Pach, Arlene

Arlene (Alnora) Pach (b Nimmons). Pianist, teacher, b Kamloops, BC, 26 May 1928, d Fredericton, 2 Mar 2000; ATCM 1945; BA philosophy (British Columbia) 1949, honorary LL D (Saint Thomas) 1988, honorary D LITT (New Brunswick) 1993. A sister of Phil Nimmons, she studied with Boris Roubakine at the TCM. After her 1947 debut with the Vancouver Junior Symphony and CBC Vancouver recitals 1948-9, she performed extensively in Toronto and throughout Ontario 1951-5 and premiered works by Harry Freedman, Kenneth Peacock, and Phil Nimmons. Her early chamber music activity included appearances with flautist Nicholas Fiore, violinist Steven Staryk, and the Summerhill Woodwind Quintet. Married in 1954 to violinist Joseph Pach, she founded with him the Duo Pach in 1960. The Duo Pach received a Canada Council fellowship 1961 and made their London and BBC debuts and performed in Europe. They made several tours in Canada and performed on CBC radio and television, as well as at Expo 67. Appointed a resident artist of the University of New Brunswick in 1964, Pach was pianist with the Brunswick String Quartet in 1972 when it performed as a piano quartet, and was co-founder and artistic director 1966-83 of the annual University of New Brunswick Chamber Music and All That Jazz Festival.

Pach taught at the University of New Brunswick, the Banff SFA, and the Institute de Ribaupierre (Lausanne, Switzerland). An experienced lecturer, she also appeared on the CBC as music critic and commentator, and was columnist for the Vancouver Daily Province. Pach was vice-president 1980-8 of the Canadian Music Council. She and her husband remained at the University of New Brunswick as resident musicians until 1993; they continued to record, and to perform on CBC radio and in concert through the 1990s. The Vancouver Sun has called the Duo Pach "a splendid and well-matched team." The RCM offers the Arlene Nimmons Pach Endowment Fund.

See also Joseph Pach; and discographies for Joseph Pach, the Brunswick String Quartet.