The students of Tara School of Irish Dancing take a moment outside the Tidemark Theatre to celebrate their performance at the 2019 Rotary Honours Concert on Sunday. Photo courtesy Tara School of Irish Dancing

Rotary Honours Concert celebrates young Campbell River performers

Music, dancing, singing, acrobatics and more at annual event showcasing student talent

Once again, the people of Campbell River packed the Tidemark Theatre on Sunday afternoon to see some of the best and brightest young performing artists in our community celebrate their craft.

The Rotary Honours Concert, which is put on each March, is just one of Rotary’s many gifts to the community.

The brainchild of Susie Moscovich, who unfortunately couldn’t be in attendance this year due to illness, the event showcases musicians, dancers, gymnasts and bands over the course of the afternoon. Gary McLelan, one of this year’s masters of ceremony, says it’s a chance to show the young artists of Campbell River that they have the community’s support.

“These are some of the top young performers in Campbell River and we’re very proud to support their personal and professional success,” McLelan says. “One of the things I think that people maybe don’t appreciate is how rich in culture and arts – especially in our young people. We have so many different groups that participate in various forms of music and dancing and First Nations events and culture. It’s a very, very unique community we have.”

McLelan says it’s also an opportunity for the public to get a glimpse into the future of the professional world of the performing arts, in some ways. You just never know when you’re going to be able to say, at some point down the road, “I saw them perform when they were still in high school.”

“Another thing to keep in mind is that a lot of these young people are going to go on from here and become professionals,” McLelan says. “We’ve had a number of people from the Campbell River performing arts scene who have gone on to take professional positions all over the world. We’ve got some pretty hot-shot students here.”

This year’s performers were the Carihi Jazz Band, 17-year-old pianist Julie Matsuzawa, Raincoast School of Musical Theatre, the Campbell River Children’s Choir, Tara School of Irish Dancing, Studio North Dance Academy, Kathy Mascia School of Dance, Solstice Studio of Performing Arts, Urban Dance Connection and CR DanceXtreme.

Those in attendance were asked to fill in a ballot for the People’s Choice Award given out at the end of the night, and Solstice Studio of Performing Arts took home the $500 award with the combination of their hoop team’s performance of “The Mist” and their acro team’s performance of “Ascension.”

All the performers were also given gift certificates from McDonalds as thanks for their efforts, as well as a formal certificate of achievement from Rotary.

McLelan says that while he and Mary Rolinki – the other MC that night – “could not match Susie’s style and elegance, the concert, by all accounts, was a great success. We owe a special thanks to stage director Heather Gordon Murphy, who was, as always a consummate professional.”

Check out some of the performances from the event here:

Tidemark Theatre

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Raincoast Musical Theatre’s Jenna Beauregard performs “Not For The Life of Me” during Sunday’s Rotary Honours Concert at the Tidemark Theatre. Photo by Mike Davies/Campbell River Mirror

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