How do I register?

    When it's time to register (annually from January 1st to 31st) please visit our HLMF MusicFestivalSuite.com registration site and create your profile. Each registrant, their teacher (and for registrants under 18 years of age, their parents) must create their own profile.  You can then create as many registrations as you would like from within your profile. 

    In order to register, a teacher must create their profile first, in order to give parents their ENT ID#. Once this is done, parents must create a profile for themselves, generating their own parent ENT ID#. Then a student profile can be made, linking the student profile to both the parent and the teacher ENT ID#. This allows for either the teacher or the parent to register the student, and allows for the teacher to assign payment to the parent if necessary. See following FAQ for difference between a profile and a registration.  Download our manual for extra help, or visit www.musicfestivalsuite.com to access all kinds of information to help you create your profile and register in the festival.


What is the difference between a PROFILE and REGISTRATION?

     A PROFILE is a user account (login) that belongs to an individual. This contains basic information such as name, address, teacher, etc. A profile is only created ONCE for an individual, and is used repeatedly to log in to for the following years of participation. 

     REGISTRATION is an annual sign-up for particular classes. This contains specific information about what class(es) a student is registering for, along with piece titles, composers and lengths. Registration is done every year between January 1st and 31st.

      Participants, their parents or their teachers must log in to their PROFILE in order to REGISTER. Which means that a profile must be set up (for all stakeholders: teacher, parent and student) before registration can happen.

When can I register?

      Registration opens every year on January 1st and always closes at midnight on January 31st.

What if I miss the registration deadline?

      For the 5 days following registration deadline (January 31st), we allow late registrations but charge a $25 late registration fee for each class to cover administrative inconveniences. Once the late registration deadline has closed, it is not possible to register.

Who can be an entrant in the Festival?

      Any amateur student (or groups) of music or speech, of any age! We have classes for all categories and ages. See the AMFA syllabus for a list of all categories, age groups and classes. Our festival uses the Alberta Music Festivals Association Syllabus, along with a few additions of local classes. Please consult the syllabus for information regarding each specific class, as they all have different criteria and requirements.

How does the festival schedule work? When will I know when my class is scheduled?

     The Festival schedule is quite complex and is determined based on many moving parts. The basis for the schedule is the general festival schedule which is typically released here on our website homepage and on our social media by November or December. This general schedule outlines which categories are on which days, so that participants and teachers can know ahead of time which day(s) they may be playing. The fine tuning of the final schedule does not happen until after late registration closes after the first week of February, and takes a couple of weeks to finalize, as we have 3 weeks of classes and over 1000 participants to coordinate! When the finalized schedule is released, it will be posted on this website on our registration and schedules page as well as on social media.

Can I make changes to my schedule if the date/time given does not work for me?

      Due to the complex nature of scheduling such a large event, we cannot accommodate schedule changes or requests. Please be aware that if the general schedule states that - for example - March 3rd and 4th are the dates for your category (ie: Strings), you must be prepared to be scheduled at any time on those dates. The only exceptions for accepting scheduling requests are for school groups (choral etc) and for musicians requiring specialized accompaniment - in these cases, forward notice is required (prior to registration deadline) or else we may not be able to accommodate.

Can I make changes to my registration(s) after registration has closed?

       You will not be able to make the changes yourself once registration deadline has closed  (but up until that point you can). If you must make a change after deadline, you will have to contact our tech support at help@highwoodmusicfestival.com . We can easily make simple changes, such as piece length update, etc. If the change necessitates an entire class change (whether due to a mistaken registration or a changed mind), it may not be possible. We will try to accommodate if possible, but please note that this is not always possible and that a refund cannot be given. It is up to the registrant or teacher to ensure that the registration is done correctly before deadline.

What classes, instruments and categories are in the festival?

See our Festival Classes and Categories page.

How much does it cost?

    Junior classes (12 and under, pre grade 1-grade 3 piano) are $25 per entry. Intermediate classes (16 & under, grade 4-7 piano) are $30 per entry. Senior classes (senior or grades 8 and above piano) are $35 per entry. Choir and Band classes are $60 per entry. Recital or concert classes are $45 per entry and small group performances (duets, trios, quartets and quintets) are $40 per entry.

I'm over 18, can I participate?

