Christopher Weddell, Kamloops BC


Breanne Rourke, Niagra ON


Dennis Colpitts, Kelowna BC

Dr. Benjamin Ewert is a conductor, singer and church musician from Vancouver, BC. As a choral educator and clinician, he has worked with children’s, youth and adult choirs across BC, Alberta and the UK. He has founded choirs (Borealis Choir and Oculus Chamber Choir) for young singers that introduce them to the musical and vocal benefits of early music paired with contemporary repertoire. Dr Ewert enjoys working with emerging composers to produce innovative concert events such as Politicoro, a performance of Canadian composers' choral settings of politicians’ public statements. He has presented his research on the interplay of different media in choral music at The Singing Network’s International Symposium of Singing and Song and the London School of Theology’s Sounds of Heaven and Earth Conference. He holds a DMus in Choral Conducting from the University of Alberta and an MMus in Choral Studies from the University of Cambridge. As a bass-baritone, he has performed as a part of Pro Coro Canada (Edmonton) and Vox Cantab (Cambridge, UK). Dr Ewert currently works as the Minister of Worship at First Baptist Church, Vancouver, and lives in East Van with his wife, Krista, their three children and intrepid dog, Lord Byron.

Brass & Woodwinds

Ballet, Modern & Contemporary, Jazz & Lyrical, Tap, Acro, Hip Hop, Musical Theatre

Violinist Elation Pauls makes a significant contribution to the rich fabric that makes up Canada’s classical music scene from the heart of Canada, Winnipeg Manitoba. In constant demand for her lush sound and expressive solo and chamber music performances with such presenters as the Winnipeg Chamber Music Society, Brandon University Pro Series, Agassiz Festival, Virtuosi Concerts and Rosamunde Festival, her playing and innovative programming has been praised as transformational. In the fall of 2019, she collaborated with Polycoro Chamber Choir, performing Bach’s Chaconne where “She played with heart and soul, her violin carrying us into another realm with the singers’ chorales…deeply moving.” (Holly Harris, WFP) She has premiered many works and has collaborated as chamber musician with artists such as Mark Fewer, Andrew Wan, Martin Beaver, Yosuke Kawasaki, Paul Marleyn, David Harding, Erika Raum, Martin Roscoe and Matt Haimovitz.  

Since 2013 Pauls has served as Assistant Principal Violin II with the Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra. She has performed in many of the major concert halls of North America and Europe, including Carnegie Hall (NY), Jordan Hall (Boston), Herbst Theatre (San Francisco), the Concertgebouw (Amsterdam), Leiszhalle (Hamburg) and at the Philharmonie (Berlin). As well as playing in the Kammerphilharmonie Berlin-Brandenburg, Windsor Symphony Orchestra, Hamilton Philharmonic, and the Hamburger Symphoniker directed by Andrey Boreyko and Jeffrey Tate, she has performed as a soloist with the Neinstedt Chamber Players (Germany), Spiritosi Strings, Banff Festival Chamber Orchestra, Rosamunde Festival Orchestra and the Mooredale Concerto Players in Toronto.  

As Co-Founder and Artistic Director of the Rosamunde Summer Music Academy and Festival, Ms. Pauls enjoys bringing international caliber mentoring and artistry to Winnipeg every August. She has served as adjudicator for numerous festivals, as sessional instructor at Canadian Mennonite University and maintains an active private teaching studio. She is a prizewinner of the Canadian Music Competition, Saskatchewan Concerto Competition and Toronto Kiwanis Music Festival and has received scholarships from the Yehudi Menuhin LIVE Music Now foundation, Deutsche Akademische Austauschdienst (DAAD) and University of Toronto. Following studies with Lorand Fenyves at the University of Toronto where she received her Bachelor and Master of Music degrees, she obtained the highly sought-after Solo Performance (Konzertexamen) degree from the Hochschule für Musik und Theater in Rostock, Germany. 


Michael Perkins, Coldstream BC

Eva Tavares is a Vancouver/Shuswap based director, singer, dancer, and coach. Most recently starring as Christine Daae in the Broadway Tour of Phantom of the Opera, Tavares is a graduate of UBC Opera, the LAMDA Shakespeare Short Course, and the Banff/Citadel Theatre Professional Training Program. Previous performance credits include: Marta in Kiss of the Spider Woman, Anne in A Little Night Music, and the world premiere of Sousatzka starring Victoria Clark. With fifteen years of dance training and thirteen years in the professional performance world, Tavares is active in the dance community as a choreographer, most recently choreographing Die Fledermaus for Vancouver Opera. When the pandemic shut down live performance, Tavares began investing in her new found love of TV/film as an actor and director, appearing on Disney+(Turner&Hooch), the CW channel (Legends Of Tomorrow), Lifetime (Single and Ready to Jingle), Paramount+ (Rise Of The Pink Ladies), and many other networks. When she’s not performing or directing, Tavares continues to work as a coach and mentor across North America and the UK. She runs Behind the Mask Masterclass alongside Jennifer Andersen, guiding participants to their most authentic selves within their musical and physical storytelling.

