Lacombe Express File Photo

Lacombe and District Performing Arts Festival recieves $10,000 from City of Lacombe

Grant will allow majority of performances to be at the LMC

The Lacombe and District Performing Arts Festival, entering into it’s 38th year, received a big boost when the City of Lacombe approved a grant for $10,000, which will allow the majority of the Festival to take place in the Lacombe Memorial Centre.

Previously the Festival had a deal that allowed the City to make use of the Festival’s grand piano at the LMC.

“That was worth around $3,000, which was used for a seven-day use of the County room in the new LMC,” Craig Colegrave, organizer, said. “That was the part grandfathered in as compensation for them using our grand piano.

“We have always had that and that wasn’t in jeopardy whatsoever. We were trying to get another additional $14,000 to use the LMC for the maximum possible competitors that we could.”

Despite not receiving the full requested amount, Colegrave said the $10,000 — $7,000 additional — is a win for Lacombe

“I think it shows the wisdom of the Council to recognize the need for this in Lacombe. I am delighted,” he said.

The extra funds will allow the festival to house roughly 60 per cent of their performances in the LMC, meaning competitors, families and audiences will not have to move around to eight to 10 different venues like they previously had to.

Colegrave, as a parent of a performer, knows what it is like to move around from venue to venue.

”He actually performed in 18 events last year and it is an unbelievable logistic nightmare getting him shuffled from one event to another. It is not only tough for the competitors — it is also really tough for audience members because they have to move half way around town to find avenue.

“If we are in one spot, all of that goes away and the LMC is such a brilliant venue as far as access for grandparents who want to see their grandson or granddaughter perform. It has all the access we need for any persons with disabilities or any persons with movement concerns.”

Additionally, the LMC will allow for 800 performers that the Festival was unable to accommodate due to space issues.

“They are the large ensembles and they need a lot of space, for instance dance requires a dance floor that is 30 feet by 60 feet,” Colegrave said. “Where do you get that in Lacombe? One place — the LMC. Our priority when we pack in as many people as we can will be to get all of those large ensembles entertained first.

“We have never been able to accommodate them, so that is a tremendous win for the arts community and the performing arts community in particular.”

Council did request that organizers consider raising their competitor entrance fees, which start at around $17 per soloist — which is around the industry standard according to Colegrave

“We did actually raise the fees last year by a minor $2 and we saw approximately a 15 per cent decrease in our rate of entry,” he said. “Just because you saw a decrease, you can’t necessarily tie it to $2 fee but it is indicative in a way.

“We are are the limit of the industry standard and there has been many festivals that have tried to increase above that and have failed miserably at it.”

Councillor Jonathan Jacobson suggested that a raise in fees could be done as a one-year pilot project, something Colegrave thought may work considering that performers will now be able to perform in premium venue like the LMC.

”They may be able to tolerate a small increase, but what we don’t want to do is increase fees and have some child who is right on the edge of financially affording this or not, not be able to because we raised it up,” he said

“I think Councillor Jacobson’s recommendation of a trial of it is very worthwhile. We can see what the numbers are and come back.”

He added the fees per performance may seem minor, but additional costs like lessons, instruments, accompanists and other costs add up for families over time.

Just Posted

Lacombe’s Chairs for Charity is back for second year

75 chairs to be auctioned off in hopes of raising $10,000

Community mourns the deaths of two Maskwacis toddlers

Siblings found drowned on family’s property

Highlights of the Lacombe County council meeting – July 11, 2019

Next Regular Council Meeting is Thursday August 8

Lacombe Police investigate hit and run

LPS discover abandoned Mercedes SUV with front-end damage

Paws and Claws helps animals at Lacombe ATB

Adoption event helps find forever homes for rescue dogs, cats

WATCH: Lacombe AUPE members picket against Bill 9

Union members say their constitutional rights have been ignored

Wetaskiwin RCMP investigate indecent act at By The Lake Park

Complaint said man exposed himself in Wetaskiwin

$900M settlement reached in class action on sexual misconduct in Canadian military

After facing criticism, the government moved to begin settlement proceedings in early 2018

Chiefs honour Indigenous leader wrongfully hanged in B.C. 154 years ago today

Chief Joe Alphonse says they want his remains returned to his homeland in B.C.’s Cariboo region

Wetaskiwin RCMP investigate attempted armed robbery

Police seek information about alleged attack and identify suspect

Scrapie, a disease related to mad cow, found in two flocks of sheep in Alberta

Health Canada says there is no known link between scrapie and human health

Alberta oil and gas producer cleanup cost estimates set too low, says coalition

Canadian Natural Resources Ltd. facing the largest bill at $11.9 billion to clean up 73,000 wells

Scheer on Trump: It’s ‘offensive’ to question the family background of critics

Trump is being called a racist for saying that the four congresswomen should go back where they came from

Instagram expands Canadian pilot removing ‘like’ counts to more countries

Social media giant plans to roll out the test in Australia, New Zealand, Brazil, Japan, Italy and Ireland

Most Read