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Final preparations for Parkland music festival

Excitement building for music festival, showcasing talents of many youth in the Preeceville and surrounding areas.
Macey Scheller played the flute at the final performance at the Parkland Music Festival held in Preeceville. (file Photo)

PREECEVILLE - The final countdown is happening for the Parkland Music Festival which will take place in Preeceville and Sturgis from April 15 to April 17 with a final awards concert on Sunday, April 21.

The local festival committee has been working for many months in preparation. There has been no local festival since 2019, so the committee is excited to have 111 entries for the festival. Students from Preeceville, Sturgis, Norquay, Canora, Invermay and Yorkton will participate, stated Miles Russell, committee member.

There are 100 entries in piano and speech arts which take place at Trinity United Church in Preeceville. There are five sessions of adjudication, on Monday, April 15 and two sessions on Tuesday, April 16. The public is also encouraged to attend to enjoy the performances and support the students. Performers will be given feedback and encouragement from the adjudicators about their performance, as well as being congratulated for all the preparation that goes into their performance.

The students participating in the piano category range in age from 6 to 14. Some will be participating for the first time and others have entered many times. The local festival committee works hard to find volunteers to work at the door where admission of $3 for an adult per session or $10 for the week plus a program are sold. There are also adjudicator assistants who work on filling out certificates and providing the written materials adjudicators need to do their work. And of course, there is always “coffee and goodies” for break times each day and volunteers are needed to work in the kitchen as well as provide the “goodies.”

Each festival includes a category for speech arts including classrooms. This year,  the Grades 3 and 4 class from Sturgis Composite is entering in vocal arts and rhythm categories.

On April 17, band is highlighted with Good Spirit School Division senior and junior bands entering two pieces each for adjudication. Band adjudicators listen, offer feedback, often helping the bands try new ways of interpreting and performing portions of their presentations. The public is always welcome to watch the performances which take place at Sturgis Composite School gym on April 17.

Several band students are entering the festival in individual and ensemble presentations, which take place at Grace United Church in Sturgis on April 17.

“After the several days of presentations and enjoying the hard work each student has put into their performance, the local music festival committee works with the adjudicators to assign scholarships to be presented at the final concert on April 21 at Trinity United Church in Preeceville,” said Miles Russell.

The music festival could not happen without the support of many local individuals, businesses, community groups and church organizations along with the provincial sponsors of the Music Festival. Some organizations in the local area donate time and “in kind” help which is always appreciated such as photocopying programs, paper cups for performances amongst other things. As well as 44 individuals and groups who have donated money for scholarships and general festival expenses. $1,350 of the money donated is being allocated to many of the participants in the form of monetary scholarships. There are 10 medals for recognition of musical achievement that will be given out, all of which are decided and assigned by the adjudicators.

“The presentations will be made during the final awards concert which will include approximately 20 of the performers from the week, to not only honour them, but to give the audience a most enjoyable sampling of the young artists who have performed during the week,” concluded Russell.