Second Horn (retired)

Elizabeth Simpson

Last updated: June 7, 2024

Retired since 2023 from her position as Second Horn of the NAC Orchestra, Elizabeth always enjoyed being a part of this vanguard orchestra. She has played the horn in many performances with them since 1986 and officially became the Second horn player in the NAC Orchestra in 2011.

Elizabeth studied music at the University of Ottawa and later got a master's degree in music performance from Indiana University. She learned from some well-known musicians, including Daniel Gress, Philip Farkas, Meir Rimon, Michael Hatfield, and Arnold Jacobs. While studying music, Elizabeth received the Ottawa Music Festival Senior Scholarship in 1983 and the NAC Orchestra Bursary in 1984.

Elizabeth was one of the musicians who started the Bel Canto Wind Quintet, a group that played music together for eleven years in Ottawa. They went on tours in Ontario and Quebec. The group was heard often on the radio, including CBC Radio and Radio Canada, and performed as part of the Ottawa International Chamber Music Festival.

Elizabeth is also a member of the Capital Brass Works. This group has thirteen members who play brass and percussion instruments. They’ve organized their own concert series in Ottawa, gone on tours in Ontario, and made three CDs.

Elizabeth enjoys teaching music, and has taught at several places in Ottawa, including the University of Ottawa, Ottawa Youth Orchestra Academy, and Canterbury School of the Arts.

In 2013, Elizabeth helped create the NAC's Music Circle. This is a music program for children, teens, and adults who have autism, developmental disabilities, or are sensitive to light, noise, or crowds. Audience members learn about orchestra instruments and enjoy live music through workshops and concerts that are designed to be comfortable for everyone.

Elizabeth has also worked with students at the OCDSB, CHEO, and the Lotus Centre, as well as with adults in the LIFE programs. She loves sharing her passion for music with others.

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