Why We Exist
“While winning was important to me, I learned so much more from my experience at the Festival. I learned from not only my own experience playing, listening to the judges, but also from the other players…if it weren’t for the Festival, I wouldn’t have reached the level that I am at now.” – Yina Tong, 2006 Rose Bowl winner, New England Conservatory Masters grad and touring cellist.
Education: The Festival encourages skill development in the performing arts for youth by providing a forum where they can perform, receive feedback from arts professionals, and learn from each other/peers.
“The [Calgary Performing Arts] Festival is a great place for young performers to learn, to work towards a goal and to make friends who share similar interests. It’s also a great way for young performers to share their musical gifts with the community.” – Scott MacIsaac, 2010 Rose Bowl winner, Yale School of Music grad and touring concert pianist.
Supporting emerging artists: The Festival serves as a critical venue for emerging artists, e.g. the Festival’s top prize, the Rose Bowl, comes with an opportunity to perform in concert with the Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra. Many internationally renowned musicians and singers started out performing at the Calgary Festival: Jane Coop, Susan Hoeppner, Michael Kim, Heather Schmidt, Annalee Patipatanakoon, and Jan Lisiecki.
“Having decided to go a different route and become an Engineer, I have found that some of the skills I learned through my festival years have served me exceptionally well. Having to prepare works of art and pay attention to every detail therein was a course in preparation I couldn’t have taken at any school or university. My presentation skills and ability to highlight details are at a much higher level than they would have been without my many years of performing in the Festival. Not only did the Festival set me up for my career on a technical level, but music, performance and the combination of both through the Festival gave me a sense of self confidence that had never existed before.” – Aiofe Donnelly, Drilling EIT
Life Skills: Not every Festival participant is destined for life under the spotlight. Participation in the Festival enables young people to learn valuable life lessons such as setting goals, time management and the satisfaction of achieving those goals – skill sets they can apply to whatever profession they choose.
“It’s a great festival. It’s so unique and so much fun – it’s a really great experience for kids. It taught me so much. I really loved it.” – Alexander Malikov, Quarter-finalist in the 2015 Honens International Piano Competition.
Arts appreciation: The Festival fosters appreciation of the performing arts by providing a positive experience for young people, who will carry these experiences into adulthood and become lifelong supporters of the arts.