Wednesdays at 8:00 PM
Many in the congregation share a love of jazz, especially our minister and our director of music. Vancouver is blessed with a rich pool of amazing talent in its jazz musicians, complemented by musicians on tour coming through town. Churches are looking to offer an alternative time and form of worship in which people can be nourished by the grace of Jesus Christ to flourish. And Brentwood has a warm ambiance and amazing acoustics for this kind of music. So, we started to do Jazz Evensongs on Wednesday evenings at 8:00PM in 2013.
The evening is mostly music – 7 pieces in all. There are prayers inspired by the Iona Community tradition of Trinitarian thinking about the blessings of God that flow to us moment by moment in the most ordinary of things.
We invite you to put some money into the ‘Thanks Bucket’ (it’s a tradition we borrowed from New Orleans street bands and jazz clubs) that is passed around during the service in support of the musicians.
Below is a list of the artists coming in the next few months.
Jazz Evensong Testimonials
I felt so welcome at Brentwood’s Jazz Evensong! The congregation, and especially Brian Fraser, create a warm and inviting environment for artists to dig deep into the music and soar to new heights. They will find an attentive audience in this sacred space.
Juhli Conlinn, jazz vocalist
Brentwood Evensong is an important venue for west coast jazz musicians to make spiritually-inspired and emotionally-meaningful music as an ensemble for a listening audience. The Evensong series is expertly curated by a true jazz fan: the caring, considerate, knowledgeable and wise, Rev Dr Brian Fraser. Musicians love playing there. The reflections during the music-oriented service by Brian are relevant, inspirational, inclusive, and heart-warming. There is a good sound system and nice piano. The series attracts some of the city’s best.
Angela Verbrugge, jazz vocalist
I think the work being done at Brentwood Presbyterian Church is remarkable. Ross and I thoroughly enjoyed playing at Jazz Evensong. So many people remarked to me how much they enjoyed your honest, open, and genuine manner in leading the service. Very inspiring and thought-provoking indeed! We look forward to our return.
Marcia Meyer, pianist and teacher
Thank you, Brian Fraser and Brentwood Presbyterian Church, for a truly uplifting experience of music and prayer. The Brentwood Presbyterian Church is a rare crossroads of community, art and spirit.
Laura Crema, vocalist and composer
Brentwood Presbyterian has the warm welcome and beautiful setting
that brings out the best in musicians and audiences. Rev Dr Brian Fraser is a pleasure
to work with! We’re totally looking forward to our next evensong service there.
Holly Burke, composer, lyricist, flutist, vocalist, pianist
Quintessential has deeply appreciated the opportunity to play jazz in the wonderful, unique, soul-soothing atmosphere of the Sanctuary at Brentwood. Thanks to Brian Fraser and to Brentwood for their amazing support and encouragement for the arts and artists.
Gerry Teichrob, bass player with Quintessential Jazz
In a time when playing opportunities seem to be diminishing, it’s always a huge thrill when someone steps up who genuinely cares about the music. Jazz Evensong services at Brentwood provide a great venue for musicians of this city to perform in. It’s a venue that cares and that is rare these days.
Cory Weeds, saxophonist and jazz impresario
Wednesday night Jazz Evensongs at the intimate and acoustically-pleasing ‘Sanctuary’ in Brentwood Presbyterian Church offer musicians a wonderful space and opportunity to share their music as soul refreshment and thought-provoking contemplation.
Darlene Ketchum, vocalist, educator, and choral conductor
A beautiful, warm and intimate environment. Jazz Evensong is a joyful event to perform at, and the audiences are always very appreciative.
Miles Black, jazz artist
Jazz Evensong in the sanctuary at Brentwood Presbyterian Church is an oasis of great music, serving jazz aficionados, musicians, and all who feel music brings one closer to their spiritual self.
Gabriel Mark Hasselbach, award-winning multi-instrumentalist
The Brentwood Jazz Evensong provides us jazz musicians with an opportunity to expand the community of jazz in the greater Vancouver area and to connect with a very appreciative and kind audience. The amount of care that is put into maintaining this venue is evident and makes the concerts very enjoyable for the performer as well as the listener. There is an intimate connection that is shared between the audience and the performers at Brentwood because of the spiritual context of the performance as well as the physical set up of the venue. I believe that the spiritual implications of this performance are treated with a mentality that is accepting of anybody coming from any spiritual background. This venue provides an opportunity for people to share a musical experience with an awareness of its spiritual and communal implications.