Speech Arts

Ben Ewart, Vancouver BC

Blake Palm is a born and raised Pentictonite.  He has always had an immense passion for music and the performing arts. After taking classical piano lessons for 7 years, Blake fell in love with the upright bass, and began playing it in his middle school bands when he was 12 years old.  Following his high school years, Blake followed his love for music and studied Jazz bass with Jodi Proznick at Capilano University Jazz Studies Program in North Vancouver.  During his time there, Blake discovered another affection for orchestral music.  Blake went on to earn a Bachelor of Music, and Bachelor of Education playing orchestral bass at the University of Victoria School of Music. Blake began playing with in the UVIC Orchestra, Big Band, Vocal Jazz Ensemble, Victoria Chamber Orchestra, as well as playing his own freelancing Jazz quartet. Blake also toured across Canada with singer/songwriter Scott Shea, playing bass and backup vocals in Shea's folk-roots trio, including Adam Dobres on lead guitar.  In 2015,  Blake accompanied the trio opening up for the Carol King Musical on Central Stage, in Central Park, New York City. Since 2019, Blake has been working in Penticton as the Music Teacher at KVR Middle School of a robust band program of almost 200 students ranging from grade 6, 7 and 8. He also works in the valley as a freelancing bassist, accompanying the Okanagan Symphony Orchestra, Kamloops Symphony Orchestra, Prince George Symphony Orchestra, and various other local musicians and artists.

We are happy to announce our Adjudicators & Instructors for the 2023 Season! Please welcome:

Bob Rogers, Vernon BC

Ina Dykstra, Victoria BC

Juilia is a Vancouver based dancer, performer, educator and choreographer. In her youth she trained extensively and competitively in multiple disciplines where her love for dance took her into a successful professional career in the dance and theatre industry around the world. Juilia's professional experience and credits include: Tokyo Disneyland "One Man's Dream II", multiple contracts with Disney Cruise Line in over 8 different stage shows as a featured dancer (including being selected to be part of the Disney Magic Re-Imagined reopening cast), My Fair Lady (RCMT), 2010 Vancouver Paralympic Opening Ceremonies, Salagia: 7 Gifts for Clara ( Dansarts + Collabart Creations).

 Film/ TV networks and credits as a stunt double/dancer include: ABC, Netflix, Hallmark, Destination America and The Disney Channel.

She is currently a co-director, choreographer and dancer at City Entertainment Company which has been running for 12 years. Her experience expands to the other side of the audition table where she has been a casting directors assistant for Disney Cruise Line and Royal Caribbean Cruise Line. When she is not performing, she has spent 10 years choreographing and teaching students of all ages sharing her passion for the arts. Teaching students in all environments including competitive, recreational to workshops. She brings her passion, knowledge and love of dance to all of her students and competition attendees. Her ambition to help dancers reach their fullest potential in a positive and motivating manner. 

Ms. Ina Dykstra received her Bachelor of Music in Piano Performance at the University of Alberta, where she studied with Dr. Ernesto Lejano, Dr. Helmut Brauss, and Isobel Rolston. She also went on to complete Graduate Degree courses in Art Song, Collaborative Piano, Chamber Music, and Solo Performance.
​Ms. Dykstra holds a degree in Music Therapy from Capilano College in Vancouver, and has worked with a wide variety of students of all ages and all abilities, from the very gifted to those with various special needs.
She is also a composer, and has written many solo piano works at all levels. She and musician/composer Jan Randall (Ina’s husband) have created a website:, which features the “Let’s Play” series of books (Levels 1-9), as well as more advanced piano solos for all ages. Ina’s piece “Leafy Sea Dragon’ is feature in the 2022 Level 7 Etudes book with the Royal Conservatory of music.
​Ina has given workshops and Master Classes for teachers and students across the prairie provinces on a variety of topics which include: Duet/Duo-Piano music, Canadian compositions, Introduction to Student Composition, and Piano Teaching: Where do we begin? She has also most recently been active at “Summer Sizzle”, a young composers’ music camp created by the Canadian National Conservatory of Music. Ina is also a member of the College of Examiners with the Royal Conservatory of Music.
​Ms. Dykstra has a deep commitment to furthering musical education, creativity, and artistry.  After a long and rewarding career in St. Albert, Alberta, she now lives in Victoria, BC, and has over 45 years of experience as an accompanist, performer, clinician, examiner, adjudicator, composer and inspiring teacher.

