It's going to be cello-mania on June 18 — at noon precisely — as cellos infiltrate the community. It's a "Cello Intervention" announcing the opening of the second International Cello Festival of Canada.

Fifty-two cellists will be performing in 24 venues, places like the Millennium Library, Manitoba Legislature, Parlour Coffee, Thom Bargen Coffee & Tea, Stella's Cafe & Bakery (three locations), St. Boniface Hospital Atrium, Plug In Institute of Contemporary Art, Boon Burger and more. There will even be "interventions" in Brandon, Morden and Onanole.

Cellist on street wearing sneakers

Cello recitals will be popping up all across Manitoba on June 18 at noon. (Luckygirl Photography)

"Every single venue, everybody has been 100 per cent enthusiastic, right from the get-go and has been supportive and excited about the idea," said Brandon cellist Leanne Zacharias who spearheaded the event.

Three years ago, artistic director Paul Marleyn invited Zacharias to direct the opening event of the first Cello Festival. For that occasion she galvanized as many cellists as possible to perform together in Old Market Square. 

"When Paul asked me once again to put on something as the kick-off for this year's festival I wanted to do something that reached more locations. So it was in brainstorming that that I came up with the idea of -- instead of having the audience coming to one place, putting the cellists out in the places where the audiences already are," she said.

Zacharias was particularly pleased to hear from Community Minister Lynda Trono of West Broadway Community Church which runs a soup kitchen at lunchtime. 

"She wrote me an email out of the blue and asked me if I would consider it. She was very eloquent, it was very simple, but she just said this would be an audience who would never be able to take in a festival like this, although it sounds wonderful, so she wondered if we would bring it to them," said Zacharias.

Performers include Zacharias herself, Paul Marleyn, Desiree Abbey and Andrea Bell with some of their students, and young performers like Ariel Carrabré and Zander Scott.

The province-wide Cello Intervention takes place around Manitoba on June 18 at noon, launching the five-day International Cello Festival of Canada.