Audience Top

All performances are open to the public and admission (with the exception of the Showcase Concerts) is free. Parents, friends, etc. are encouraged to attend the Festival and watch the daily festival performances.

Parents and friends are advised to park in the Arts Parkade at the University of Calgary and in Public Parking at Calgary Stampede Park. Please be advised that parking fees may apply.

Bussing Top

National Motorcoach is a major sponsor of the Alberta International Band Festivals. We are grateful for their generous support over the past few year. They are able to provide transportation for a number of bands each day during the festival at a preferred rate.

Due to the impact of the economic downturn, National Motorcoach has generously reduced their Band Festival transfer rates. The one way rate per 56 passenger coach will be $150 plus GST.

To book buses for any of the three festivals, please contact Susan Waeyen at National Motorcoach directly.

Phone: 403-240-1992

E-mail: [email protected]

Equipment Top

The Alberta International Band Festival provides provides a limited amount of equipment on stage and in clinic room. Please read through Equipment List Provided By The Festival to confirm what you will have access to.

AIBF Calgary Equipment List 2019 - Please read through carefully ahead of time.

Equipment NOT provided by the Festival:

  • suspended cymbals
  • crash cymbals (this is NEW!)
  • hammer or mallets for gong, chimes or bass drum
  • keyboard instruments

PLEASE LABEL ANY EQUIPMENT THAT YOU BRING TO THE FESTIVAL. Any lost and found items will be available at the two Showcase concerts at the end of the event. You may also contact Ryan Hancock directly at [email protected].

PLEASE ENSURE THAT ALL EQUIPMENT PROVIDED BY THE FESTIVAL REMAINS IN THE VENUE AS PROVIDED. If there is a problem with any festival equipment, please advise a Festival representative immediately so the situation can be rectified as soon as possible.

Forms Top

Band directors are asked to complete the following forms and be ready to submit them when you arrive at the festival and check in. You will also be asked to submit scores of your musical selections - one set for each adjudicator. (TWO sets for Concert Bands 2 - 6 festival; THREE sets for Jazz festival and Beginner Band Festival) Photocopies of scores will not be accepted due to copyright infringement.

Background Information Form - You need TWO copies for Concert Bands 2 -6; THREE copes for Jazz or Grade 1 Beginner Band. Please attach to the front page of each set of your scores.

MC Form - You need ONE copy.

Band Set-Up Form - You only need to complete the form IF your ensemble is larger than 90 members. Please ensure it is completed and emailed in advance to [email protected] BEFORE Wednesday, February 12th, 2020 for the Grades 2-6 Band Festival.

Outstanding Performer Nomination - Jazz Festival Participants Only (ONE copy)

Honour Bands Top

The Alberta International Band Festival - South provides two Honour Band enrichment programs for the most accomplished high school musicians. Each high school has the opportunity to nominate at least three students per registered Concert Band performing ensemble and at least one student per registered Jazz Band performing ensemble. (Two Concert Bands = 6 students, 2 Jazz Bands = 2 students)

Our honour band committee members will be reaching out to the participating high school directors in regards to getting nominations. Further information will be sent out through them.

The rehearsal schedule and performance details are included on each of the nomination forms. We encourage our high school band directors to please discuss the rehearsal dates and times, and the level of commitment required with your students before nomination them to be part of the ensemble so they know what to expect.

Please DO NOT tell students that they are automatically in the ensemble just because they have been nominated.The Honour Band Committee members will go through the nominations and put together the ensembles. Each student selected will receive an emailed letter inviting them to participate, along with the music and information regarding the rehearsals and performance date. Students selected will be required to respond to this invitation on their own to Andrew Morrow at [email protected] before Friday, January 19th, 2018 to accept the position.


This year our Honour Concert Band participants will have the opportunity to work with one of our amazing adjudicators. Each of the conductors will work with the ensemble on one piece of music, giving the student performers a diverse and rich ensemble experience. They will be performing at the Showcase Concert on Tuesday, February 25th, 2020 at the Rozsa Centre at the University of Calgary.


This year our Honour Jazz Ensemble will have the opportunity to work with one of our amazing jazz adjusticators. They will be performing during the Jazz Showcase Concert on Friday, March 6th, 2020 in the TransAlta Performing Arts Studio (just north of Stampede Park).