A native of Prince Albert, Kathleen Lohrenz Gable began her early studies with Lyell Gustin in Saskatoon, taking the train and later driving in for her weekly lessons. Kathy went on to receive her Bachelor of Music from Wilfrid Laurier University; a Diploma in Lieder from the Franz Schubert Institute in Austria; her Fellowship from Trinity College in London; and her Master of Music in Accompanying and Chamber Music from the University of Michigan. Kathy taught Piano and Piano Pedagogy at the University of Michigan and was a piano instructor at the famous Interlochen National Music Camp in Michigan. She has also taught for Wilfrid Laurier University, the University of Windsor. Currently, Kathy is a sessional instructor, teaching piano, and the Music Director for the Music Theatre Ensemble at the University of Saskatchewan. Kathy has dedicated herself tirelessly to working with pianists and singers, both soloistically and collaboratively. Since moving to Saskatchewan in 1994 she has worked with many opera companies and training programs for young artists, including Opera Nuova, Calgary Opera, Saskatoon Opera, Saskatoon Symphony, and Vancouver Summer Opera Study program. Kathy joined the faculty of Edmonton’s Opera Nuova in 2004 as a teacher and music director, and since 1997, Kathy has collaborated with eight of the Western Young Artist winners for a recital tour of Manitoba and Saskatchewan cities. Alongside her husband, bass-baritone Garry Gable, Kathy has been invited to perform and to teach at various universities and conservatories in China four separate times since 2008. Kathy was an official pianist for the World Saxophone conference in Bangkok in 2009, and was one of the judges for the National Piano Competition at the CFMTA convention in 2011, where she also performed, lead workshops, and gave master classes. She has adjudicated national, provincial and local music festivals across Canada and in the United States.

Kathleen Gable, Saskatoon SK

Juilia Bazso, Vancouver BC

Dennis Colpitts, a graduate from the Department of Music (UBC, 1976), has taught music in the Lower Mainland and Okanagan at all levels of the school system. His blended major of trumpet, voice and conducting have enabled him to participate in a wide variety of musical opportunities including the Vancouver Cantata Singers, Phoenix, a Chamber Choir, the Okanagan Festival Singers, the Kamloops Symphony Orchestra and the Okanagan Symphony Orchestra. He conducted the Kelowna City Concert Band from 1992 to 2000 and 2011 to 2020, and led the orchestra of Trinity Baptist Church from 1998 to 2008.
Mr. Colpitts has been second chair in the horn section of the Okanagan Symphony Orchestra since 2000 and plays trumpet in the OSO Brass Quintet (aka Fish On Five) and the Michael Garding Big Band. In 2011 Mr. Colpitts retired from 34 years of teaching and began a busy life as a Teacher On call and a volunteer working with brass students in the schools. He also conducts the OSO Wind Ensemble for the UBC Okanagan's convocation ceremonies each year, co-conducts the Okanagan Symphony Youth Orchestra with Rosemary Thomson and has been a guest conductor of the Okanagan Symphony Orchestra for concerts including Michael Burgess, Natalie McMaster, the grand opening of the Sparkling Hill Resort and the OSO Christmas program in 2015. 
Mr. Colpitts has played the Last Post since 1994 for Kelowna's Remembrance Day Ceremony and since 2001 has played on an authentic World War I bugle.

Eva Tavares, Vancouver BC

Concert Band


Breanne Rourke is a professional voice teacher located in Niagara Ontario. She is an accomplished singer/songwriter, and has a passion for cross-training in diverse musical genres including pop, classical, opera, jazz, and broadway. She obtained her Bachelor of Music in Voice Performance (Honours) from Western University. Breanne is an RCM Certified teacher, and is also a member of SECO (The SpeakEasy Cooperative for Independent Voice Teachers), ORMTA (Ontario Registered Music Teachers' Association) and NATS (National Association of Teachers of Singing). With over 12 years of teaching experience under her belt, Breanne’s students have been accepted to University and College music programs throughout Ontario, have completed RCM exams with Honours, and have been featured on popular TV shows such as ‘The Next Star,’ and ‘Canada’s Got Talent.’ She also teaches and coaches professional singers worldwide as they up-level their vocal abilities! In 2022 she created The Honest Voice Co., a multi-teacher voice studio that specializes in contemporary and classical styles. 

An avid performer, Breanne loves gigging and has been performing for 20 years. She has been a featured performer at the Bitter End, a popular music venue located in Greenwich Village in NYC, as well as venues throughout Southern Ontario. In 2015, she performed the role of Spirit II in Massenet’s Cendrillon at the Halifax Summer Opera Festival. Her most recent musical theatre role was Ronette in Something Something Productions Little Shop of Horrors in 2016 and again in 2018. She was also a featured soprano soloist with Lyric Niagara throughout their 2015-16 season.

