Even now, while tying up the final details of our first competition, everything still feels surreal to look back upon.
The idea of having a marimba competition kept coming up for many years, but it seemed like a pipe dream: we were understaffed and underfunded. Eventually, with a lot of hours and a lot of help, the idea turned into a plan that snowballed past one deadline after another, and we are so proud of everything that was accomplished.
From May 31 to June 2, we saw participants come together from all over the world, united in their passion for marimba. From the highly technical to the deeply emotional, from virtuosic displays to beautiful melodies, the competition truly brought together an amazing weekend of marimba performances. Having been a judge from the audio round to the finals, Beverley Johnston closed the event commenting on how proud she was of the “quality of marimba playing and the amount of differing repertoire.”
Our judges also displayed their unique musicality in the Judges Feature Concert, which marked one of the highlights of the weekend. But beyond all the music, we were touched to witness the relationships between musicians from all over the world. As our judge, Nancy Zeltsman, said at the conclusion of the event, “There’s been such a lovely atmosphere between all of you and I hope you made some really good friends because sometimes the people you see at competitions, you keep seeing them around the world.”
None of this would have been possible without the volunteers, staff, donors, sponsors, participants, judges, and all our followers who are always with us on our journey to help foster the growth of the marimba community. As a small token of our thanks, we threw a BBQ for all of our volunteers. We’ve got plenty of BBQ and not enough help, so let us know any time if you want to join our team!
Moving forward, we have already begun discussing plans for the next competition, including many improvements to make it more successful than this one! We hope you are looking forward with as much anticipation as we are.
As always, thank you for being by our side!