Specific questions in regards to either of the two honour bands should be directed to Andrew Morrow at [email protected].

Music Selection Top

The Alberta International Band Festival encourages you to select musical literature that you believe will best showcase your ensemble at the grade level you have registered them for. Unlike other music festivals, we don't have a set performance list.

For both concert band and jazz ensemble performances, you should consider the overall performance. You have a set performance time that you must stay within (including allowing time for your band to get on and off the stage, and time for adjudicators to provide comments between pieces.)

We recommend you play a minimum of two pieces, but many groups opt to perform a warm-up piece or march that you have the option of including as part of your adjudication or not. The pieces selected should be in contrasting styles. For example, a good concert band program might include a traditional march and then a more contemporary original concert band work. A jazz program might include a swing tune, a ballad, and a funk tune.

The total number of pieces you choose to perform should be based on the following time allocations:

  • Total stage time for Grade 2 to 4 Concert Bands is limited to a maximum of 30 minutes including set-up, performance, and departure.
  • Total stage time for Grades 5 & 6 Concert Bands is limited to a maximum of 45 minutes to allow for additional set-up requirements; however, the actual performance time must not exceed 30 minutes.
  • Due to a new format for Grade 1 Concert Bands, they should plan on playing only two pieces. The new format allows each ensemble to hear two other groups play and will allow them slightly longer period of time to work with adjudicators in a clinic setting.

If you are looking for ideas for performance pieces, there are a variety of resources you can access:

  • Talk to more experienced teachers in your community including other teachers within your own area. they are often more than willing to share ideas and experience.
  • Talk to your music store representative. Both St. John's Music and Long & McQuade have music specialists who stay up to date on the new repertoire that is out there, as well as some of the tried and true "classics". they might have some great suggestions that would be ideal for your ensemble.
  • The Alberta Band Association has put together a syllabus for their festival. You can find the one for 2017 and past years at ABA Syllabus.
  • Teaching Through Performance books (available at most music stores). However, be aware that these are American books and the performance level they indicate a piece is at may not always be accurate.

Pieces selected should be original works for concert band and/or jazz and. While there is a definitely place for pop music, movie music and Broadway musical selections in the musical world, they are often not the best choices for festival performance literature.

A reminder that you are required to submit two conductor's scores for each piece you perform for adjudication (not including the one that you will be using yourself). AIBF does not condone the use of photocopied scores. Please order your scores early to avoid problems at Festival time.

Payments and Mailing Address Top

If you are trying to mail in cheques for registrations, please ensure they are made out to the "Alberta International Band Festival".

Our mailing address is:

Alberta International Band Festival

ATTN: Ryan Hancock

Box 1060, Station M

Calgary, AB T2P 2K8

Payments may also be made directly online by credit card. Please log-in to your account, click on the group registration that you're looking for, and select the Pay Now option at the bottom of the page.

Procedures - Concert Bands Grades 2-6 Top

Arrival and Unloading:

Before you leave your school, please review the Equipment List to ensure your percussionists and bass players know what is being provided and what isn't. All items you bring to festival should be labelled clearly with your school's name.

All buses should enter the University of Calgary campus via University Gate (from 24th Street) and proceed to the towards the Physical Education Building, where they should turn right. Buses should unload in the loop location between the entrance to the University Theatre and the Rozsa Centre.

STUDENTS SHOULD REMAIN ON BUSES, while the Band Director checks in at the Festival Office (located inside the Main Doors of the Rozsa Centre). At the Registration Desk, band directors will need to provide:

Once the director has registered, a guide will return with him/her to the bus(es) to unload students. Early arrival is encouraged in order to ensure that you and your group are not rushed for time.

Storage Room:

A volunteer guide will assist the band director and students in finding an assigned storage room. This room is for students to store instrument cases and coats/jackets. It is possible that you may have to share the space with another group so PLEASE USE AS LITTLE SPACE AS POSSIBLE. This is not a warm-up room - ABSOLUTELY NO PLAYING.

