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Sr Music Tour - Day 4

Whistler Olympic Village

This is the day!

The Cantando Music Festival brings together 3,200 music students from over 50 schools to work together to enhance their music skills and learn from each other.

To be sure, it feels like a competition and our students feel that they are here to perform and bring glory to God and Heritage.  But the true goal here is to compete with oneself, to show us how we can excel and come through, achieving excellence using our hard work and the help of our Creator.  

Our day started with a box breakfast catered to the hotel (and will be for the next few days, hotel breakfasts dont appear to be a Whistler thing).  The students were primed and ready looking very professional in their freshly ironed performance wear.  Hair pinned back, shirts tucked in and ties tightened up.

Walking to the festival for our Band clinic this morning I have to admit the pride I felt watching these amazing students all psyched up and ready to go.  On the way there were lots of comments about how well we presented ourselves (but no, the H on our ties does not mean we came from Harvard to compete).  We arrived at the conference hall for our warm ups at 930 and were in the concert hall at 10, ready to perform.

The band acquitted themselves very well.  The adrenaline of performing for the adjudicators and audience members is a great motivator and our students certainly made us very proud sitting in the audience.  After our 4 pieces we had a 50 minute clinic with one of the adjudicators who worked with use to help fine tune our presentation and our skills, its one of the most valuable parts of the festival for the students as they get to hear a very unbiased and unfamiliar person critique their work (or as Mr V says, "tell them the same thing that i do").  We are still awaiting any further feedback from them as there are three separate adjudicators that will confer on our performances and give us further feedback.  Our performance Video is below.

Shortly after the choral students went to rehearse with the "mass choir" which will perform Saturday night, with the Vocal Jazz changing and heading over to their clinic performance.  While we were waiting, we were able to take in the performance of a few other schools and support them in with cheers and applause.  A key part of the festival is sitting in on other school performances and cheering them on.

Vocal Jazz's performance, its kind of hard to explain but I would have to say they sang to each other.  There was no stiffness or many visible nerves, they simply came out to entertain each other and have fun making music together.  The audience truly loved their performance and treated them to lots of cheering and applause, and the adjudicator rewarded them with "Gold" for their performance.  See our extra blog posting for today for the performance video!

Luckily we had early draws for the festival today so we were able to head back to our hotel, get changed and head out to the main Whistler village for a photo app, lunch and free time shopping for the afternoon (or napping as some smart souls chose to do).  Some of the students decided as well that they wanted to spend the afternoon in the festival so they went back to watch even more performances.

We finished our day with another refreshing walk down to an artisan Pizzaria for dinner followed by Choir Practice (parking lot style).  In the evening we were treated to the Naden Band of the Canadian Navy (, featuring Order of Canada honoree Jens Lindeman ( of the Canadian Brass.  It was an amazing concert (with 1600 of our fellow musicians) and really reminded us that this festival and music programs like ours are what allows us to have such amazing music in our lives.

Finishing off a busy day, we had our devotions outside (it is so very nice here weather wise) and then off to bed, tomorrow is our main Choir and Jazz band clinic times! 

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