Noah Franche-Nolan, jazz pianist
At Jazz Evensong held in the Sanctuary at Brentwood, there is a refreshing sense and expectation of spaciousness and rest – it’s as if the room itself is alive and breathes and is listening with the audience for each musician’s next note. As a musician, it is a privilege to have a venue that acoustically makes us feel connected to the audience and gives the audience a sense that the musicians are sitting in our midst. Music is of the Sacred and, in whatever form it communicates at the Sanctuary, it is quietly reflecting the Creator. Jazz Evensong provides a place for both the audience and the musicians to enjoy the echoes of God’s grace together.
Ron Kinders, saxophonist with the Six Degrees Band
Jazz Evensong has been a great place for me to start a new ensemble. Our first performance was at Brentwood Presbyterian Church and, since then, the trio has performed quite a few times at the church and other venues, including the Vancouver International Jazz Festival. The acoustics, the PA and the piano are all excellent. They allow the musicians to have absolute freedom when they are expressing themselves through their instruments or voices.
Sharon Minemoto, jazz pianist and educator
Playing at the Jazz Evensong…
Good for the Body
Good for the Soul….
Makes me feel Good!!!
Makes me feel Whole.
Billy Weeds, jazz guitarist
In 2009, after a dramatic encounter with Christ, I dedicated my life to the pursuit of his way. At the very beginning of my new life as a Christian, I met Rev Brian Fraser and the congregation at Brentwood. They have been a huge support on my journey. Playing music at Brentwood for the congregation as well as friends and family is a unique experience. It allows me to express the most important factor in my life, Christ, in the most appropriate setting for fellow Christians and non-Christians alike. Thank you, Brian, and thank you, Brentwood!!
Adam Cormier, jazz drummer
I have played several times at Jazz Evensong. It is a lovely space – warm and inviting – where the Spirit can work its wonders. I am so thankful that the acoustics are so great, enhanced by a good PA system and beautiful piano. But the best thing is the people – especially Brian and Janik. They treat the musicians and audience alike so well – many people have commented on that to me. That makes it easy to want to bring my following out there.
LJ Mounteney, singer and educator
As a first-time performer at Brentwood Presbyterian Church’s Jazz Evensong, I was struck by the warm, receptive nature of the service and the elegance of the space itself. As a Native singer/songwriter with strong spiritual principles from my own culture, I usually approach other religious services with care. Rev Brian Fraser knocked my socks off. He used inclusive language, loving references and was himself a loving leader. Performing jazz within that program was not only rewarding, but provided a musical challenge to me. How could I find the right jazz songs with simpatico themes from my own repertoire? Well, I was short one song, so I had to write it! I would be
honoured and thrilled to return and share in that loving, spiritual environment again.
Andrea Menard, singer, actor, and educator
What I love so much about singing at Jazz Evensong are the wonderful acoustics in a small intimate church that hosts live jazz every week, but also being in the presence of Brian Fraser. He really “gets it” and understands the improvisational element to jazz which makes us musicians feel that it’s more than just a performance – that I am part of his community of jazz in the church.
Jaclyn Guillou, singer and songwriter
Jazz Evensong at Brentwood Presbyterian not only features world-class Canadian musicians but also an intimate and acoustically balanced concert venue. It is an invaluable arts outreach tool to the local community of Burnaby as well as BC’s jazz community. Every performance I’ve had there has been exceptional and warmly received.” –
Eli Bennett, 35-time-award-winning jazz saxophonist
Participating in the Evensong has been a fabulous event for us – all participants had the opportunity to share their generosity – spiritually, creatively and financially. As well it created another opportunity for fellowship, friendship and enjoyment – our experience suggests the event brings out the best in all of us. Can’t wait to come back again.
Roy Gould, guitarist in Original Blend
It was a pleasure to perform at Jazz Evensong! The service is such a wonderful way to share music with an attentive audience and engage with the community. The sanctuary also provides a rare intimate atmosphere and beautiful acoustic environment that so many musicians strive to find. We certainly hope to have the chance to perform again soon.
Allison Au, Juno-Award-winning saxophonist
I love playing music and I love going to church. The devotional setting of Brentwood Presbyterian Church is an inviting doorway for devotional music.
Mike Bjella, saxophonist and composer
Jazz Evensong at Brentwood is an inspiring place to present your best gift of music. Rev. Dr. Brian Fraser is always encouraging and eager to hear what you will say and play, and the space and equipment are first class!