Storage rooms will not be locked, so students are encouraged to leave valuables back at their school. Neither the Festival nor the University of Calgary will be responsible for lost, stolen or damaged articles. As their is a limited amount of storage space available, groups will not be able to access their storage room until 15 - 30 minutes before their warm-up time.

Warm-Up Room:

A volunteer guide will meet your group in your storage area approximately five minutes before your warm-up time and lead you to the warm-up room. This room will be equipped with chairs and stands only. Directors are responsible for bringing their own tuners. The volunteer will give you a five minute warning before you have to move your group to the performance stage.


The guides will lead bands to the performance area at the appropriate time. The Emcee will introduce each group before its performance. Please wait for a signal from the adjudicators between each piece indicating that they are ready for you to continue.

Total stage time for Grade 2 to 4 Concert Bands is limited to a maximum of 30 minutes including set-up, performance and departure.

Total stage time for Grade 5 and 6 Bands is limited to a maximum of 45 minutes to allow for additional set-up requirements; however, the actual performance time must not exceed 30 minutes.


Band directors are reminded to submit an Emcee Form at check-in. Please do not change the stage setup unless this is critical to your success. If you do change it, it is your responsibility to return the stage to its original setup. This MUST occur within your time allotment.


Following your performance, a volunteer guide will lead each band to the clinic room for a half-hour clinic session with an adjudicator. Scores and adjudication sheets will be retrieved by the volunteer guides during this session and returned to the director at the end. You will receive an email link within 48 hours to your recordings - archival and adjudications.

Please note that if your ensemble did not use all of their performance time on stage, they may be asked to remain on stage until the clinic room is available.

Storage Room:

Following your clinic, a volunteer guide will lead your ensemble back to their storage room. At this point, students will be asked to put away their instruments and collect their belongings.

Groups who are staying to listen to other ensembles perform will need to make alternate arrangements for storing equipment, as our space is extremely limited.

Procedures - Jazz Ensembles Top

The Jazz Bands portion of the Alberta International Band Festival will take place from March 3rd - 6th, 2020 at the TransAlta Performing Arts Studio, located just north of Calgary Stampede Park. Family and friends will be able to attend the performances during the festival.

The address is 1302 - 6th Street SE. People are best to arrive from the north end of the Stampede Grounds along 12th Avenue SE.

Buses will be able to drop groups off in front of the TransAlta Performing Arts Studios. Please note for musicians and guests attending performances that dedicated parking is available in Lot 15 along 6th Street SE. There are Flames Games on Wednesday evening and Friday evening meaning parking will be scarce, but this lot is dedicated to our guests, however, you will have to pay for parking (but at least you won’t have to walk for blocks).

There is no real space for students to eat lunch or purchase food. We encourage bands to eat either before they arrive at the festival or afterwards.

To double-check what equipment is provided in the Warm-Up space, the Performance Area, and the Clinic Room, please refer to our Equipment List.


While students unload, band directors can enter the building and register their ensemble at the Registration Desk.

Directors will need to provide:

A volunteer will then take you and your ensemble to a storage area where you may leave your coats, belongings, and instruments cases. These areas will not be locked, so please encourage band members to leave valuables at home.


A volunteer will move your ensemble to the Warm-Up space. You will have approximately 25 minutes in this space before being moved to the performance area.

Performance Area:

After your warm-up, a volunteer will escort your group to the Performance Area. There is a space for audience members if come and listen if they wish.

Once you take the stage and get settled, an Emcee will introduce your group. Afterwards you can begin your performance. Please note that you should pause briefly between pieces to allow adjudicators to finish with their comments. They will acknowledge when you may begin the next piece. Your entire performance, including getting on and off the stage should fit within the 30 minute timeslot.


After your performance, a volunteer will lead your group to the clinic space. This is where one of the adjudicators will come and work with your group. Your scores will be returned to you at the end of this session and an email will be sent to within 48 hours containing Dropbox links to your recordings (one archival file and one with adjudicator's comments).

Procedures - Grade 1 Beginner Band Festival Top

The Grade 1 Beginner Band Festival will take place will take place on April 9th, April 15th & 16th, 2020.

April 9th performances will take place at Bishop Carroll High School.

