Michael Eckert-Lyngstad BMus. BEd. Dip.Mus. RMT
820 4th Avenue NE
Swift Current, Saskatchewan
I am Swift Current born and bred. My Dad, Sherman, played in dance bands in the 60s and 70s all over Southwest Saskatchewan. He owned the local music store, Music Village, where I got my first guitar lessons at age 5. He and my mom Doreen have been providing the most beautiful plants around to the citizens of the Southwest as the owners/operators of Riverdene Garden Centre since the mid-Eighties.
I moved to Edmonton to pursue Jazz Guitar studies at MacEwan University in 1995, earning a Diploma in Jazz Guitar Performance with distinction as "Most Improved Student" in 1997. In 1998 further musical enrichment called my name - leading to attendance at the University of Alberta and resulting in a Bachelor degree in Music with Dean's List and First Class Standing on Classical Guitar in 2001 and a Bachelor degree in Education in 2003. Since 2003 I have been engaged in ongoing private study of Music and Guitar Performance with Carl Lotsberg, Professor of Guitar and Lute studies at the University of Alberta. Through the past 15 years I have attended numerous concerts and master classes presented by the worlds leading classical guitarists where I was able to get an inside view of what makes a master musician tick.
Professional Teaching Experience
My professional teaching career began at St. Albert, Alberta's Visionary College in 1997. From 2005 to 2012 I served as faculty at MacEwan University in Edmonton as a teacher of students of all ages and abilities in both group and private lessons in addition to holding summer sessions in fingerstyle guitar as part of the MacEwan Music summer jazz workshop. One of my final teaching engagements in Edmonton was at the Alberta College Conservatory of Music fall music festival of 2011 where I stood as the Adjudicator of Classical Guitar. Since moving back to Swift Current in 2012, I have operated a busy private instruction studio that currently serves more than 25 students. In addition to private guitar lessons, I have also worked with the Swift Current Comprehensive High School music program as a coach for their guitar and bass students and have acted as a mentor performer with high school jazz combos as a bass player. I also offer a free annual introduction to guitar workshop at the Swift Current Library as part of the Canadian Federation of Music Teachers' "Canada Music Week" celebrations in November.
Professional Performance Experience
Beginning while I was a student at MacEwan, I played in Jazz and Rock bands and worked as a session musician in Edmonton. After playing in chamber music ensembles at University, I formed the Rosette Guitar Duo with Kevin Marsh in 2001-performing our own original compositions alongside Classical repertoire. The Rosette Duo released 4 recordings with regular rotation on National CBC Radio, toured Western Canada 2 times, performed at a special CBC Radio broadcast performance at Edmonton's Winspear Centre for Music, and have played hundreds of professional-level concerts in and around Edmonton. The Rosette Duo have performed at Folk and Jazz festivals in BC and Alberta including performances for the Swift Current Allied Arts Council, for the Blenders series at the R.C. Dahl Centre, at the Medicine Hat Jazz Festival, at the Kispiox Music Festival, and at the Jasper in January music festival.
I also have a singer-songwriter streak and create original songs inspired by the beauty and history of Canada's National Parks under the alias "McCoy Simonson". I have written albums dedicated to Jasper National Park and Elk Island National Park and now, since I'm in the neighborhood, my next project is Grasslands National Park.
Since moving back to Swift Current, I have been a regular contributor to the local arts and music scene, providing support music ranging from childrens singalongs at the Lyric theatre, to performing in a jazz combo, to free form improvisation in support of abstract painting exhibits at the Art Gallery of Swift Current, to providing ambient classical guitar music for His Royal Highness Prince Edward's 2014 visit and for the Western Premiers at the New West Summit in Regina.
The summer of 2015 kindled an interest in learning the Renaissance Lute and the Guqin, which is a type of Chinese zither instrument. These two instruments stand alongside the Banjo as instruments that I play just for the love of playing!
In addition to acting as a professional teacher and performer for hire in Swift Current and area, I also contribute on a volunteer basis to the community. My professional association, the Registered Music Teachers of Swift Current, of which I am the acting President, offers performance opportunities for youth and scholarships for a number of music related organizations in town. Another interest of mine is Taijiquan and I am a member of the Swift Current Tai Chi association which is dedicated to providing healthy activities for all ages in the community through practicing this beneficial martial art.
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