In addition to her love for teaching and performing, Breanne has a passion for music leadership in worship bands. She was the Music Director of Wesley United Church in Welland from 2013-2021 and is currently the Worship + Music Director at St. Andrews United Church in Niagara Falls.

She currently resides in north-end St. Catharines with her husband Kelvin and 2 children. When she’s not teaching or singing her face off, you can find Breanne reading a fast-paced psychological thriller while sipping a glass of full-bodied red wine or engaging in some cardio or strength training – not necessarily in that order.


Chamber Orchestra

​​Kelowna Kiwanis Festival

Born and raised in Vancouver, trombonist and educator Bob Rogers attended Humber College in Toronto before completing a Bachelor of Music Degree at UBC and a Master of Music degree in trombone performance at Northwestern University in Evanston, IL. A versatile performer, Bob played with numerous ensembles in the Vancouver area including the Vancouver Opera, the Victoria Symphony, the Vancouver Jazz Orchestra, and numerous small jazz and chamber ensembles. Bob has also performed or recorded with Natalie Cole, Aerosmith, Charlotte Diamond, the O’Jays and the Temptations, and spent a year touring Europe with a New York production of the Duke Ellington musical Sophisticated Ladies. In 1993 Bob moved to Revelstoke where he taught band and general music to both secondary and elementary students for over 25 years, and since moving to the interior he has been a member of the Okanagan Symphony as well as his own jazz group and numerous other ensembles throughout the Okanagan. In 2020 Bob retired from full time teaching and now lives in Vernon where he is keeping busy as a performer, composer/arranger and clinician.

A graduate of the Playhouse Acting School, Christopher has played on stages in Europe and Canada. Christopher is a founding member and past Artistic Associate of Bard On The Beach. Weddell has written several plays, including the book and lyrics for the upcoming musical version of W. O. Mitchell’s Who Has Seen The Wind. Most recently, Christopher has directed Love and Information and his own adaptation of Gary Geddes poem cycle Falsework at The Canadian College Of Performing Arts. Other directing credits include the Jessie nominated Richard II, Mexico City/Little One (Mad Fox) and Waiting For Godot at Kaspar Theatre, Prague. His new play Sally Go ‘Round The Moon will be staged in 2023. A veteran acting mentor, Christopher has taught acting and Shakespeare workshops in Prague, Lennox, Massachusetts, and all across Canada



Lori Barrett, Christina Lake BC

Elation Pauls, Winnipeg MB

Michael Perkins is a professional classical and jazz trumpeter, composer, clinician, and adjudicator currently from Coldstream, B.C. Michael spent over 40 years as an internationally award-winning music educator with experience in both the public and private school systems in the Okanagan Valley and the Lower Mainland. He is a past coordinator of the Vancouver Kiwanis Jazz Festival, the B.C. Interior Jazz Festival and was involved in founding/directing multiple groups including the original funk band, The Mammals, from Kelowna; the Sea'T'Sky Big Band, in Squamish; the Nicola Valley Brass Quintet, in the Thompson-Okanagan; the Playmor Junction Big Band, in Nelson; and the Night Owl Orchestra, Central Okanagan. As a freelance trumpet/flugelhorn player, clinician and adjudicator, Michael works with the Okanagan Symphony, the Kamloops Symphony, the Michael Garding Big Band, Symphonic Rock Revolution, Perkins/Landsberg Duo, the Legendary Lake Monsters, the Clinton Swanson R&B Band and the Justin Glibbery Quartet. He has also served as Music Director for musical theatre, the 100th Centenary celebration for Kelowna and the BC Summer Games and enjoys every opportunity he gets in the recording studio and has just recently released a new compilation CD, “Michael * Perkins * Reflections”. Michael has performed throughout Europe and North America and has worked with such artists as Cleo Laine/John Dankworth, Holly Cole, Laila Biali, Jann Arden, Mike Murphy, Dee Daniels, Dianne Shuur and the great Greg Yasinitski. Michael’s other passions include downhill skiing, motorcycles, and is discovering his talent for visual art.

Blake Palm, Penticton BC

Classical Voice, Musical Theatre, Popular Voice

Lori Barrett is a seasoned musician and educator originally from St John’s, Newfoundland. Lori has been a bassoonist with the Newfoundland Symphony Orchestra, the PEI Symphony, the Calgary Civic Symphony, Symphony of the Kootenays, and most recently the Okanagan Symphony Orchestra.

 Lori is also a music education specialist with decades of experience teaching elementary music and high school band/musical theatre. Lori recently launched her own music business called Boundless Sounds, which offers private lessons and sound/music therapy. In her “spare time”, Lori serves on the board of the Christina Lake Arts and Artisans Society (C.L.A.A.S.) and loves to spend time with her husband and their two dogs Milo and Stella. Lori is thrilled to be a faculty member of the Grand Forks Performing Arts Summer Camp this year!