Hundreds of talented young musicians have once again registered for the Estevan and District Music Festival.
This year's festival will begin Wednesday, March 6, with the band and instrumentals portion. Most of the sessions will take place at the Estevan Comprehensive School, but Bienfait Weldon School, St. Mary's School and Spruce Ridge School will also be utilized.
Band and instrumentals will be finished on March 8.
The vocal divisions will begin on March 10 at St. Paul's United Church. The vocal sessions will be mixed with speech arts, and they will wrap up on March 13.
"Dates to take note of are Monday, March 11 and Tuesday, March 12, in the evening, as those are our musical theatre nights, which are always entertaining to the public," said music festival past president Anita Kuntz.
New for this year will be a half-day of French speech arts entries from Sacred Heart School/École Sacre Coeur.
Piano will begin on Monday, March 18. Junior piano, for students 11 years of age and younger, will run on March 18 and 19, and part of March 20. Senior piano will be on the 20th, 21st and 22nd.
The annual festival highlights and awards program will take place on Tuesday, March 26 at the Estevan Comprehensive School.
Four excellent adjudicators have been lined up for this year, Kuntz said.
Kuntz said that entries are down this year, and she attributed the decline to an earlier start for the festival so that it can be completed prior to the Easter break. There are 644 musicians registered, compared with 696 in 2012. But she still expects it's going to be a great festival, with a lot of talent on display.
Programs for the festival are available for purchase at several locations around the city. The schedule for the festival is expected to be on the Saskatchewan Music Festivals Association's website before the festival begins.