Gateway Gazette

Alumni Concert to start High River Lions Music Festival Season

The High River and District Lions Music Festival is back for its 2015 season, and it begins with a celebration of past seasons.

An Alumni Concert on February 28, 2015 at the High River United Church will be the official kickoff for the competitive festival.

“This concert will give former volunteers, families and supporters a chance to meet, greet and enjoy friends from the past,” says Board Member Joanne Harris. “It will also raise awareness in the community for our festival, and give us all a wonderful night to look forward to in the midwinter”.

Individuals who have participated in the festival in previous years, even as long ago as the first High River Music Festival in 1979, are invited to contact the festival to join in.

Recognizing that many of the former performers are no longer High River residents, Harris has stated that an honourarium will be available for performers at the Alumni Concert.

Alumni are encouraged to contact Alyshia Hobday at al.day@hotmail.com or (403) 652-9742 or the Festival at musicfestivalhr@gmail.com.

Volunteers are needed for the 2015 Festival in late March

The Festival is also looking for volunteers for various shifts during the festival from March 16 to March 27.

“Our festival would not be possible without the support of our volunteers,” said President Joel Windsor.

The shifts vary from morning to evening, and from manning the entry table to helping the Adjudicators in the performance venue. Those interested in volunteering are asked to contact Lori Koehler at mkoehler@telus.net.

Registration Period ends in January

The Festival includes classes in Band, Brass, Woodwinds, Percussion, Choir, Voice, Musical Theatre, Guitar, Strings, and Piano.

Registrations close on January 31, 2015, and are accepted using the festival’s online registration system.
Windsor says the online registration system was such a success last year that other festivals in the province have adopted it.

“We’ve also produced some Help Videos to help new participants through the process of registering, and have heard some great feedback on the whole process.”

Windsor projected a finalized schedule to be in participants hands by Valentine’s Day.

To register, visit the festival’s website at http://www.musicfestivalhr.com.

Festival operates entirely on donations and sponsorships

The Festival is also accepting donations and seeking sponsors for the 2015 Festival.

“The Highwood Lions Club has been our patron sponsor for many years, and we are forever grateful for their support,” said Windsor.

Windsor said that while the Lions Club has been such a great supporter, the costs of the Festival are larger than can be expected from a single sponsor.

“Last year we had financial help come from all over the province, showing kindness following the flood,” said Windsor.

“This year we are really hoping to reconnect with more local sponsors, as they have historically been the main supporters of our young musicians.”

For more information about the High River and District Lions Music Festival, visit www.musicfestivalhr.com.

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