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Maple Creek and District Music Festival: Three qualify for the finals

Posted on May 3, 2022 by Maple Creek
Allison Gordon (pictured), Kinley Pratt, and Lesley Levorson have qualified for the provincial music finals taking place in Saskatoon next month.

Wreathed in smiles, Allison Gordon holds a trophy that will bear her name as the outstanding performer at the 2022 Maple Creek and District Music Festival.
It was the last of several awards she received for singing, spoken word, speech arts and drama.
Although accolades are nothing new to her, joy lit up her face. The thrill of being before an appreciative audience never palls.
“I love performing,” the 21-year-old told the News-Times.
“It is very exciting every time.”
It was a proud evening for her teacher, Heather Macnab, who knows how much hard work lies behind the accomplishments.
“I am delighted for her,” she said.
Gordon is one of three festival performers that will go on to compete at the provincial finals in Saskatoon, June 2-5.
She has qualified in three categories, two for singing, one for spoken word, and is also eligible to compete for speech arts at the Canada West festival.
The other provincial qualifiers are Kinley Pratt (piano and spoken word) and Lesley Levorson, who will compete in four categories, two in voice, two for musical theatre.
There were 17 participants in this year’s music festival at Maple Creek United Church on April 25 and 26. The categories were: voice, musical theatre, piano, and spoken word.
It was the first in-person festival in three years because of the COVID-19 pandemic: the 2020 edition was cancelled, while last year’s event was held virtually.
On Friday, the finale and awards ceremony took place at the United Church.
Nine students performed: Lawrence Suba, T-R. Freeman, Kinley Pratt, Leticia Hope, Anna Flett, Danika Hope, Lesley Levorson, Allison Gordon, and Cadence Pratt.
A 10th student, Ivy Parker, was unable to attend.
After each performance, awards were announced, including scholarships, plaques and the “outstanding performer” trophy. The full list is printed on Page 2.
The finale began with remarks by Macnab, president of the Maple Creek and District Music Festival Association, and her son, Andrew Hecker, a past president.
Macnab described it as a “pleasure and joy” to be president.
“The last time we had a final concert for our music festival was 2019,” she said. “Three years have gone by and it felt a little funny tonight. I wasn’t sure what we were supposed to do, but here we are.”
Macnab said the Maple Creek festival is part of an umbrella organization: the Saskatchewan Music Festival Association.
“It connects us to the other music festivals all around Saskatchewan and small places and big places, it provides us with a provincial level of festival for kids to advance to, they hire our adjudicators for us, they provide us with just a heck of a lot of rules, good rules and regulations.”
Macnab and Hecker introduced Maple Creek festival association volunteers.
As well as themselves, they include Diane Moss, Chelsea Cox, and Marianne Gordon.
“If you have any inkling that you would like to join the festival association, let me know,” said Macnab.
In her wrap-up comments, Macnab spoke of the importance in keeping the festival going.
“I hope you will spread the word,” she said. “Tell other people what a great thing it is to be in the music festival.”
She added that the last two years of the COVID pandemic has been very hard on the arts.
“So, suggest to your friends, colleagues and school teachers that it would be great to be in the music festival.”
After the finale, Allison Gordon posed for photographs with her trophy.
Speaking to the News-Times, she said performing in music festivals had become a familiar part of her life.
“I used to get nervous, but not any more, unless I don’t know the words,” she said.
Allison started taking voice lessons at about the age of 9. Speech arts lessons started two or three years later.
“I have always loved singing, it’s my favourite thing to do, bar none. When I was little, my brother loved singing.
“Heather has put on musicals every fall and my brother was always in the musicals and I would be in awe of the singing. I loved it. Immediately, I thought ‘I want to do that when I get older’.”
Classical music, music theatre and Broadway are among the genres she likes.
Allison finds herself in a transitional phase in her life, which will see her move from Maple Creek to Saskatoon.
After graduating from Maple Creek Composite School in 2018, she went to McGill University to take a Bachelor of Science degree, majoring in anatomy and biology.
“I liked it for a bit, but I realized it wasn’t for me, so I have taken a new path,” she said.
That path is a musical one.
“Music is what I have always loved. Maybe I can teach a little bit.”
In June, Allison will be doing a Royal Conservatory of Music exam, which will focus, among other things, on her repertoire and ear training.
She plans to continue having lessons with Heather, via Zoom, even when settled in Saskatoon, and tuition with a teacher in North Battleford.
Of course, she also has another important engagement next month: the provincials.
As well as singing, it will involve a 20-minute speech arts performance, including poems and prose.
It will be a lot to remember, but the prospect doesn’t faze her.
After all, even at such a young age, she is already a seasoned performer.

