The PRISMA Sail to the Symphony was a day of spectacular music and the opportunity to travel with friends, and make new ones along the way.
8:00 AM seemed a little early to set out for the 9:55 ferry to Powell River but we soon found over 300 other walk on passengers also going to the concert, and that parking was at a premium. For that number of people, everything moved along smoothly and we were soon underway and standing in line for breakfast, or at least a coffee, and enjoying onboard entertainment provided by The Ceilish Fiddlers.
On arrival, buses whisked us off to the Evergreen Theatre in the Powell River Recreation Complex, a beautiful bit of architecture set in the woods on the outskirts of town. Directed to the dining area, we noted that each napkin on each round table for eight was set with a different colour of the rainbow. Very effective. PRISMA. It was pleasant to have classical music in the background at a volume where one could communicate with others. With at least two hundred people in this room for a buffet lunch, again, everything went smoothly. Rave reviews on the salmon.
With a short breather before the concert, we were free to wander outside and absorb some warm sunshine or tour the building and grounds where wine was being served.
Soon settled into our seats, we were enthralled by the performances of pre-professional student-musicians and renowned guest artists from symphony orchestras around the world. This was the final concert in the Festival series, which followed two weeks of the students having the opportunity to work alongside their guest artists for daily master classes, rehearsals and recitals. Solos were performed by award winners of the workshops. The Shostakovich symphony was not a familiar piece but the conductor did enlighten us somewhat on some of its orchestral highlights. Needless to say, everyone was on their feet for an extended standing ovation.
Immediately follwing the performance, we were back on the buses for the short ride back to the ferry and on our way home. While waiting in line, cookies, fresh cherries, coffee and water were provided, which was a nice parting touch.
The general feeling for the day was “Let’s do it again next year!” and, so we shall.