Maestro Gidon Kremer to perform at Bath Medium Security Institution on November 1, 2021

Looking at the Stars is announcing that classical violinist Maestro Gidon Kremer’s Canadian and U.S. Tour, celebrating his 75th Birthday, will include an historic concert at the Bath Medium Security Institution, in Bath, ON, on Monday, November 1, 2021, at 6:00 p.m. Kremer will be joined by a string quintet from his orchestra Kremerata Baltica.

His engagement at Bath Medium Security Institution, on November 1, marks the violinist’s second event with Looking at the Stars. In 2020, he performed at the Pacific Institution/Regional Treatment Centre while on tour in British Columbia. He was also appointed Honorary President of Looking at the Stars after seeing the effect of a classical performance on the inmates and felt the need to endorse the work of this now six-year-old charitable arts organization.

The performance at the Bath Medium Security Institution will feature Kremer and five string musicians from his orchestra, performing a program that celebrates the 100th Anniversary of Astor Piazzolla and the 75th Birthday of Kremer, with a special homage to Canada’s own Glenn Gould. Kremer founded his orchestra Kremerata Baltica 20 years ago. The orchestra consists of the best young musicians from the Baltic States (Lithuania, Estonia and Latvia).

Return to Prison

Lithuanian pianist Darius Mažintas received six standing ovations and interacted with the grateful crowd of 80 Canadian prisoners at Millhaven Maximum Security Institution and Bath Medium Security Institution on October 5. The deeply emotional performance of Chopin’s Nocturnes program mesmerized the audience. The men wouldn’t let pianist Darius Mažintas leave the gym.

Looking at the Stars enjoyed a very successful return “back to business,” gifting interactive classical music concerts to Canadian federal prisoners after nearly two years of a pandemic-related forced absence from these venues.

Looking at the Stars Lithuania

Looking at the Stars is successfully setting foot in the European Union. Our Lithuanian team presented FIVE classical music events to three Lithuanian prisons and a special last-minute event to refugees from Afghanistan, Iran and Iraq in a local Refugee Reception Centre in Rukla.

Top Lithuanian performers, pianist Darius Mazintas, violinist Dalia Dedinskaite and cellist Gleb Pyshniak gifted classical music masterpieces from Chopin, Halvorsen, Schuman, and others to an audience of approximately 500 inmates and 100 refugees.

Our prison concerts are actively supported by the Prison Department of the Lithuanian Ministry of Justice. All four prison concerts were attended by the Head of the Department and his cabinet members.

Except for the Refugee event, which was a last-minute surprise, all concerts were covered by Lithuanian National media. We are encouraged by the reception our events received and we are looking forward to many more such events in the future.

Behind the Scenes of our newest documentary video

We recorded our second video documentary “Reclamation,” produced in cooperation with  Henry Less Productions.

It features an emotional performance by parolee James Ruston, who will share his dramatic life story, accompanied by stellar presentations of Brahms, Shostakovich, Faure, Britten and Prokofiev, performed by a trio of outstanding performers that Looking at the Stars Foundation has worked with before — violinist  Barry Shiffman, cellist Cameron Crozman and pianist Philip Chiu.

We are hoping that “Reclamation” will serve as a testimonial to the success of our classical music gifting program in correctional institutions.

To hear more about this new video project, subscribe for updates by clicking here. We are planning to release this new documentary to the public on social media and to CSC venues at the end of August 2021.

Lukas Geniušas: concerto al Teatro Carlo Felice di Genova (S. Rachmaninov, L. Desyatnikov)

Our Founding Artist, Lukas Geniušas, presents a sublime performance recently in Genoa. We appreciate Lukas’ continuing support of Looking at the Stars Foundation.

[UPDATE] Anniversary Celebration Video Concert Presentations Begin

On January 11, 2021, our 5th Anniversary Celebration Video Concert made its debut at Bath Medium Institution, where Looking at the Stars presented its first ever live classical music gift to Correctional Service Canada five years ago. This international production, featuring our Founding Artist, Lukas Geniušas, includes an introduction by former inmate, James Ruston, and closing remarks by our Founder and CEO, Dmitri Kanovich. We wish to extend our sincere gratitude to Warden Ryan Beattie, Assistant Warden Gordon Zuber, the institution’s Information Technology team, and everyone who cooperated to make this presentation available to the prisoners at Bath.

This is the first in a series of video concert presentations that will be presented at a number of Correctional Service Canada institutions over the coming weeks and months. Although current COVID-19 restrictions prohibit us from organizing more of our previous live concert presentations for the foreseeable future, we hope that this video concert presentation, and others we hope to create in the year ahead, will serve to bring a glimmer of hope and dignity to those who suffer the double isolation of incarceration and pandemic protocols.

[UPDATE] We have received more than a dozen written responses from prisoners at Bath Medium Institution who attended these first screenings of our 5th Anniversary Celebration Video Concert. We were particularly moved by this one.

Like most not-for-profit organizations in Canada at this time, our ability to raise funds to support our work has been severely constrained. If you would like to assist us with the funding requirements to produce these alternative video concert presentations, please consider making a donation on our CanadaHelps donation page or visit our GoFundMe project. Your support is essential to the success of our mission.

Classical music triumphs over despair

We are unique. We gift Classical Music to those who need it most and expect it least. We are not pursuing photo opportunities. We are committed to bring dignity and hope to our audiences on a regular basis. Since 2015 we have gifted 49 classical music concerts to almost 3,500 inmates of federal correctional institutions & 1500 residents of long term care institutions in Canada. Our performers include internationally acclaimed musicians such as virtuoso violinist Maestro Gidon Kremer, pianist Lukas Geniušas, Chamber Soloists of The Toronto Symphony Orchestra, violinists Jonathan Crow, Barry Shiffman, cellist Joseph Johnson and others.

If you love classical music and are compassionate, this unusual video presentation may inspire you.

Dmitri Kanovich, Chairman, Founder and CEO
Looking at the Stars Foundation


Meghan Booth speaks with Dmitri Kanovich about our work

Our Founder and CEO, Dmitri Kanovich, was invited to speak with Meghan Booth about the motivation and effects of our work with Looking at the Stars in federal prisons in Canada.


[VIDEO] Our very own Lukas Geniušas performs via live stream August 25, 2020

Bravo to our Founding Artist, Lukas Geniušas , for his live stream performance at the 16th International Music Festival “Chopin and his Europe,” on the same stage in Warsaw, Poland, where he won Silver ten years ago in the Chopin International Competition. Looking at the Stars is humbled and honoured by Lukas’ continuing commitment to the Foundation’s mission.


As we approach our fifth anniversary…

Commemorative medallion received from CSC Commissioner Anne Kelly to acknowledge our contributions to the federal prison system’s rehabilitation efforts.

As we approach the fifth anniversary of the founding of the Looking at the Stars Foundation, we are compelled to take stock of the work we have done in this relatively brief time.  As we pivoted from presenting our classical music gifts to seniors’ homes and long-term care facilities to delivering world-class classical music recitals to prison audiences, we have gifted 39 classical music concerts to more than 3,500 prisoners in Canadian federal institutions.

Looking at the Stars Foundation founder, Dmitri Kanovich, with CSC Commissioner Anne Kelly.

Recently our contributions to the rehabilitation of federal prison populations were acknowledged by Correctional Service Canada (CSC) Commissioner Anne Kelly. We are in regular contact with CSC staff and our audience, and we are planning to continue our program this Fall. Please stay tuned as these opportunities develop. We look forward to continuing our Mission to affirm the humanity of prisoners and bring hope to those who may not have much.

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