Alvin Brendan earned the Fort Langley Jazz Festival’s Rising Star Award for 2020. (Alvin Brendan/Special to the Langley Advance Times)

Fort Langley festival looks for rising musical star for summer performance

Musicians within Metro Vancouver have until March 31 to apply for the Rising Star award

The Fort Langley Jazz & Arts Festival is hoping to find the community’s next rising musical star.

An up-and-coming jazz musician will once again be featured as the festival’s Rising Star award winner at the annual festival planned for July 2021.

Festival organizers established the annual award in 2019 “to recognize an outstanding jazz student who demonstrates a high level of performance ability and is pursuing a professional career in jazz music.”

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The calibre of submissions for the past two awards have been outstanding, Dave Quinn, artistic director for the festival, said.

“One of our key mandates is to support youth and emerging artists and the award is a wonderful opportunity for an up and coming jazz student to perform with and be mentored by established artists, while also receiving financial support for their education,” Quinn said.

Award submissions are open to all secondary and post-secondary music students from the Metro Vancouver area until March 31 on the festival website. The website also has information on the festival’s 50/50 fundraiser.

The Rising Star award winner will be given an opportunity to perform in a featured performance at the 2021 festival. The winner will also receive a scholarship of $1,000.

Last year’s Rising Star, Alvin Brendan, is a recent graduate of the music program at Capilano University, and said the recognition “is a huge honour.”

“I am very grateful to be given the chance to perform my art and see my name next to many of my local idols that shaped who I am as a musician,” Brendan noted.

For 2021, organizers are planning a hybrid festival featuring in-person intimate events and pre-recorded and live-streamed concerts.

“We are committed to continuing to provide opportunities for jazz musicians to connect with new and existing audiences, to provide jazz fans with world-class talent, to innovate and adapt, and to provide opportunities to support young and emerging jazz artists,” said Quinn.

“Although we have a few uncertain months ahead of use, we are working on several creative and exciting plans to ensure the music returns for the 2021 Fort Langley Jazz & Arts Festival.”

• READ MORE: Langley jazz enthusiasts stroll around town Mardi Gras style

Established in 2018, the Fort Langley Jazz & Arts Festival is a not-for-profit organization whose mandate is to enrich cultural life in the Fraser Valley by bringing emerging and established jazz acts and visual artists to Fort Langley for all to enjoy. The annual festival, held over the last weekend of July, draws thousands of residents and visitors to the streets of the community.

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