Herbison. “Tibo plays very musically and sensitively. He has demonstrated an amazing degree of progress each year since he started only four years ago.”

The award was established by local residents Dave and Molly Smith to honour their son, Ian Douglas, who died on Oct. 27, 2013 at age 31.

Ian Smith was always passionate about music. Studying under Herbison, he became an accomplished violinist and much-loved music teacher, playing for a time with the University of Calgary Orchestra.

Ian Douglas Smith

As a tribute, the Smith family established an endowed scholarship fund with Osprey Community Foundation. The capital in the fund continues to grow, and it is already generating a small award each year.

Osprey is a public, charitable foundation, created in 2000 by and for the people of Nelson and the surrounding area. Donations to Osprey are pooled in a permanently-endowed fund, generating income each year that flows back to local charities and eligible organizations. Osprey’s overall endowment now exceeds $6.3 million. For further information or to donate, please go to ospreycommunityfoundation.ca or call 250-352-3643.

Tibo Kölmel, recipient of this year’s Ian Douglas Smith Memorial Award, meeting acclaimed cellist Yo-Yo Ma after a Vancouver Symphony Orchestra concert last month.