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Festival Fanfare: Festival opens Monday at City Kinsmen Band Hall

Battlefords Kiwanis Music Festival April 15 to 27.
The 2024 annual Battlefords Kiwanis Music Festival opens Monday, April 15 at 9 a.m. at the North Battleford City Kinsmen Band Hall.

THE BATTLEFORDS — The 2024 annual Battlefords Kiwanis Music Festival opens Monday, April 15 at 9 a.m. at the North Battleford City Kinsmen Band Hall (corner of 18th Avenue and 104th Street) with 10 years and under small ensembles. The morning will continue with small ensembles and duets.

Afternoon classes, starting 12:45 p.m., feature brass instrument soloists and duets. The evening, starting at 6:30 p.m., features the North Battleford City Kinsmen Bands youth and adult bands. Tuesday will continue at the Band Hall with school ensembles and young soloists. Band classes run through Friday, April 19. Strings classes are also during this week at the Band Hall Wednesday, April 17 at 7 p.m.

The adjudicator for the week is Mark Tse. Dr. Tse is an assistant professor of Instrumental Music Education at the University of Saskatchewan. He conducts the University Symphony Orchestra and is an instructor of conducting, instrumental music teaching in secondary schools, and guitar pedagogy.

Vocal classes begin at 9 a.m. Monday, April 22 in the Third Avenue United Church’s Logie Hall (corner of 13th Avenue and 102nd Street) with spoken word classes. The afternoon continues at 1 p.m. in the church’s sanctuary beginning with a Canadian repertoire soloist in the nine years and under category, Cecily Pfeifer performing “Spring is Singing in the Garden” by W.H. Anderson. Following her performance are additional Canadian repertoire classes for various ages along with other solo vocal classes including sacred repertoire.

Continuing in the sanctuary at 7 p.m., are recital solo pieces. Vocal classes continue through Wednesday, April 24. For those of you who look forward to musical theatre classes, mark your calendars for Tuesday, April 23 starting 7 p.m. in Logie Hall as well as Wednesday April 24 starting 1 p.m. Guest vocal adjudicator, Ron de Jager, is a native of Nova Scotia and a teacher at Briercrest College.

Dovetailing the completion of vocal classes on Wednesday, April 24, are piano classes which open in Logie Hall at 7 p.m. with Cedric Prince's rendition of “O Canada” in the Canadian National Anthem Class for 14 years and under. This performance is followed by recital pieces and Canadian repertoire. Piano classes run through the afternoon of Saturday, April 27. Adjudicator Sharon Rodney was born and raised in Yorkton. She moved to Martensville in 2018 where she established a piano studio.

The gala awards, being held at the Dekker Centre, is Tuesday, April 30 at 7 pm. Performances at the gala are highlights from the festival chosen by the adjudicators. Tickets are $10 for seniors and $15 for adults. Children under 18 years of age are free. Donors, sponsors, performers and volunteers are also free. Tickets for the gala may be purchased through the Dekker Centre or at the door that night.

In way of reminders for festival participants, be on time and hand in your music (with the first bar of each line numbered) to the session secretary before the session starts. Note that practicing in festival halls during the festival week is not permitted, that any questions or concerns should be directed to committee members as the adjudicator should not be approached, that no unprogrammed entries will be accepted and that use of copyrighted photocopied music is illegal unless accompanied by a letter of permission. When viewing performances, common courtesies include entering or exiting the hall between performances, turning off electronic devices while in the festival venue and that photographs or videos cannot be taken in the festival hall. Be sure to celebrate the accomplishments of each performer with congratulations always in order.

“A lot of people influenced me as I was learning, but probably Bing Crosby was the most influential because I would hear his Christmas albums, which my parents played a lot.” — Gordon Lightfoot (1938-2023)