Alice Afternoon photo will be one of the evening ensemble performances in cantabile during Music Week.

Campbell River’s grand celebration of music

One of the highlights of the event is the Ruth Scott Chopin Competition, now in its sixth year

An 11-day celebration of music in Campbell River begins Thursday April 24, as the Friends of Music open their 27th annual Music Week.

One of the highlights of the event is the Ruth Scott Chopin Competition, now in its sixth year.

On Sunday, April 27, at 7:30 p.m., students will vie for the coveted Ruth Scott prize of $500, given to the student judged, by Fiesta Master Teacher Lori Elder, to have given the best performance of a Chopin work. Admission to the event, held at Trinity Presbyterian Church on Simms Road, is by donation. Previous winners at this popular concert have been Dean Sanchez, Towa Stewart, Micah Brush, Carter Johnson and Liana Kelly.

Ruth Scott was a much-loved piano teacher and founding member of the Friends of Music. After her death, her friends and family chose to honour her through a competition featuring the music of Chopin, her favourite composer.

Music Week is a non-competitive music festival featuring students of all ages playing the piano (Fiesta and Carnival), the violin and cello (Pizzicato) and singing (Cantabile).

Pizzicato starts on Thursday morning at 9 a.m., April 24, with students in Royal Conservatory, Suzuki, and Fiddle classes. Master teacher James Mark will work with students in a master class setting. Mark was born and raised in Nanaimo and has been studying music since the age of four. He frequently performs with the Vancouver Island Symphony and is on faculty at Malaspina University and the Nanaimo Conservatory of Music.

Under the guidance of Cantabile Master Teacher, Dr. Marvin Regier, voice students of all ages, including a number of adults, will perform, with their accompanists, folk songs, classical solos, sacred music, jazz and musical theatre.  Dr. Regier is very active as a vocal pedagogue, music theatre director, music festival adjudicator, and a guest clinician for vocal and choral workshops.

Cantabile begins on Friday afternoon at 2 p.m., April 25. The Friday and Saturday evening sessions, which begin at 6 p.m.  feature musical theatre performances and ensembles.

Fiesta participants are piano students in Royal Conservatory Grade Three and above. They are grouped according to the type of music they play – Romantic,

Baroque, Popular music etc., and their grade level. Master teacher Lori  Elder, who grew up in this area and studied with Kay Wilson, holds a masters degree in piano performance from the University of Toronto, a Bachelor of Music from the University of British Columbia and ARCT (performer) certification. She currently operates an independent studio in Prince George where she specializes in senior piano and pedagogy. The Fiesta portion of Music Week runs from Monday, April 28 at 9 a.m. until Friday morning May 2.

Students in their first years of piano study, some as young as five years old, take part in Carnival, which runs from Friday evening at 6:30 p.m., May 2 until Sunday afternoon. They perform in small groups according to their age and level, and work with Francis Perriam who has been pianist and harpsichordist with the Victoria Symphony for over 20 years, during which time she has performed as soloist and in the orchestra.

The master teachers recommend performers for the Finale Concert, to take place on Friday, May 9 at the Trinity Presbyterian Church. This very popular concert, which begins at 7, will also feature the winner of the Ruth Scott Chopin Competition.

All events, take place at the Trinity Presbyterian Church, and the public is welcome to attend for a very modest fee.

For more information about Music Week, check out the Friends of Music website (

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