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by Christine Anderson Gallant, May, 2011 Indian River Church, PEI

It is almost 7:30 on a perfect summer evening in rural Prince Edward Island and the sun is beginning its journey into the western horizon. A lone bagpiper calls the audience into St. Mary's Church and they find their seats in the sanctuary that has been virtually untouched by a renovator's hand since it was built in 1902. The setting sun casts its rays through stained glass windows creating a resplendent aura throughout this stunning space. This is the beginning of a night at the Indian River Festival.

The 2011 season of the Indian River Festival is overflowing with artists from many different genres including classical, Maritime, jazz, music theatre, choral, blues, bluegrass and more. As the Festival approaches its 16th season offering fine music in the acoustic splendor of St. Mary's Church, one can truly say that the world is coming to Indian River. The season includes performances by such international luminaries as sopranos Adrianne Pieczonka and Marie-Josée Lord, The London Quartet (Cantabile), Laila Biali, Rankin, Church and Crowe, Rose Cousins, Ron Hynes, The Abrams Brothers, James Hill, Matt Andersen and much more. After a nearly of year of restoration work, St. Mary's Church is dressed in her finest apparel and ready for the thousands of people who visit each year to attend a performance in this historic space.

Each year Artistic Director Robert Kortgaard assembles an excellent cast of musicians in performances that resonate under the summer sky. Mr. Kortgaard never has trouble gathering his musical cohorts together each year, in fact, he often has more difficulty deciding which artists to choose from the long list of those who would love an invitation to this beautiful setting on Prince Edward Island's North Shore. The combination of fine music making, warm hospitality, and world famous Malpeque oysters is irresistible and it is hard to say who goes home happier, the audience member or the musician.

For full concert and ticket information or call 1-866-856-3733.