Brendon Catalono, a former student of Medicine Hat College’s (MHC) Conservatory of Music and Dance took home first place for the provincial/national woodwind class at the Saskatchewan Music Festival this past weekend. He will now compete in nationals at the Canadian National Music Festival this August, in Kelowna, British Columbia.
The Saskatchewan Music Festival is an annual event in which district winners compete for scholarships, awards and the honour of representing their province at a national level of competition.
“I started with Brendon when he was seven years old, we’ve had a long and close relationship and it’s so rewarding to see him really shine,” said Lyle Rebbeck, instructor at the conservatory. “He is one of the few people that not only has the ability, and has done the hard work, but is also a really good performer. He can stand on stage, plant his feet and really play to his full potential.”
Catalono attended the conservatory for 12 years where he started playing the recorder, moved onto the curved soprano saxophone- a very rare instrument- and eventually transitioned to the alto saxophone. He is the second former student of Rebbeck’s to move onto nationals this year. Megan Bauman won first place for the provincial/national woodwind class at the Alberta Music Festival in May 2014.
“These two are an example of the quality of work that has gone on at the conservatory for many years. (These festivals) are huge motivators for these young people and help to reaffirm that the work they are doing and the direction they are going is on track,” said Rebbeck. “Of course we are very happy for them and very proud of their accomplishments.”
To learn more about the programming offered through MHC’s Conservatory of Music and Dance visit www.mhc.ab.ca.
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