Anna Mitchell is busy this week preparing for her role as a competitor at the provincial music festival in Fort St. John May 31 to June 4.
Part of that preparation was performing in a concert held at St. Peter’s Anglican Church Wednesday evening featuring Quintet Plus, the trio Synergy and Anna singing the songs she is preparing for the provincials.
Anna was selected as a provincial vocal competitor by adjudicator Melanie Nicol, during the Cariboo Festival held in the lakecity during April.
A highlight of her musical year, this was Anna’s fourth year participating in the Cariboo Festival. All four years she has been selected to perform at the Honours Concert.
Anna was chosen as an observer for the provincial festival last year but was not able to attend, so she is thrilled to be going as a competitor this year.
“I am really looking forward to performing and watching the other competitors,” says Anna. “I also like to hear what the adjudicators say.”
In the Junior Classical Voice category Anna will sing three songs: Non lo diro col labbro, The Owls, and Beautiful Dreamer.
In the Junior Vocal Variety category she will sing My Favourite Things.
When she isn’t singing around her home, Anna can be found singing at various venues around the city including the Seniors’ Village and Deni House and at Performances in the Park in 2013 and 2014.
Last Christmas Anna sang during the special Christmas Eve service held at Williams Lake Alliance Church.
“I like how the notes go together and make beautiful music, and learning new songs. I love performing and acting on stage,” Anna says of her love for singing which began at an early age.
Anna gave her first performance at age three when she sang dressed as a little lamb for her Sunday school Christmas pageant.
“When it was time for the pre-school class to sing, Anna marched up and planted herself in front of the only microphone,” says her mother, Amy.
“She belted the song out so loudly that she drowned out the rest of her class. Everyone in the audience was laughing quietly, shoulders shaking. I often remember that moment when I see Anna on stage.”
Around age seven, Amy says Anna was listening to a CD called Mozart’s Magic Fantasy, a re-make for children of Mozart’s opera The Magic Flute, produced by Classical Kids.
She fell in love with the song The Queen of the Night Aria.
“After hearing her singing along with the song we realized she had the potential to sing quite well with some training, and contacted Michelle Erlandson about lessons,” Amy says.
Erlandson conducts the Quintet Plus choir.
Since then Anna’s main goal has been to “really” sing opera.
“She was quite excited to be performing her Italian piece, from Handel’s opera, Tolomeo, in the festival this year,” Amy says.
Now 13 is a home-schooled student in Grade 7. She will take her Grade 4 exam in voice this June.
Anna also started piano lessons this year and has often talked about becoming a music teacher someday.
“We’ve been really spoiled to have a teacher who has her A.R.C.T. in both voice and piano,” Amy says. “Michelle really knows her stuff and has done a great job making sure Anna is a well rounded musician who really understands her music.”