The Zara Strings

"The Zara Strings" is Edwin's chamber music group based around the husband and wife team of Flaviu and Loredana Zanca. He formed this chamber music orchestra to perform the arrangements for his 2012 album “Songs of Love and Marriage” in 2012, and the same team forms the basis of the string section featured on his 2014 release “Forever Laughter,” his 2016 CD “The Inside Track,” and his upcoming albums “Songs for Canada” (2017) and “Romance” (2018

Flaviu started violin when he was seven, and today he holds Bachelor's and Master's degrees in violin performance from the “Gheorghe Dima” Music Academy, Romania. With professional experience in many orchestras, (including Sinfonia de Lanaudiere, the Sherbrooke Symphony Orchestra, and the Thunder Bay Symphony Orchestra) he is outstanding as a soloist, orchestral player, chamber musician and section leader.

Loredana began her cello studies at age eight. Since then, she has performed extensively as a soloist, as an orchestral and chamber player. Loredana also holds Bachelor’s and Master’s degrees in cello and appeared as soloist with the “Transilania” State Philharmonic, “Dinu Lipatti” State Philharmonic, and Sibiu State Philharmonic. She won the audition for Principal Cello with the “Dinu Lipatti” Philharmonic just before coming to Canada. 

Stephanie Caplette is the second violin in the version of the Zara Strings featured on “Songs of Love and Marriage.” Her playing has a lovely warm sound and presence. At this date she is the leader of the 2nd violin section of the Thunder Bay Symphony Orchestra.


Violist on “Songs of Love and Marriage,” Xavier Lepage-Brault is also a consummate professional of the first-rank and currently works in Les Petits Violons and under Yannick Nézet-Séguin in the Orchestre Métropolitain of Montreal.

Performing second violin on Orion and the Zara Strings’ 2014 Place des Arts concert and featured on the quintet’s upcoming release “The Inside Track” (due out in 2015), Veronica Ungureanu began piano lessons at four, and violin lessons two years later. Developing a passion for traditional Romanian music, she began studying the works of Ciprian Porumbescu. Later enrolled in the University of Montreal, she began teaching in the Eleonara Turovsky class, and shortly after joining the New Generation Orchestra in 2010, she became part of the Turovsky Quartet, named in honour of the late maestro. Today she has finished her Masters in violin performance and is active in the Bolero Trio as well as in the Zara Strings.

Also featured on “The Inside Track”, Montreal based violist Lilian Belknap maintains an active and versatilecareer, ranging from classical, popular and world music performance, to contemporary avant-garde composition, to education and advocacy for the arts. She holds degrees from the Schulich School of Music at McGill University as well as from the Cleveland Institute of Music.

The newest member of the ensemble, flautist / bassoonist Linda Rand manages several orchestras, and has performed in many professional ensembles locally and around the world. She has degrees from McGill University and the Université de Montréal, and her generous nature has helped many musicians find work in the local classical music scene.