      Yes! Just make sure you register for the correct class (18 and over) for your category.  To see a list of classes available for over 18s, see the Alberta Music Festivals Association Syllabus.


How do I know what class(es) to register for in the festival?

     This will require discussion with your teacher. Your teacher will best know how to categorize the piece(s) you are playing for the festival. Please make sure you consult the Alberta Music Festivals Association Syllabus with your teacher to ensure that you and your piece meet the criteria for that particular class. Please be mindful that it is VERY important that your register for the correct class(es), as a wrong registration can result in a cancelled registration with no refund. We are not responsible for registrations for the wrong class, and we cannot consult on which class to take as we are not necessarily familiar with your category, instrument or piece as your teacher would be.

If I don't have a music teacher, can I still be an entrant?

     Yes, you can register as an independent student. Please be mindful of the above note about registering for the correct classes, especially since you won't have a teacher to consult. 

Do I have to be really good to play in the festival?

      All levels of ability are welcome and celebrated at our festival! Whether you are a 38 year old beginner or a 5 year old protégé, we have a place for you! Keep in mind, however, that you should have a very well-rehearsed piece prepared, as our adjudicators want to be able to give you the best feedback based on your actual level of ability.

What is the Adjudicator' showcase?

       The Adjudicators' Showcase is a public and celebratory performance at the very end of the festival. Adjudicators will select their favourite performances and selected participants will be contacted soon after to confirm their participation in the Showcase.  This event features a wide variety of categories, instruments, ages and levels of ability - something of a variety show. It is considered an honour to be selected to play in the Showcase!

In 2021 we are hoping to have an outdoor showcase in the late spring, depending on COVID19 restrictions. More info to come!


What can I get out of participating in the festival?

      Besides having a concrete reason to work towards a personal goal, participants can also benefit from the professional adjudication and feedback provided in each session. Some students may also be selected for our Festival Showcase (see above) and/or to represent the Foothills at the Provincial level.  We also award a variety of plaques, certificates and scholarships to students in a variety of categories, such as "Most Promising" and "Excellence in..." Download our welcome package for more info on what to expect!

Are there opportunities to be involved in the festival aside from being a participant?

       We are ALWAYS looking to add more volunteers to our roster. It takes a village to run this festival! We particularly need volunteers for the weeks of the actual festival, as door greeters and as secretaries (who assist the adjudicator in the session).

If you want to be involved in an even greater capacity and want to add your voice and expertise in a more direct way, please contact our board president at  highwoodlionsmusicfest@gmail.com to find out about opportunities to serve as a board member!

If I'm a teacher, how do I get my students involved?

      All of your students can participate in our festival! Your primary role as a teacher (besides coaching them in their music!) is to help them figure out what classes to register for. Some students don't even know about the festival until their teacher tells them about the opportunity, which is why we really rely on teachers to help promote the festival among their own students!!

As a teacher, do I need to register my own students?


Some teachers prefer to register their students themselves, others just tell the parents exactly what to do. If you want to register your own students to ensure they are registering for the right classes and registering on time, you as a teacher can assign payment to parents so that you are not stuck with the registration bill!

      Whether you are registering your own students for their classes yourself or not, this is the general order of operations for any registration (also see https://www.musicfestivalsuite.com/extra-resources.html for diagrams and other help registering):

1. You the teacher FIRST need to create a profile if you don't have one already. 

2. Give the parents your profile # (ENT______)

3. Then get the parents to create their own parent profile if they don't have one already. This will generate their parent profile #.

4. Then parents create their own kids' profile. This will generate the student profile #. It is in this profile that your students will be linked to your profile # so that you can assign payment if needed.

5. Once teacher, parent and child all have a profile (which does not need to be re-done every year, a profile follows year to year), a student can be registered for their class(es) either by the parent or by the teacher, via any profile.

Important Note: if you are a teacher of an ensemble, you do not need to register each student in your band/choir/orchestra. Just create a profile in the name of the group, with yourself as the teacher.

When creating a profile for your group , just proceed as though the group is the "entrant" - there will be a prompt along the way to indicate it is a group. Here is a helpful web page to help you navigate how to organize your group registration details: https://www.musicfestivalsuite.com/group-entrant-profiles---using-them-to-your-advantage.html