Mak­ing mu­sic in Car­bon­ear


Or­ga­niz­ers of the 43rd Car­bon­ear and area Ki­wa­nis Mu­sic Fes­ti­val have some 750 rea­sons to be feel­ing good about this year’s mu­si­cal ex­trav­a­ganza.

That’s how many en­tries have reg­is­tered for this year’s com­pe­ti­tion, which runs from March 9-15 at four venues in Car­bon­ear (see re­lated fact box for com­plete de­tails). Grand con­certs are also sched­uled for March 19, 20 and 21.

In all, that rep­re­sents some 2,300 par­tic­i­pants, which is about 100 more than last year.

The up-tick in reg­is­tra­tion is — ex­cuse the choice of words — mu­sic to the ears of or­ga­niz­ers.

“Things are coming to­gether ex­cep­tion­ally well,” said Danny But­ton, pres­i­dent of this year’s fes­ti­val and pres­i­dent-elect of the Ki­wa­nis Club.

There’s a 14 per cent in­crease in reg­is­tra­tion in vo­cal cat­e­gories (choirs, mu­si­cal the­atre and in­di­vid­ual per­for­mance) this year, which is de­scribed by But­ton as “very pos­i­tive.”

As a re­sult, or­ga­niz­ers have been forced to in­crease the num­ber of ad­ju­di­ca­tors. Tra­di­tion­ally, three mu­si­cal ex­perts have been hired to as­sess the per­form­ers. That num­ber has now grown to four.

They in­clude Cather­ine Robert­son from the Univer­sity of Water­loo, re­tired mu­sic teacher Jac­inta Mackey Gra­ham of St. John’s, Su­san Gagnon, a long­time fac­ulty mem­ber with the Royal Con­ser­va­tory of Mu­sic in On­tario, and well-known voice teacher Linda Fletcher of Oakville, Ont.

Gra­ham will ad­ju­di­cate the choirs, while the three oth­ers will as­sess those com­pet­ing in in­stru­men­tal, pi­ano and vo­cal cat­e­gories.

But­ton cred­ited much of the growth to the en­thu­si­asm and pro­fes­sion­al­ism of mu­sic teach­ers in the re­gion. He made spe­cial men­tion of Anne Whe­lan (Car­bon­ear Col­le­giate), Robert Col­bourne (Cres­cent Col­le­giate, Blake­town), Tif­fany Smith (Bac­calieu Col­le­giate, Old Per­li­can) and Deanne De­lahunty (Amal­ga­mated Academy, Bay Roberts).

All four have com­peted at the fes­ti­val as young per­form­ers, and now sup­port the fes­ti­val by en­cour­ag­ing and men­tor­ing a new gen­er­a­tion of singers and mu­si­cians.

Mean­while, But­ton said plans for the fes­ti­val are coming to­gether smoothly, thanks largely to the roughly 60 vol­un­teers who lend their tal­ents and time, and the busi­ness com­mu­nity who con­trib­ute so gen­er­ously to the 80 awards and schol­ar­ships that are up for grabs, val­ued at some $8,000.

The fes­ti­val has also devel­oped a rep­u­ta­tion for its en­thu­si­as­tic au­di­ences, and But­ton hopes that tra­di­tion will con­tinue this year.

“Ad­ju­di­ca­tors have of­ten com­mented about the great com­mu­nity sup­port for the fes­ti­val,” said But­ton.

It costs roughly $40,000 in to­tal to or­ga­nize and run the fes­ti­val, But­ton added, and ev­ery dime is worth­while.

“It gives chil­dren an op­por­tu­nity to par­tic­i­pate as well to be be ad­ju­di­cated and take part in the so­cial as­pect of the fes­ti­val,” But­ton stated. “So­cially, it helps chil­dren to un­der­stand that they’re able to com­pete and have fun do­ing it.”


Submitted photo

The Ice An­gels of the Con­cep­tion Bay North Skat­ing Club cap­tured the ele­men­tary syn­chro­nized ti­tle at the 2013 Skate NL Syn­chro­nized Skat­ing Cham­pi­onships on Feb. 15-16 in Tor­bay. The team of of nine- to 12-year-olds from the Bay Roberts and Har­bour Grace ar­eas edged out six other teams for the pro­vin­cial crown. Mem­bers of the team are: front (l-r) - Sarah Daw­son, Ethan Par­sons, Bri­anna Rus­sell, Emily Craig, Rachel Drover, Ju­lia Keefe, Rakel Bishop and He­lena Churchill; back – coach Melissa Saun­ders, Emily Daw­son, Lexie Smith, Natalie Mercer, Han­nah Green, Katie Nasci­mento, Lindsay Porter, Chelsey Crane, Ha­ley Dawe and as­sis­tant coach Syd­ney Nasci­mento. For story and more pho­tos, see Page A7.

Re­becca Sel­lars

Com­pass file photo by Terry Roberts

Re­becca Sel­lars of Car­bon­ear was des­ig­nated as the “Face of the Fes­ti­val” by The Com­pass dur­ing the 2012 Car­bon­ear Re­gional Mu­sic Fes­ti­val. She stole the show at one of three grand con­certs and was promi­nently spot­lighted on our front page. Who will earn that dis­tinc­tion this year? That re­mains to be seen. The 2013 fes­ti­val runs from March 9-15, with grand con­certs sched­uled for March 19, 20 and 21.

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