The Howe Sound Performing Arts Association is presenting a first in the Sea to Sky corridor. Local vocalists and musicians will have the opportunity to show their stuff at an adjudicated music festival this week.
"A lot of students here study privately. They take piano lessons or private voice, but then what can they do with this?" says festival co-ordinator Colleen Koop.
"With dance you can take dance exams. With piano you can take RCM exams. But this is an opportunity where you actually have an adjudicator critique your performance right then and there. Its a real stepping stone in the students education."
Koop says she and several teachers in the corridor have grown up with a background of such festivals. She says all agree theres a need to introduce this learning tool to local young musicians.
All the performers will be adjudicated by Millie and Ed Hildebrand. The husband and wife team from Manitoba has a long list of credentials. Millie has appeared as soloist and chorus member in stage and opera productions with Manitoba Opera, Winnipeg Mennonite Theatre, Prairie Performances, the Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra, Symphony Chorale, Canzone and the Oregon Bach Festival Chorus. Ed is a graduate of the universities of Windsor and Western Ontario. Hes currently serving as the interim conductor of the Winnipeg Philharmonic Choir. Ed also just completed his 20th year in the music department at the Steinbach Regional Secondary School, where he directs the four choirs of the choral department, one of the jazz bands and a theatrical production mounted by the music department each year.
The duo will be responsible for adjudicating 85 students and 125 entries in the categories of choral, vocal and piano. Students are grouped in classes according to the levels of the Royal Conservatory of Music. The public is welcome to attend all the sessions and will be privy to the individual critiques. Classes are scheduled for various locations in Whistler and Squamish March 27-30. At the end of the week, the Hildebrands will select outstanding performers to take part in a gala concert Friday evening, March 30, at Howe Sound Secondary.
For full schedule details call 898-5981 or go online at www.hspaa.org. Festival Visitor Passes may be purchased at the door, $2 for an individual class or $5 for all classes.
HOWE SOUND MUSIC FESTIVAL SCHEDULE
Tuesday, March 27
Howe Sound Secondary School Squamish
12:30 pm CLASS: 4103 Band - Experienced middle & junior secondary ensemble
3:15 pm CLASS: 4104 Band - Junior - senior secondary ensembles
6:00 pm CLASS: 2175 Level 7-Piano Solo, Canadian Composers