Calgary’s GlobalFest will celebrate Canada’s 150th anniversary this summer with spectacular fireworks displays from across the country. It is the first time the festival, which celebrates diversity, has had a distinctly Canadian focus.
“We thought with… everybody celebrating and the fact that 2017 is also our 15th anniversary, we needed to make it a big year,” festival producer Ken Goosen told News Talk 770.
This year, GlobalFest will feature teams from British Columbia to Alberta and east to Ontario, Quebec and Nova Scotia.
Specifics will be announced in April.
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Goosen said Friday the teams have been told that 25 per cent of the music chosen must be from the region they are representing.
“So, we are going to be celebrating all kinds of amazing Canadian music,” he said.
“We want it to still have the flavour of where they’re from, so that what they bring to GlobalFest – and what they bring to Calgary – is unique from anything that they would do anywhere else.”
Goosen said the final eight minutes of this year’s finale on the TD main stage will feature an orchestra, singers, soloists and 150 pipers.
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“I’m getting goosebumps even talking about it, because it is such an amazing experience to have fireworks choreographed to live performance musicians,” Goosen said.
Goosen describes the second piece as “Olympic” and “Canadianesque.”
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The finale music, along with another mandatory piece to be played by the individual teams, will be composed by Donovan Seidle, the associate concert master for the Calgary Philharmonic Orchestra.
“[It has] themes from Canada’s centennial… and from the Olympics, when they were here, and all things Canadiana. So, there will be some indigenous voices and music and some fiddling. It’s a really high energy piece.”
Goosen said the 2017 festival at Elliston Park will be bigger and better than last year. The city has freed up more space within the park, allowing organizers to bring on new vendors. Organizers have also contacted citizenship and immigration about expanding the citizenship ceremony on festival grounds to include 150 people.
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The festival runs from Aug. 15 to Aug. 26 at Elliston Park.