Gloria Kaus remembers being nervous when she served her first role as secretary to an adjudicator at the Stephenville Rotary Music Festival.
That was a dozen years ago when she retired from teaching after a friend told her the festival was short in secretaries and believed it was something she would be interested in doing.
She gave it a try, loved it and the nervousness wasn’t long going away after the first time.
Kaus said there’s been quite a variety of adjudicators that she served as secretary for during the years and each was different, but the common denominator of all of them was they were all very professional.
In addition to serving as a secretary she has helped with the festival in any way she could, from serving at the front table in the Arts and Culture Centre to whatever job they need her to do.
In fact, when the festival was starting to wane some years back and was in danger of folding, she was with a committee of people trying to save it and were successful at strengthening it.
Kaus said the festival is stable but each year the number of kids involved seems to be getting lower despite a good number of dedicated music teachers.
“Children are involved in so many activities, they’re forced to choose and it’s hard for them to fit it all in,” she said.
Kaus said while the festival is on, besides assisting the adjudicators she takes in all the performances.
“I enjoy it because a lot of the children I taught at St. Michael’s Elementary School in Stephenville Crossing have their children on stage now and they appreciate you being there,” she said.
Kaus said there were many young musicians who went through the festival who have made music their profession.
“Just last year I heard a performer at a restaurant in St. John’s and before I seen him I said to Kip (her husband) that sounds like Evan Smith on the piano, and it was,” she said.
Kaus said the reason she does her work with the festival is for the kids as it’s an important part of their development.