The Cariboo Festival welcomes home one of its own to adjudicate the band section this year.
Ed Schnellert grew up in Williams Lake, took piano lessons here and excelled at our music festival, winning many awards and trophies over the years.
While still in high school, Ed accompanied the church choir, played weekly at services and was an integral part of his father’s “Harmony Stars” band.
Oktoberfests in Williams Lake were a success thanks to Harry Schnellert and his boys.
Now Ed is an amazing professional musician, the senior music director at Okanagan Mission Secondary School in Kelowna.
He has expanded the program to become one of the most successful in Western Canada, overseeing over 500 music students in concert band, jazz band, commercial music, choir and musical theatre courses.
He has directed nine international music festivals in Japan, Italy, Germany, France, Croatia and Austria.
He founded and co-directs the OKM FAME Academy, presents at music educator’s conferences and is passionately committed to excellence in public school music education.
Schnellert holds a Bachelor of Education in Secondary Music Education, and a Masters in Education/Music technology, with piano proficiency at ARCT level.
He is also a professional musician who has performed in dozens of bands and vocal ensembles since 1981 with repertoire that covers a very broad spectrum of music from different eras and styles.
Grading, judging, and adjudicating is done in constant partnership and in real time with students, where everyone knows the criteria for excellence and monitors our own listening and learning, Schnellert says in his biography.
This lowers the emphasis on external judgment and competition, and raises the focus towards self-awareness and the foundational cornerstone of music “the intrinsic – our enjoyment, fulfilment, and deep expressions made in our musical experiences.”
Another exciting visitor to the Cariboo Festival this month will be Caroline Johnson who grew up in Williams Lake excelling in piano at the festival during her school years and who is now teaching in Hagensborg and will be bringing her student honour band to the festival this week.
This year’s band entries include the Williams Lake Community band and all of our high school bands conducted by Dena Baumann and Laura Eilers.
More than 11 band students will be participating.
The band performances of Cariboo Festival 2015 will begin on Sunday evening, April 19, at St. John Lutheran Church starting at 7 p.m.
The Williams Lake Community Band will be adjudicated Sunday evening and there will also be a performance by Caroline Johnson’s school band from Hagensborg.
The performances for adjudication continue Monday, April 20 at Lake City Secondary, Williams Lake Campus in the morning and the Columneetza campus in the afternoon.
A detailed schedule is available online at our website www. cariboofestivalsociety. Admission is by donation.
The community is welcome for coffee and tea after the band performances on Sunday evening.