The vocal and choral adjudicator for this year’s Kiwanis Battlefords Music Festival is Prince Albert-born Chris Kelly. He began his piano studies with Janet Wendland and was a member of the Prince Albert Boys Choir under the direction of Margo Fournier, eventually serving as their accompanist and director of junior choirs. Chris entered the Department of Music at the University of Saskatchewan as a piano performance major and voice minor. He studied voice with Dorothy Howard, was a member of Greystone Singers, and convocated with a double major, completing performance and academic requirements in both voice and piano. In 1996 Chris received his Master of Music in Vocal Performance from the University of Western Ontario, where he studied under Alvin Reimer.
Chris has been a sessional lecturer in the University of Saskatchewan’s Department of Music, teaching voice and serving as an accompanist. He has also taught keyboard skills and musicianship. He maintains a private voice and piano studio and performs regularly in recital, opera, and oratorio. Chris has also instructed music theatre classes and accompanied at Saskatoon dance studios. Chris has performed as guest soloist with the Saskatoon and Regina Symphonies in Handel’s Messiah and Verdi’s Requiem and in the U of S University Chorus’ performances of Haydn’s Creation, Mozart’s Requiem, Faure’s Requiem, Saint Saëns’ Christmas Oratorio, Bruckner’s Te Deum and Vaughan Williams’ Fantasia on Christmas Carols. He has also had numerous leads, chorus and accompanying roles with Saskatoon Opera. In addition to teaching, Chris accompanies singers and instrumentalists, coaches, adjudicates, and is a church organist and choir director. He and his wife, Paula, have two sons – Graham and William. Chris is a member of the Saskatchewan and Canadian Registered Music Teachers Associations.
This year’s festival dates are March 24 - April 5. Volunteers are always welcome. If you have any interest in offering support, please do not hesitate to contact a committee member as ways to help come in all sizes and shapes. If your time is not available but you or your business would like to support the festival monetarily, consider sponsoring an award to be presented at the final gala event, or sponsoring a session for a music discipline of your choice, or being recognized as a patron or friend of the festival. Don’t be shy!
“Sing, then. Sing, indeed, with shoulders back, and head up so that song might go to the roof and beyond to the sky. Mass on mass of tone, with a hard edge, and rich with quality, every single note a carpet of colour woven from basso profundo, and basso, and baritone, and alto, and tenor, and soprano, and also mezzo, and contralto, singing and singing, until life and all things living are become a song. O, Voice of Man, organ of most lovely might.”
― Richard Llewellyn, How Green Was My Valley