April 15th & 16th performance will take place at the Calgary Arts Academy (640 - 14th Avenue SE), located just north of Calgary Stampede Park. Family and friends will be able to attend the performances during the festival.

People are best to arrive from the north end of the Stampede Grounds along 12th Avenue SE. Here is a link to a map to see the exact location - Drop Off and Pick Up For AIBF Grade 1 Band Festival.


Buses will be able to drop groups off along 14th Avenue SE or behind Calgary Arts Academy (see map above). There is an adjacent Stampede parking lot there as well that families and guests will be able to use. Family and friends will be able to attend the performances during the festival, but seating will be limited.

While you are attending the festival, all buses are asked to park in Lot 25. Drivers can plan to come back and pick you up about 10 minutes after your instrumental sectional clinics are over. That will give your group time to go back and pick up their items from the storage area and then meet your bus. (Stampede Park - Parking Lot Numbers Map)

Check In:

All directors are asked to check-in in the lobby area of the TransAlta Performing Arts Studio. Please come in and provide your school name at the Registration Desk. At the same time, you should also plan to hand in the following:

  • 3 sets of scores for each of the two pieces your group is performing (Please write the name of your band on the front page and make sure that all measures are numbered.)
  • MC Form (Click HERE if you need a copy.)
  • 3 copies of the Background Information Form (Click HERE if you need a copy.)

Festival Procedures:

Each performing ensemble is asked to limit their performance to TWO contrasting pieces.

For the 2020 year, we are continuing with the festival format that allows each performing ensemble to be part of a pod. This will allow each group to not only perform for an audience, but also give them the opportunity to hear two other ensembles. Please note that unlike in past year, groups must plan to arrive and depart at specific times. There will not be room for groups to stay and listen to additional ensembles.

Please note that there is no real space for students to eat lunches or purchase food. We encourage bands to eat either before they arrive at the festival or afterwards.

Registration Costs Top

Registration is an online process. Access for all three components of the festival can be found on the home page in the right hand column. It is based on a first come, first served basis. Once categories are full, registration will be closed for that component. Our goal is to close registration by November 23, 2018 for the 2019 year.

Costs per ensemble are as follows:

Concert Bands (Grades 2 - 4) - $450.00

Concert Bands (Grades 5 - 6) - $500.00

Jazz Bands & Combos - $450.00

Beginner Bands - $350.00

Schedule Top

The schedules for the Calgary festivals are posted below. Bands were scheduled based on the order in which they registered and an attempt to honour any special requests. Click on the link below to open the schedule. If you have any questions or concerns regarding your scheduled time, please contact Ryan Hancock at [email protected].

A reminder that our Jazz Festival and our Grade 1 Beginner Band Festival is run as a pod system. That means that each group within the pod will perform for the others and get a chance to listen to the other performing ensembles in their pod. The sequence of which group performs first in the pod will be determined by the festival staff based on size of each ensemble.

Please note that bands are welcome to come and watch others perform during the day. However, we have limited storage space availability so your group will be responsible for keeping their belongings and instruments with them outside the assigned arrival and finish times.

Showcase Concerts & Receptions Top

In addition to the regular festival schedule happening each day, the Alberta International Band Festival holds two Showcase Concerts and Awards Evenings to recognize some of our outstanding musicians in the Calgary community and surrounding area. These concerts feature guest performing ensembles, as well as one of our AIBF Honour Band ensembles.

Concert Bands Showcase Concert

Tuesday, February 25th, 2020 | 7:00 PM

Eckhardt-Grammatte Hall, Rozsa Centre | University of Calgary

Admission: $7.00 (Seating is limited)

President's Reception: A reception will be held in The Hub (Rozsa Centre) for band directors, sponsors and committee members at 6:00 PM. Light appetizers and drinks will be served.

Jazz Bands Showcase Concert

Friday, March 6th, 2020 | 7:00 PM

TransAlta Performing Arts Studio | 1302 - 6th Street SE (just north of Stampede Park)

Admission: $5.00 (Seating is limited)

President's Reception: A reception will be held ahead of time in the Green Room at TransAlta Performing Arts Studio for band directors, sponsors and committee members at 6:00 PM. Light appetizers and drinks will be served.