Lorna Bjorklund

Lorna Bjorklund

SPO volunteer: Music teacher Lorna Bjorklund

The Sooke Philharmonic Orchestra Society is highlighting its volunteers

Sometimes a sad event sparks a good thing, and that is what happened in Lorna’s Bjorklund’s young life at eight years old. Her grandfather passed away, but his piano was left to her parents. The instrument fascinated her, and she would race home from school just to think up new pieces to play.

Once she was able to have piano lessons, she surprised everyone including her Estonian teacher, to cover three grades in one year.

Playing in competitions truly inspired Lorna to press on further in order to complete her ARCT diploma at 17 years old, as well as the LTCL in England at 19 years of age with hopes of becoming a concert pianist.

Sometimes hopes have to redirect and for Lorna, life took twists and turns so that she chose to return to the University of Saskatchewan to complete her teaching degree. She has lived in several areas of the world including Ottawa, Montreal, Brazil, London (where she was the pianist for the ballet company), Guyana and the Cayman Islands before returning to Victoria.

But with her father being in Sooke and Lorna intending to have advanced lessons with Robert Holliston of the Victoria Conservatory of Music, Sooke became her home.

Her current position as the music teacher at Journey middle school is an amazing gift to the Sooke community as Lorna has developed music programmes to initiate youth bands, youth orchestras and chamber ensembles.

Her work has catapulted these youth to the National Music Competitions in Richmond, B.C. in May, because the school’s young musicians have already won many awards on Vancouver Island.

In fact, Lorna is currently directing several fundraising events to help with the costs of getting the Sooke youth to this competition. Donations made to the Journey middle school are matched by the Sooke Philharmonic Society.