Vernon Community Music School instructors Arne Sahlen and Jennifer Martselos play a duet on the grand piano in the school’s East Hill  heritage home in preparation for the VCMS’ inaugural Charity Ball during Carnival.

Vernon Community Music School instructors Arne Sahlen and Jennifer Martselos play a duet on the grand piano in the school’s East Hill heritage home in preparation for the VCMS’ inaugural Charity Ball during Carnival.

Indulge in some sweet sounds at new Carnival event

Vernon Community Music Sschool to build on its foundation with inaugural Charity Ball

The sound of music is not the only thing emanating from the Vernon Community Music School.

With a new president and board of directors, there’s a buzz of excitement as the school plans for a new gala event taking place during Vernon Winter Carnival.

The VCMS Charity Ball, to be held Saturday, promises to be the formal affair of the year, reminiscent of the Snow Flake Ball, which was formerly held during Carnival, said the VCMS’ new president Gerry Martselos.

“Formal events in Vernon are a rare occurrence; our community needs events like these,” he said. “We aim to showcase the immense talent we have at our school and in our community, giving the people a chance to dress to the nines, and enjoy a fine dinner, live and silent auctions, and a fabulous evening out, all the while supporting a great cause. And, of course, we guarantee the best music in town.”

In addition to the school’s own talented faculty, attendees will dance the night away to the renowned 20-piece Mark Rose Swing Band.

All proceeds raised from the event will go towards the Sound Foundation campaign, with funds for repairs and a new foundation to the century old heritage home, which houses the music school.

“Located in the Smith House on East Hill, it’s no secret that the music school is on unstable ground,” said Martselos. “We’re working hard to change that, with our Sound Foundation campaign. We plan to elevate our school, literally. This 100-plus-year-old heritage home is to be lifted and suspended, while the entire foundation is excavated and replaced, providing a sound foundation for the school to operate on for centuries to come.”

Through various campaign efforts, more than $100,000 has been raised to date, which is approximately one-third of the capital required for this massive endeavour, with a total estimated cost of more than $300,000.

“It’s a lot of money, but it’s a bargain to keep this pillar of the community as a centre for learning, versus a centre that’s leaning,” said Martselos.

The VCMS board is also looking to launch a new advertising campaign and is seeking businesses that would like to support and work with the school on an ongoing basis.

“Over 700 students attend the Vernon Community Music School. That’s well over one per cent of the population of Vernon that attends our school, with countless alumni throughout the community,” said Martselos.

“Our music school is a non-profit organization, and boasts some of the lowest rates in the province, and we plan to keep it that way. This requires much support from the community, as well as our members and staff. We’re looking to make this Charity Ball a smashing success, and an annual event.”

The inaugural VCMS Charity Ball takes place Saturday, Feb. 4 at the Vernon Golf and Country Club Attendees will enjoy an appie/cocktail hour, dinner, a live and silent auction, as well as entertainment by VCMS staff and students. After dinner, patrons can dance the night away to the Mark Rose Swing Band.

Tickets are $60 each and are available at the music school by calling (250) 545-4977 or get them at the Carnival office, located at 3401-35th Ave. Call (250) 545-2236.