top of page

About Us

Canto Sentimento Strings was founded in 2006 as the need for string music for formal events grew in the Ottawa. Since then Canto Sentimento has expanded to a formal String Quartet participating in several Music Festivals and events in the Ottawa are such as "Music Fest", the Tulip Festival at "Music and Beyond", Noon hour Concerts at "Doors Open at Southmister" and  have had a successful concert series "Tea with Series" at Meridian Theater.


 All of our musicians have been performing for many years, playing in various orchestras and string ensembles in the Ottawa area and around the world. 

Jolani Domitrovits, Founder


Jolani began her musical studies on piano and voice at a young age, and then later went on to study at Canterbury High School for the Arts in Ottawa where she continued to pursue her music studies on the violin. After high school, she finished three years in a violin performance program and two years in viola performance, finishing her Bachelor of Music degree, Magna Cum Laude, at the University of Ottawa in 2012. In 2014, Jolani obtained her Masters of Music degree in Viola Performance at the University of Ottawa under the tutelage of Rennie Regehr. She is currently a student in the Artist Diploma program at the Glenn Gould School in Toronto where she studies with Steven Dann. She is also a founding member of the musical group Canto Sentimento Strings where she has been playing since 2006, and has played in the Ottawa Symphony Orchestra since 2011. She has also performed with the Ottawa Chamber Orchestra, the National Youth Orchestra of Canada and Orchestre francophonie du Canada.

Gabriela Ruiz Rueda Arambula, Cellist


Gabriela Ruiz is a musician who specializes in Cello Performance. Originating from Ensenada, Mexico, she started studying cello in 1992, achieving a Bachelor’s in 2008 at Universidad Autonoma de Baja California. In 2010, she came to Canada to pursue a Master’s Degree in Cello Performance at the University of Ottawa, studying under Paul Marleyn. Following her Masters, she completed a post-graduate Orchestral Certificate Diploma at the University of Ottawa, studying under Paul Marleyn and David Curie.

For the past ten years she has been an active member in the Ottawa music community. She has performed with her string quartet, Canto Sentimento, in the Centrepoint Tea Series since 2012; Video Games Live in 2015 at the NAC; performed as cellist in 2017’s La Machine; the Brahms’ Piano Quintet; and the Brandenburg Concertos in 2018-2019 as part of Southminster’s Noon Concert Series. She also arranges and performs with her string quartet, Canto Sentimento, all around the Ottawa Valley.

When she is not performing, Gabriela is managing her private studio, as well as teaching with several music schools in the Ottawa area.


Adam Nelson, Violinist


Adam Nelson received his Bachelor of Music as well as his Suzuki Teaching Certification from Wilfrid Laurier University. He then went on to earn his Masters of Music Performance degree and Orchestral Studies Certificate from the University of Ottawa. While a student, he studied under such esteemed violinists as Jerzy Kaplanek, David Stewart, Jonathan Crow and David Zafer. Adam is an experienced and versatile teacher who enjoys teaching all ages, levels and abilities from absolute beginner to emerging performer. He has taught at many different schools and camps, such as Kincardine Summer Music Festival, the National Music Camp of Canada, and the Summer Music Galway camp in Galway, Ireland. In addition to teaching, Adams musical passions include playing in orchestras ranging from the Ottawa Symphony Orchestra as associate concertmaster, to Orchestre Francophonique du Canada and the National Academy Orchestra.


Olivier Philippe-August, Violist

Graduated in April 2014 with a Master degree in Music Performance Arts at the University of Ottawa under the direction of Viola teacher Rennie Regehr, Olivier Michel Philippe-Auguste is a young talented classical violist player who enjoys all types of music. He is now a member of the Ottawa Symphonic Orchestra (OSO), and has played with many other orchestras such as the Kingston Symphony, and the Gatineau Symphony. He is also a violin and viola teacher in the Ottawa region. In addition he plays in various small ensembles, and has been given recitals whenever the opportunity presents itself.


Oleg Chelpanov, Violinist

An accomplished orchestral and chamber musician, violinist Oleg Chelpanov earned his Doctoral degree from the Saint Petersburg (Russia) State Conservatory in 2002 and continued his studies at the University of Minnesota, under the tutelage of Sally O'Reilly. While residing in Minneapolis, Mr. Chelpanov performed numerous solo and chamber music recitals and played frequently in both the Minnesota Orchestra and the Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra. In 2006, he won a permanent position with the world-renowned Saint Petersburg (former Leningrad) Philharmonic Orchestra, and spent the following three years performing as a member of the orchestra in the finest venues across Europe and Asia. Currently based in Gatineau, QC, Mr. Chelpanov maintains a teaching studio and appears regularly with the National Arts Centre, Houston Symphony, Houston Grand Opera, and Minnesota orchestras.

Guest Musicians
Sonya Sweeney, Pianist

Sonya Sweeney is a pianist and vocal artist based in Ottawa particularly recognized for her musical versatility and sensitivity. She has been a mainstay performer in Ottawa for over a decade, and performs regularly as a collaborative pianist, often for theUniversity of Ottawa viola studio. In addition, Sonya dedicates her time to teaching students in voice, piano and theory. Her passion is sharing the joy of music in performance and passing on her knowledge to others through teaching.

bottom of page