Doe Bender, jazz vocalist and pianist
Jazz Evensong is an oasis of quiet reflection and great jazz in the middle of your week. Brian’s homily is always thought provoking and the music provided by Vancouver’s finest jazz musicians never fails to inspire.
Peter Prentice, host of The Jazz Spectrum on CJSF Radio
Musicians are happiest when they are performing – sharing their talents with an audience. Performing at Jazz Evensong is not just another “ordinary gig” however; the music is working for a greater purpose – it is serving the church’s mission. Since the focus is not just on the individual participants, the act of participating frees us from ourselves and enables creativity. Although Bach was not a “jazz musician” he improvised in church (brilliantly) for the glory of God. Jazz music serves the church brilliantly too, through the act of improvisation. I wonder if Bach’s music would have been so divinely inspired if he did not have a church gig?
Linda Szentes, jazz singer
The combination of music and the spoken word can provide an uplifting experience for people from all walks of life. Jazz Evensong occurs in an acoustically attractive space where live music, storytelling and reflection flow together in a harmonious blend of body, mind and soul.
Maria Ho, Jazz vocalist, recording Artist, performer and band Leader
In January 2015, I was booking tour dates for 2016. I was considering venues in Vancouver, when a fellow artist suggested that I approach The Sanctuary in Brentwood. In March 2016, I subsequently appeared at a Jazz Evensong. I love the intimate ambiance of The Sanctuary. The excellent acoustics, light and positive vibrations rendered my show an especially poignant experience. Performing at The Sanctuary was a genuine highlight of my career. Dr. Brian Fraser, Executive Director of The Sanctuary, has an impressive grasp of jazz and improvisation. He is a wonderful curator and passionate advocate for the arts. As touring artists, my duo was warmly welcomed by Brian and his wife Jill. The Sanctuary in Brentwood is a first-class, performance space. Brian Fraser is to be commended for initiating and sustaining an evolving outlet for jazz musicians, local and beyond.
Adele M Wilding, jazz vocalist and composer
We look forward to the Wednesday Jazz Evensongs that we can attend. Thank you so much for organizing them. They are a real blessing to us.
Les and Sandy McKinnon
Possibly the best kept secret in Burnaby: Jazz Evensong is every jazz lovers opportunity to hear some of the Lower Mainland’s best musicians in the comfy, acoustically friendly sanctuary of Brentwood Presbyterian every Wednesday evening.
I have had the pleasure of attending the Jazz Evensong evenings, sadly only a few times. I love how Brian has turned Brentwood into this great venue for artists to share their amazing talents. In addition, there is the spiritual inspiration with which the musicians and Brian grace the evening. Jazz Evensong is an evening that nourishes the ear, heart and soul. A true gift – thank you.
Thanks, Brentwood and Brian, for supporting musicians and for being such an amazing jazz thinker and messenger.
Nancy Newman, jazz vocalist and composer
I sincerely enjoy playing at the Vespers evening – the acoustics are wonderful, the audience is warm and inviting, and the sermons are uplifting and inspiring. I look forward to many more opportunities to play for the church’s vibrant community.
Jason de Couto, jazz keyboardist and composer
I have had the pleasure of sharing songs at a growing number of jazz worship services in the Vancouver area, both with my swing ensemble and my trio focused on original compositions. I find these experiences so enjoyable, balancing the perfect mix of song and spirit. Brentwood Presbyterian is a gorgeous church with fine acoustics. Jazz Evensong there gives everyone a wonderful opportunity to meditate in sacred space together, filling a great need to nurture community and honour our local talent.
Deanna Knight, jazz vocalist and composer
Jazz evensong at Brentwood Presbyterian Church really is the best little jazz club in Burnaby. The ambiance is warm and welcoming. The acoustics are crystal clear. The audiences are lively and appreciative. The whole service is a nourishing blend of music, prayer and reflection. I was privileged to do a tribute to Dame Vera Lynn and her music that spread love and laughter during the dark days of WW2. The whole experience was inspiring and I look forward to my next gig there.
Gillian Campbell, inductee of the BC Entertainment Hall of Fame
Brian is a great speaker. His topics are fun and music related. Audiences come to hear music with a message. Great fun.
Bill Costin, jazz pianist, musical director and composer
The Jazz Evensong services at Brentwood Presbyterian Church, along with Brian Fraser’s deep love of jazz music, allows the musicians who perform there an intimate, quiet and inviting place to blend music and spirituality. Brian is a most thoughtful speaker who always gives the jazz community of musicians great respect and freedom. I always look forward to any chance I get to play there.
Buff Allen, drummer, percussionist and teacher