Greater Victoria Performing Arts Festival
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Each year about 5000 dancers, vocalists, musicians and dramatists perform on our city stages to adjudicators and the public, from late March through early May. A dozen highlights concerts feature an array of performances after the adjudicated sessions. Sections include Brass, Classical Guitar, Choral, Composition, Ethnic Dance, Fiddle, Piano, School Dance, Speech and Dramatic Arts, Strings, Studio Dance, Vocal and Woodwinds. Performers range in age from 5 to retired. Alumni include Kim Cattrall, Benjamin Butterfield, Richard Margison. Applaud the Future!
To arrange, promote and carry on adjudicated festivals for students of all ages in music and the performing arts and to engage in other activities having as their objective the development of artistic skills, the appreciation of music and its allied arts and ultimately, the pursuit of excellence.
The "Festival" is dedicated to the development of artistic skills, the appreciation of the performing arts and the pursuit of excellence. To this end:
1. It arranges and conducts a community Festival that encourages, through performance, participation in music, dance and speech arts.
2. It provides reputable practitioners to adjudicate in each discipline.
3. It fosters the values of self-discipline, teamwork and excellence and provides awards and scholarships that recognize achievement.
4. It arranges and promotes special concerts that celebrate achievement and participation, through performance, in music, dance and speech arts.
The "Festival" began in 1927 as the Victoria Music Festival, its purpose being "to promote, arrange and carry on competitive musical festivals, and to engage in other activities having as their object the development of musical ability and appreciation of good music and its allied arts". At that time it was a major event in the City's cultural and social life with - according to the Mayor in 1935 - one-tenth of Victoria's population represented. Two of the trophies currently awarded have their roots in those first years - the Rose Bowl (voice) and the City of Victoria Medallion (piano).
Over the years, the name has changed to reflect the addition of studio dance and speech arts and instruments have been added and deleted. Currently, there are classes in Brass, Choral, Classical Guitar, Composers, Ethnic Performance, Fiddle, Harp, Piano, School Dance, School Bands, Speech and Dramatic Arts, Strings, Studio Dance, Orchestras, Vocal and Woodwinds. Participants range in age from 4 - 70 years.
The "Festival" is a member of the Provincial Festival and provides students with the opportunity to be recommended by adjudicators for competition at the Provincial and National levels. As a result, it has been and continues to be, an important stepping-stone for many talented young Victoria musicians and performing arts students in their development as professional artists.
The "festival" is a non-profit society. It is a registered charity under the Income Tax Act. Volunteer-based and managed by an elected Board of Directors, the Festival is a seven week of classes, concerts and special competitions during April and May of each year, supported by approximately 200 volunteers.
Listing last confirmed: Feb. 4, 2013