Campbell River Friends of Music has made a mark on the musical scene with its non-competitive music festival called Campbell River Music Week.
It attracts students from up and down Vancouver Island and often teachers and students prefer the non-competitive nature of this festival, as it gives an opportunity for all students to benefit from the teaching component. This is the festival’s 32nd year, and it has evolved from a five-day piano festival to a strings/voice/piano festival.
Well-known master teachers lead the sessions of 1 to 6 students and give feedback to improve performances. Often it is just family members who attend but the public is welcome as well. Audiences are invited to attend any portion of the festival – the two musical theatre evenings are especially popular, which will be April 26-27 this year. The fee is $2 per session, or $5 for a pass for the entire two weeks. All events are at the Trinity Presbyterian Church on Simms Road.
Musicians who have trained with local teachers and who have gone onto careers as professionals often come back to be the master teachers. Such is the case this year with Carter Johnson, who was the student of local piano teacher Shelley Roberts. He now resides in Vancouver with his wife and son, while studying, teaching, adjudicating and performing. In addition to having A.R.C.T.s in piano performance and in piano pedagogy, he has a Bachelor of Music in piano performance from UBC. Johnson will be the master teacher for Carnival, which is for beginning pianists of all ages. Students are put into groups of their own age and level. This will take place from Friday afternoon May 3 until Saturday evening May 4.
Pizzicato is for string players, and will be led by master teacher Karl Rainer. It includes Suzuki classes, Conservatory classes, fiddle, ensembles, and adults. It will take place Tuesday-Wednesday April 23-24.
Cantabile is for voice and will be led by master teacher Kim Greenwood. It includes open solo, folk songs, sacred, musical theatre, jazz/contemporary, duets or ensembles. It will be Thursday April 25 until Saturday April 27. A unique feature of Cantabile is its vocal masterclasses, where students may perform several numbers and receive an intensive coaching session with the Master Teacher.
Pianists from RCM Grade Three and higher perform at Fiesta, which runs from Monday morning April 29 until Friday morning May 3. The Master Teacher this year is Katherine Bundt.
Also included in Campbell River Music Week is the Ruth Scott Chopin Competition, in which 10 students will perform pieces by Chopin, competing for a $500 award. This concert is April 28 at 7:00 at Trinity Presbyterian Church. Admission is by donation.
The festival is crowned by the Finale Concert, featuring performances chosen by the master teachers. This will be Sunday May 5 at 2:30 p.m. admission is by donation.