FINALE PROGRAM/AWARD WINNERS

Here are the winners of awards announced at the Maple Creek & District Music Festival finale on Friday evening. Also included are names of pieces performed during the finale.

LAWRENCE SUBA  
Death of Titanic, by Lawrence Suba
Cypress Motors Primary Piano Scholarship of $25
T-R. FREEMAN
Detectives, by Christine Donkin
Cypress Motors Primary Piano Scholarship of $25
KINLEY PRATT
No Worries, by Elissa Milne
Cypress Motors Elementary Piano Scholarship of $25
LETICIA HOPE 
Sunset in Rio, by Mike Springer
• Cypress Motors Elementary Piano Scholarship of $25
• Binkley’s Funeral Service (M.C.) Ltd Open Piano Scholarship of $50
ANNA FLETT  
Waltz, by Kosenko
• Cobble Creek Lodge Ltd Intermediate Piano Scholarship of $75
• Royal Canadian Legion Branch 75 Piano Award: plaque and $100 for excellence in solo piano
DANIKA HOPE
Swingin’ Low, by Janet Gieck
Cobble Creek Lodge Ltd Intermediate Piano Scholarship of $75
SMFA Centennial Legacy Scholarship of $100, for excellence in a performance of a work by a Saskatchewan composer or author
LESLEY LEVORSON  
Prairie Boy, by Morris Surdin and W.O. Mitchell
• Bowie’s Ltd Intermediate Voice Scholarship of $75
• SMFA Centennial Legacy Scholarship in Voice $100 for excellence in a performance of a work by a Saskatchewan composer or author
ALLISON GORDON
“Marjorie” from Jewel, by Joan MacLeod
• Stark & Marsh CPA LLP Spoken Word Senior Scholarship of $100
• Doris Bircham Memorial Speech Arts and Drama Award donated by Irene Ahner: Plaque plus $100 for excellence in Speech Arts and Drama
CADENCE PRATT
“Polite Children” by Allen Ahlberg
Stark & Marsh CPA LLP Primary Spoken Word Scholarship of $25
LAWRENCE SUBA   
“God Lives in Saskatchewan”, by Cathy Jewison
Stark & Marsh CPA LLP Primary Spoken Word Scholarship of $25
IVY PARKER (not present at finale)
Binkley’s Funeral Service (M.C.) Ltd Open Speech Arts and Drama Scholarship of $50
KINLEY PRATT
“The Execution”, by Alden Nowlan
Binkley’s Funeral Service (M.C.) Ltd Elementary Spoken Word Scholarship of $25
LESLEY LEVORSON
Burn from Hamilton: An American Musical, 
by Lin-Manuel Miranda
Royal Canadian Legion Branch 75 Musical Theatre Award: Plaque plus $100 for excellence in Musical Theatre
ALLISON GORDON
Si Mes Vers, by Reynaldo Hahn and Victor Hugo
• Binkley’s Funeral Service (M.C.) Ltd Senior Voice Scholarship of $100
• Royal Canadian Legion Branch 75 Vocal Award: Plaque plus $100 for excellence in singing
• Maple Creek and District Music Festival Outstanding Performance Trophy

GOING TO SASKATOON 

These three performers are now eligible to compete at the Provincial Finals in Saskatoon, June 2-5:

Kinley Pratt, provincial scholarship class #39, piano recital (12 years and under);
Kinley Pratt, provincial scholarship class #78, spoken word poetry, (12 years and under);

Lesley Levorson, provincial scholarship class #15, vocal, soprano (17 years and under);
Lesley Levorson, provincial scholarship class #18, vocal concert group (17 years and under);
Lesley Levorson, provincial scholarship class #62, musical theatre ballad contemporary (17 years and under);
Lesley Levorson, provincial scholarship class #61, musical theatre ballad classic/modern (17 years and under);

Allison Gordon, provincial scholarship #6, vocal solo, grade B (28 years and under);
Allison Gordon, provincial scholarship #9, vocal French art song (28 years and under);
Allison Gordon, provincial scholarship class #73, spoken word concert group (28 years and under);
Allison Gordon, Canada West excellence speech arts (24 years and under).

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