VIDEO: First highlights concert offers delightful afternoon of singing and dancing

The Acafellas group from the Cowichan Valley Youth Choir sing O Canada before entertaining the audience with two songs, under the direction of Sheila Hilton Johnson.
Aimee Craig dances to ‘99 Red Balloons’, with choreography by Cat Newcombe.
With Shannon Tyrrell at the piano, Amelia MacIntosh performs ‘Nothing’ from the musical, ‘A Chorus Line’. (Lexi Bainas/Citizen)
The Festival’s Instruments chair, Barbara Stone, presents an award to Mai Ikemura. (Lexi Bainas/Citizen)
It’s clear that ‘No One Says No to Gaston’ in this modern stage number by Nina Seggie and Beth-Rose Trawick.
Hip hop dancers Leif Hokanson and Thomas Waldron perform to ‘Hit It’ at the Festival Highlights Gala on March 3. (Lexi Bainas/Citizen)
In an unexpected addition to the program, Jamieson Wickham enters from the audience and performs the hilarious ‘I Am Aldolfo’ from ‘The Drowsy Chaperone’, with Naomi Barclay at the piano. (Lexi Bainas/Citizen)
Senior-level piano provincial festival representative Jizelle Balae plays Chopin’s Nocturne in D Flat Major, Opus 27, No. 2. (Lexi Bainas/Citizen)
With a golden light illuminating her, ballet dancer Kayla Henry performs to Schubert’s ‘Lament, Impromptu #3, Op. 90’. (Lexi Bainas/Citizen)
With a golden light illuminating her, ballet dancer Kayla Henry performs to Schubert’s ‘Lament, Impromptu #3, Op. 90’. (Lexi Bainas/Citizen)
Kayla Oster really looks the part as she sings the scary ‘Poor Unfortunate Souls’ from ‘The Little Mermaid’. (Lexi Bainas/Citizen)
Longtime music festival stalwart Lesley Sjoberg presents the choir award to the Acafellas’ Cameron Trustham. (Lexi Bainas/Citizen)
Mai Ikemura presents Faure’s Elegy on the stage of the Cowichan Performing Arts Centre.
Dancing to ‘Everybody Mad’, ‘O.T. Genasis’, ‘I Get Money’, and ‘50 Cent’, the Money Hungry hip hop group wow the audience at the festival highlights concert Mar 3.
Concert emcee Shannon Tyrrell is one of the younger volunteers at this year’s festival. (Lexi Bainas/Citizen)
Shaylee Martin sings ‘She’s Like the Swallow’, with accompaniment by Rykie Avenant.

It’s impossible to imagine how many people have been influenced by the celebration of local talent known as the Cowichan Music Festival during its 70 years of existence.

But, it’s plain to see that the beat goes on, with each generation handing the torch to those that follow.

On Sunday, March 3, the Cowichan Performing Arts Centre hosted the first of two Highlights Concerts that wind up the massive annual event.

The second one was scheduled for Wednesday, March 6 at the same venue. An earlier gala recital was also held on Sunday, Feb. 24 at the Duncan United Church.

With every kind of selection, from hip hop to Chopin, from The Messiah to The Little Mermaid, there was truly something for everyone in Sunday’s show.

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