Fort St. John will host the 2024 Performing Arts BC festival this summer from June 2 to 6, inviting talented musicians and performers to take part in special master classes, lectures, coaching, workshops, technique classes, and adjudications. 

Performing Arts BC was established as a non-profit charity in 1964, and acts as the umbrella organization for 34 local and regional performing arts festivals throughout the province. The festival are diverse in both size and scope, with over 26,000 young musicians, dancers, and dramatic artists taking part each year, ranging in age from 5 to 25. 

The Peace River North Festival Association will manage the provincial festival, with local organizing committee co-chairs Margaret May and Jan McKale presenting Peace River North Festival as the host festival to Fort St. John city council during their Monday meeting. 

"It's held each year in a different community, we try to go North, South, East, West, it's not always possible, but we try to spread it around the province," said May. 

Fort St. John was the host festival in 2016, but has been involved with the provincial group since the 1980s, explained McKale. The event is a great source of community pride, added May, inspiring both local artists and visitors.

"The festival gives very positive exposure for the city of Fort St. John around the province," said May, noting many people would have never visited the North Peace without the festival. 

It's estimated that around 600 delegates and their families are expected to visit Fort St. John, with more than 300 hotel rooms already booked for visitors to the city, often covering the cost to attend from their own pockets. More than 100 volunteers are needed to run the provincial festival and sponsorship and financial support is being sought. 

Performances take place throughout the community, not just at the North Peace Cultural Centre, including many local churches which have pianos that can be used by artists, explained May. 

The best performers across all disciplines are recommended by local festivals for Provincial Excellence classes with a grand prize of $5,000, while outstanding competitors in three levels of competition in music and speech arts disciplines may also be recommended to the Canada West Performing Arts Festival.

You can read the presentation in full here: 

Peace River North Festival Association Presentation by Tom Summer on Scribd

Tom Summer, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, Alaska Highway News

2024-01-10T00:42:22Z dg43tfdfdgfd