As an adjudicator for a wide variety of piano, vocal and string chamber music classes in Music Festivals in Canada and the United States for almost 25 years, I have been in places as geographically diverse as Fort McMurray, Toronto, Powell River, B.C., and many musical communities between. Every spring I travel throughout Canada encouraging and educating thousands of performers young and old, and have the honour of listening to and coaching musicians and teachers as they work towards a greater understanding of the challenges of expression and communication through “art music”. I do this because as a young musician I was greatly inspired by the many wonderful teachers and musicians that I worked with, and this is a way that I can share my experience with the communities and musicians that are further from the larger metropolitan areas of Canada.
In some ways, Music festivals are a microcosm of our communities- they give us a chance to come together and learn what we are capable of, and to be inspired by those around us. This is yet one more casualty of the covID 19 virus this past year, as almost all the community groups like festivals have had to cancel. from smaller communities to large urban centers, the inability of our arts groups to come together has been felt by all of us. IT is my hope that as we move forward into he coming year we will be able to grow the festival movement into new ways of being together, and to be able to support our young (and older) musicians through the festival movement.
Having had a lifetime of support from so many people in the festival movement, I am happy to continue my roll as President of the Canadian Music Adjudicators Association, and help give back to those communities. I am proud of all the work so many people across Canada have done to support festivals in the past, and I am excited about the possibilities as we move forward. We all have a responsibility to support and encourage all performers, teachers and listeners to strive for the highest standards of detailed work and appreciation.
It is my goal to make the Music Festival experience a positive and encouraging one for all participants, as well as inspiring both student and teacher- and the volunteers of festivals- to strive for constant improvement in their chosen craft.