By Jenn Watt
Published May 8 2018
For more than two decades the Haliburton Highlands Music Festival has been giving musicians an opportunity to improve their skill and practise their art.
The event includes days of non-competitive performance with professional adjudicators followed by a Highlights Concert at the Northern Lights Performing Arts Pavilion.
As it has in years past the concert on May 3 showcased the progress made by participants delighting the audience who came to cheer them on.
“There are lots of ways to compete in life” said MC Len Pizzey who sponsors the event with his wife Kit. This festival isn’t one of those ways. The goal is to create a supportive enjoyable environment that is fun and enriching he said.
The evening included musical performances by students just starting out and others who had been honing their technique for years.
The audience whooped with joy when their loved ones braved the stage and whispered appreciation to each other through some of the more advanced pieces careful not to distract.
The performers were often just as pleased. As Violet Humphries completed her rendition of “Angelfish” on the piano a satisfied smile crept over her face.
Tate Itani Smith seemed comfortable and confident as she acted out the lyrics of “Shy” from Once Upon A Mattress. “That was awesome” gasped a member of the audience.
Thanks to sponsorships from local individuals and businesses many participants in the festival were awarded scholarships and they were presented with those awards on Thursday evening.
Scholarship recipients: Kurtis Adams Anabelle Craig Jacob Dobson Haliburton Youth Ensemble Aiden Hill Isabel Hill Olivia Humphries Violet Humphries Tess Husbands Campbell Itani Smith Tate Itani Smith Kip Kelly Sadie Kelly Emily Klose Maya Meraw Julie Moffitt Adrien Petric Lillian Ramsdale and Carson Winmill.