19th annual Dufferin Youth Festival of the Arts a success

May 19, 2016   ·   0 Comments

The 19th annual Dufferin Youth Festival of the Arts was held Tuesday, April 26 to Friday, April 29 at Compass Community Church and, as usual, was a huge success.

Over the four days nearly 2,000 children from elementary schools in the Upper Grand  District School Board, Dufferin-Peel Catholic schools and the area’s private schools took part.

Each morning a different band acted as the Host Band  — the ODSS (Orangeville District Secondary School) Jazz Band, Erin Public School, Robert  F. Hall Catholic Secondary School, and a group organized by Dennis Hahn — and played while the students arrived and took their places.

Each morning, festival co-ordinators Wendy Carter, Mary Runiciman and Sharon Larsen welcomed everyone and then MC’s Bernadette Hardaker and Lynda McDougall took over and the mornings began with going over the rules of the day and much merriment and laughter.

Each morning, guests were welcomed — including Upper Grand’s Director of Education Dr. Martha Rogers, Dufferin-Peel MP David Tilson and MPP Sylvia Jones, Deputy Mayor of Mono Ken McGhee, Orangeville Police Chief Wayne Kalinski, Shelburne Police Chief Kent Moore and OPP Cst. Shannon Gordaneer, former Orangeville Mayor Mary Rose and former Upper Grand Trustee Bob Borden.

Taking part in this year’s festival were the following schools: Princess Margaret, Hillcrest, St. Benedict, Hyland Heights, Princess Elizabeth, East Garafraxa, Ecole elementaire des Quatre-Rivieres, Primrose, Orangeville Christian, Centennial Hylands, Glenbrook, Alton, Maples Academy, Laurelwoods, St. Peter, Credit Meadows, Island Lake, Erin, Spencer Avenue, Brisbane, Parkinson Centennial, Mono Amaranth, Headwater Hills and Montgomery Village.

Each day was filled with choirs, bands, portions of musicals, drums, instrumentals, all presented with great enthusiasm and received by the audiences with that same enthusiasm.

Overall teachers seemed to feel that they, as music teachers, were being appreciated and that the experience for the students was very worthwhile, giving students a look at the variety of arts that are available in the schools and what they can look forward to.

They also commented on the beautiful visual arts display, which students and teachers had a chance to visit on the break time. Various schools contributed pieces of art in various forms, which teachers felt contributes to students finding that there are different and other ways of approaching music and the arts.

Co-founder Wendy Carter was pleased with the great participation of the various schools and the calibre of the performances and the help of the volunteers.

At the Award of Excellence Ceremony, held Wednesday afternoon, the Teacher of the Year Award was presented to Robert F. Hall Principal Tom Wisnicki and the Volunteer of the Year Award to Ann McAlpine. That event was held at Princess Elizabeth PS.

Plans are already under way for the 20th celebration and the organizers look forward to another year of great participation from the students and teachers from all the schools.

Thanks is expressed to the sponsors of the event: Compass Community Church, Carters Professional Corporation, Orangeville Citizen, Dufferin Arts Council, Theatre Orangeville, Runley Productions, Inc., and the Upper Grand District School Board.

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