2022 Large Ensemble Festivals

Bay Section is committed to holding a full slate of in-person festivals this school year, however site restrictions and district policies have prevented us from fully securing sites at this time. As a result, CMEA Bay Section is postponing festival registration this fall to allow our site hosts time to gather necessary guidelines and information from their school districts. As we work to confirm these dates/sites, please fill out the Festival Attendance Survey. This survey is intended to gauge how many members are planning on attending a festival this year. This is NOT a festival registration. Please fill out this survey!

You can find a full list of tentatively scheduled 2022 festival dates by clicking HERE. As a reminder, all CMEA Bay Section festivals have the option to attend for comments only. No ratings, no numbers, no posted ratings, just feedback!

New for 2022 Festivals

Festival Fees
Large ensemble festival fees have increased to $350 per ensemble. As the cost of running festivals continue to rise, this increase is necessary to ensure that festivals are cost neutral. As a non-profit organization, CMEA Bay Section does not profit from our festivals. In addition to running festivals at cost, the increase allows us to run festivals with fewer registrations and avoid cancelations due to low registrations in smaller regions.

Orchestra Only Festivals
Bay Section will pilot two Orchestra-only festivals in the east and south regions. The goal is to provide specialized adjudication for string ensembles. These festivals will be open to any orchestra, regardless of region (i.e. if your school is in the west region you’ll be able to register for the orchestra-only festival in the south or east). If you are an orchestra director we highly encourage you to register your orchestra for the orchestra only festival. In 2023, Bay Section will greatly reduce the number of Band and Orchestra festivals and begin moving toward Band only festivals and Orchestra only festivals. This move is being made to ensure that each ensemble receives specialized feedback and the highest possible adjudication from professional musicians and educators in the Bay Area.

Pilot Expansion
Two Band and Orchestra festivals in each region that will be designated as pilot festivals for a new model taking place in 2023. This new model will ensure that ALL festival participants receive a clinic immediately following their on stage performance and ensures that ALL participants sight-read. As an educational organization, the Bay Section board feels it is important that we promote music literacy in all of our festivals as well as provide educational feedback in person.

What does this mean? This means that the “clinic” option will no longer be available at these pilot festivals. Immediately following on stage performances, groups will move into a separate room for sight-reading and a clinic. The sight-reading portion will be administered by an independent adjudicator that did not hear the group’s performance on stage. This process will take no longer than 10 minutes. Following sight-reading, the group will receive a clinic from a clinician that heard the groups performance on stage. Although all groups will be asked to sight-read, directors may opt to sight-read for “comments only,” which means that group will go through the sight-reading process and receive feedback from the sight-reading adjudicator. Groups that opt to read for comments only will not have their ratings posted or factored in to their final rating.

Choral Festivals
Beginning this festival season, all choral groups will receive an onstage clinic and will be required to sight-read (in a separate room) as described above in the pilot festival expansion


If you have any questions about CMEA Bay Section festivals please contact Greg Conway, Large Festivals Coordinator at gconw345@gmail.com.