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Wednesday, 30 March 2016 14:01

Music Festival's Xtravaganza Awards Ceremony April 3

Written by  Barb Levorson
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The Swift Current and District Music Festival has concluded its 87th year, hosting music students of all ages.


This year there were entries in a wide variety of disciplines including piano, bands, vocal and choral, musical theatre, speech arts and strings.
“Music Festival is a wonderful opportunity for students to perform and learn, and receive professional feedback and encouragement,” said Festival President Andrea Neustaeter recently.
“It is always interesting to see students return year after year, and see how they have grown and changed as musicians. We are so happy for them, and look forward to seeing them develop in the future.”
This year marked a significant change for the Swift Current Festival as it took all their registrations and programming on-line.
“We have been talking about this for a couple of years now,” said Neustaeter. “This year, we made the investment to develop a new website and accept registrations electronically. It allowed us to help to streamline that process which was pretty labour intensive.”
Neustaeter remarked this has been a learning process for everyone involved in the Festival.
“We discovered some challenges with the technology, but on the whole, this has made it easier for our volunteers, and reduced our environmental footprint as well.
“Next year, we know where to make improvements which will make our internal operations more efficient, and more user-friendly for students and teachers.”
The final Xtravaganza Awards Ceremony will be held Sunday, April 3 at 7 p.m. at Church of the Open Bible in Swift Current.
This is an opportunity for the public to come and see some of the best performances of the Festival, and students will receive scholarships and awards.
Several local students have been recommended to advance to the Provincial Music Festival in June.
“Provincials are an exciting opportunity to meet other musicians from across the province and it definitely requires students to perform at a higher caliber,” said Neustaeter.
“From there, there is opportunity to be recommended to the National Music Festival. That’s when you are approaching world class standards.”
There are a large number of people who come together to organize and produce a Festival of this size. The Festival is supported by many volunteers and sponsors.
“We are very fortunate and appreciative of the support we receive from volunteers, teachers and sponsors. Without this support, the Festival would not be possible,” said Neustaeter.
“We are particularly grateful to our major sponsors and donors for their support: Golden West Broadcasting, the Kiwanis of Swift Current, the Registered Music Teachers of Swift Current, ACT/UCT Dominion Council, Kiwanis Club of Prairie Pioneers, Innovation Credit Union, Melhoff Electric, Castle Design and Marketing, and Pharmasave.”
Provincial sponsors include: SaskTel, Sask Lotteries, SaskEnergy, Potash Corp, SaskCulture, the Saskatchewan Arts Board, artsVest, and Mr. Lube of Regina.
“There are so many others as well, and we work to ensure that every contribution goes to making the Festival a positive and rewarding experience for the students,” said Neustaeter.
“The Music Festival is an opportunity for students to discipline their talents and present their best. It’s a personal journey of discovery about their strengths and how to push their boundaries to be even better. They not only learn more about music, but more about themselves as well.”
About the Swift Current & District Music Festival
The SC&DMF is a music competition for amateur musicians, and is enjoying its 87th year of continuous operation.
For more information the SC&DMF organization, visit the website at www.scmusicfestival.ca.

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