Vancouver conductor Leslie Dala laments cancellation of MusicFest

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Local conductor Leslie Dala says he hopes MusicFest Vancouver can make a comeback after the summer festival was put on hold because of financial problems.

“When I first caught wind about this I was really shocked. It’s a sad thing for our community,” Dala told the Straight by phone today (November 21).

“I see it as a really important part of the fabric of the arts community in town,” he said.

MusicFest Vancouver organizers announced yesterday they have suspended the citywide celebration of jazz, classical, and world music for 2013.

The Vancouver Summer Music Festival Society, which runs the annual festival, cited financial issues that include a significant loss of revenue.

Dala, who guest conducted the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra during opening galas for the last two editions of MusicFest, said he hopes people rally to support the festival.

“It’s a great festival bringing a lot of different artists together,” he said. “You have people with international stature coming in for some big events. You have lots of local folks putting on some really interesting projects.”

“It was a really well thought out and crafted festival, so I really hope it’s not down for the count permanently.”

The MusicFest Vancouver board has pledged to work to resolve the financial issues and bring back the festival. They are also seeking donations from supporters.

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