The Alberta hills are alive with the sound of music!

By Trevor Funk
Garden Valley Collegiate
Winkler, MB

Take a deep breath and blow that horn! The Rockies may have been a wink away, but this weekend all eyes were on the leader of the band. Students from across the nation took part in the ninth annual "Canadian Rocky Mountain Festival" held in Banff AB, May 6-9.


In order to receive an invitation, each group had to go through a screening process where a recording of their performance was assessed. More than 130 bands, choirs, and jazz bands from about 50 different schools took part in this festival at the Banff Centre. One school recognized was the Garden Valley Collegiate from Winkler, MB.

The GVC Concert Band (conducted by Mr. Paul Moen) and the GVC Senior Choir (conducted by Ms. Loretta Thorleifson) both performed at a high level in this prestigious event. Students were involved in performances along with a musical clinic that offered helpful advice for each performer. Highly respected adjudicators like Mr. Bruce Pearson and Dr. Gerald King were involved in making this festival enjoyable, as well as a learning experience for the students and conductors. One student said, "I learned more about music in three days than I have in six years of band class." To add a groovy style, special performances were put on by the McGill Jazz Orchestra and the Form Vocal Jazz Ensemble.

The students also got chance to take a break from the music and enjoy the beautiful sites in Banff. It looks like this festival was an all-around success!