Moose Jaw Band And Choral Festival
If anyone would like to add their comments about our festival,
please contact Sharon
The goal of music education through band/choir programs and Festivals like the Moose Jaw Band and Choral Festival is to encourage students to love music not merely as entertainment or amusement. Instead, our goal is to provide a caring, nurturing and creative environment that both encourages and empowers students to share in and embrace in each other a sense of what is good, just and beautiful.
Both the arts and athletics play an integral role in the lives of our kids and thank goodness, otherwise we’re left with simply going to work, coming home and mowing the lawn.
It’s a great festival and it’s really well run. You are treated like absolute royalty. The facilities are great, the kids are great, and the bands have been great. It’s been everything we were told it was.
Jeff Johnson, jazz band clinician 2012, interviewed by the Moose Jaw Times-Herald and the Moose Jaw Express.
Thank you for inviting me to adjudicate this year's festival. It is a great festival- both from a an organizational standpoint and as a performing vehicle. You can judge the level of a festival by the quality of groups that enter and, the Moose Jaw Band Festival attracts wonderful bands, choirs and ensembles.
The organizational committee, in particular Sharon Penner, is to be commended for the precise way the festival is run. I know there had to be little, or perhaps large problems along the way but, as an adjudicator I was never aware. To me, things seemed to run perfectly. Everyone seemed to know what his or her job was, and performed his or her task to a falter.
One of the most attractive things about this festival is its empahsis on education. There are no first places or awards; only clinics. The goal for an adjudicator is to take the performing ensemble from where it is, to a little closer to where it could be. The learning aspect is what is celebrated; that doesn't happen as many festivals.
The Moose Jaw Club is undoubtedly proud of such a long running event. In the music world, at least the music education world, Moose Jaw is known as the place who runs ''. The Club has a lot to be thankful for in having Sharon at the helm of this event. She will be a difficult person to replace- her talents are beyond reproach.
As a Moose Jaw girl, I was proud and thankful to return to the 'Mecca'. Thanks for the opportunity and, happy 60th anniversary.
"We had a great time! All of the adjudicators were top notch, and we enjoyed the performance on Thursday night at that gorgeous theater. The tunnels were a big hit, the museum (WDM) was impressive, and I even got some sleep! All in all, a great trip!"
Martin Kennedy Music Director Holy Trinity Academy Okotoks, AB
I was invited back to Moose Jaw to adjudicate the Band and Choir Festival this past May. I moved to Calgary from Moose Jaw 15 years ago to find greener pastures. Moose Jaw was stagnant and the Festival seemed to have its days numbered. Well, things have certainly changed for the better for Moose Jaw. What I discovered was so exciting. The festival is better than ever offering an educational musical experience for bands and choirs. It has become a great opportunity for students to perform in a non-competitive atmosphere with a lengthy clinic to follow. The students also get to attend evening performances in a world class theater. The festival committee and especially Sharon Penner and Bill McDonald should be commended for continuing the tradition of the festival with a positive 21st century outlook. I must say that the “renaissance” of Moose Jaw is truly awesome. The Spa, Casino, new businesses including restaurants, shops and stores and the revitalization of Main Street is simply amazing. I was completely blown away by the cultural center. It is a stunning arts center for this community with the potential for years of arts events.I left a dieing town to return to a vibrant and thriving community. Had I known what the future held for Moose Jaw I may never have left. I hope upon my next visit to see more growth including the new Sportsplex. Keep it up!!!!!
Brian Uzick 2006
I'm writing to congratulate the city of Moose Jaw on it's 2005 edition of the International Band Festival. The last Moose Jaw festival that I attended was in 1960 when I was a 15 year old saxophone player in the Dinsmore Community Band. This year I was invited to adjudicate the jazz bands with trombonist Alastair Kay of the True North Brass, Toronto. I have attended many festivals throughout Canada during the 45 year interlude and feel that the Moose Jaw Festival rates as one of the best. It was refreshing to see all the venues properly outfitted with sound equipment, stands, chairs and the necessary volunteers to insure that events ran smoothly and efficiently. The choice of artists for the evening concerts with jazz singer Karen Marklinger and The True North Brass were truly motivational events that thrilled the many young people in the audiences, many whom I'm sure went home to practice their music with renewed vigor.. much like I did after hearing trumpet virtuoso Rafael Mendez at the festival in 1960. There was a tremendous spirit and feeling of intimacy to the festival that comes when you have so many cheerful and accommodating people volunteering their time and energy to make things work, something you rarely experience in larger centers like Vancouver, where I live. A tip of the hat to festival organizers Sharon Penner and Bill McDonald, they obviously know what they're doing. Yes, 45 years have passed, and once again I leave Moose Jaw feeling inspired. Glenn David Jazz Band Clinician, 2005 Vancouver, BC
"Your festival is so well organized and everything just seems to happen "tickety-boo". Congratulations on a job well done. " James Hawn, Choral Clinician, 2005
"My band had such a great time and were jaw dropped at the talented clinicians and their concert on Thursday night. Thanks again for a fabulous time last year." Janice Jensen County Community Band Tilley, AB May 2005
"We all hope to be back to Moose Jaw in the future." Jim Gardiner Night Show Guest Artist, True North Brass, 2005
"Thank you for the opportunity to come to Moose Jaw to play in your beautiful theatre in front of such a lively and enthusiastic audience. What a kick! We really enjoyed the whole evening." Karen Marklinger Night Show Guest Artist, 2005
"I am very pleased to see that the new festival format has been implemented to meet the needs of current music educators. Providing a one hour clinic by two adjudicators (clinicians) for each band and choir encourages participation in an educational environment. Congratulations to the citizens of Moose Jaw for your continued support of this proud Saskatchewan tradition." Larry Pearen 2003 Clinician & Past President, Canadian Band Association
The following was a dedication to our 55th annual festival written by Clifton Bryson (1918-2004). Clif died just a few short days after writing the following: "In the late 1940s when I was bandmaster of the RCMP Band, I was interviewed by members of the Moose Jaw . They were anxious to form an annual band festival. The Commissioner of the RCMP in Ottawa was contacted, and he gave me permission to give the whatever help I could. Needless to say, it took many hours, many days, and many months, but we did it ! And now, how gratifying it is to see what you have accomplished fifty-five years later. You have extended your program to include all forms of bands, jazz groups, and choral organizations. Congratulations on your fine organization and your committment to music." Best wishes, Clif Bryson (1918-2004)