Virtual Festival 2021

Frequently Asked Questions

1. How do I submit my recording(s) and scores, and when are they due? 
Each performance should be recorded separately and uploaded to your YouTube channel as an "Unlisted" video. Videos should be labelled as followed: in the "Title" section, please list Piece/Composer and your Name! In the "Description" section, please list the Class # and Name of class (ie Vocal Solo - Classical - 16 and Under). Each YouTube link should be submitted to me, along with a PDF of your score. Playlists will then be created of the entries in each class, which will be shared wih the class participants and the adjudicator. 

Scores in PDF format should be submitted at the time of submitting the recording link. The PDF should include a) the cover of your music, and b) if in Public Domain, the proof of this, and c) if purchased online, the receipt. You can easily use an app such as FreeScan to take photos of each page of your music with your phone and then convert to multi-page PDF.

*EDIT - AMFA has asked that Provincial recommendees have the closed book in view in their recordings. If you have already recorded (as of January 25) please email me directly. 

When recording, please ensure that the performer's entire body is in the frame from head to toe. The camera must be oriented horizontally, even if using a phone. Placing your camera at least 6-8' away from the performer will give you the best sound quality as well. It goes without saying, that videos must be unedited!

For entries that have more than one selection performed in the class (ie Concert/Recital classes, Chamber, or AB Excellence classes), you must record all (both) selections back to back without stopping the camera in between. You may take as much time as you need between pieces, to tune, change costume, etc, but do not stop the camera running. 

When you're ready, send both your unlisted YouTube link, along with the PDF of your score, to

2. Do I have to submit the first take? 
You do not have to use the first recording you get - however, recording multiple takes can be draining and we don't recommend going overboard. Set a limit for yourself, realizing that no recording is ever going to be perfect and the adjudicators realize that! We suggest doing no more than three takes, and choosing the one you like the best from those. Our adjudicators are fully aware of the challenges you are facing and will not be expecting perfection, but looking for overall qualities such as technique, musicality, interpretation. Please see the above note about classes that contain more than one selection - these must be done in the same recording. 

3. When do I have to get my recording in to you by? 
One of the perks about an online festival (we must find these silver lining!) is that you can record when you are ready and submit anytime between now and March 1- March 5! Deadlines vary across the disciplines (dependent on when the adjudication sessions are), posted below.Please don't wait until the last minute as all of these online playlists have to be created in advance, so if you're ready sooner than later, that is very helpful to me!

Deadlines are:
Intermediate and Senior Vocal - March 1
Speech Arts - March 2
Junior Piano - March 2
Musical Theatre - March 3
Strings - March 5
Guitar - March 5
Chamber - March 5
Senior Piano - March 5
Brass/WW - March 5

4. Do I need special equipment? 
No! A smartphone will even work! There are things you can do to make your recording the best it can be - use a tripod or steady surface for your camera; dress up just like you would for festival; place the camera at a distance of at least 6' away from you; make sure you are in the picture! - but you do not need to purchase extra equipment such as microphones or fancy cameras. Again, our adjudicators are well aware of limitations in these situations and will not be looking for "professional" level recordings. Just remember - your ENTIRE BODY head to toe, MUST be visible within the horizontal frame of the camera. 

5. Can I watch my friends and peers' performances? 
Yes! In normal festival years, you'll remember that you performed in a class with 5-6 others in a one hour block. These 'blocks" are going to be recreated as onine sessions. A playlist will be created for each of these sessions and you will have the chance to view your peers in the same session. Do not share these links with others - they are only for the adjudicator and your class, but we encourage you to leave positive feedback for your peers because that is one of the things we'll miss most this year! 

6. How will adjudications work?
Each performance will receive a written adjudication, which will be the notes that the adjudicator takes while viewing your performance. These adjudication sheets will be sent to me, and I will distribute them to your teachers upon receipt. For the verbal portion of the adjudications, which is the last part of class in which the adjudicator talks to the performers in each session, we will be setting up live zoom sessions for each session. This will be the time in which the adjudicator will speak to you directly about your performance, along with the others in your session! You can find the rough (tentative) schedule by going to the "Festival At A Glance" tab under "Festival 2021" above. We are planning to schedule these zoom sessions between 3-6 pm so that you won't have to miss classes! We hope to have more seniors as well this year, as they can compete virtually! 

7. Can I still receive an award? 
Our Award Sponsors are still with us and eager to help you get through these terrible times. They know, as do we, that continuing to make music in these circumstances will help you, and all of us (!), and they are committed to doing their part to encourage you! Awards will still be given out in every discipline and age category! 

8. Is there still going to be a Rose Bowl?
Absolutely! The Adjudicator from each discipline will be able to recommend a performer to the Rose Bowl that they consider to be the "best" from that discipline. (You can read more about these recommendations on our "Local Policy" page under the Home Tab). The Rose Bowl will be Live Streamed from St. Barnabas Anglican Church, at this point, with only performers and staff present. However, as restrictions lift, we will adjust with them and hope to be able to have a live, if limited audience present. 

9. What about Stars of the Festival?
One of the sadnesses of Festival 2020 was the last minute cancellation of Stars. The performers that had been selected to perform never got that chance, and awards were handed out efficiently if somewhat anticlimactically! With that  in mind, we'd already planned for this years' Stars of the Festival to be Virtual. The way it's going to work is: if you're receiving an award, you'll be notified of what time to present yourself at St. Barnabas Anglican Church to collect it. You'll pick up your award, then you'll pose for a photo op (we're going to set up an awesome photo set for you!) with the Rotary President and our Rotary Festival Chairman! Your parents can be in the photo too! Then you'll go home and set up the TV/laptop, make yourself some popcorn, and watch the Stars of the Festival in a virtual format on our Facebook Page. The special performances that you'll see in this concert will be ones that stood out to staff and adjudicators from all the performances over the two weeks. If you're receiving an award, your name will be announced just like we did in 'normal' days, and we'll have those special 10 performances for an enjoyable evening! At the end of the concert, the Rose Bowl winner will be announced!

10. What about Provincials?
Back this summer already, AMFA made the decision to hold the Provincials Festival in a virtual format. This was something they could put their energy into planning, rather than waiting to see what would happen. With things in Edmonton at a high risk level, and many venues closed completely, this proved to be a good decision espeically as we've watched things worsen in Alberta. Performers recommended to the Provincial Festival from all of the local festivals, will submit their performance via a YouTube Link and receive both written and verbal adjudication. Performers recommended from each local fesival will have 10 days in which to submit - to me - the recording they wish to use and their PDF scores. You can use the same video that you used for our local festival, or use the week to record a new performance of the same piece. All Provincial entries must be performed from memory with the exception of Chamber, and String & Keyboard Sonata classes.