Under the High Patronage of Her Majesty Queen Paola of Belgium
Onder de Hoge Bescherming van Hare Majesteit Koningin Paola
  

Previous prefaces 
 

???Forty years ago, when I first started the activities of commissioning the composers in order to establish the marimba as a solo instrument. 99.9 percent of Japanese didn't even know the very existence of the marimba.  Now, the marimba competition has grown to be able to draw many participants. The young generation who aspires for marimbist is rising.  Though we cannot be sure until much later, if those commissioned pieces will go down to prosperity, yet the number of marimba pieces are increasing steadily. As the generation of marimbists is getting on the move across the world, here in Belgium, it is my great pleasure to support Ludwig Albert to substantiate such an event like this.  Congratulations from my deepest heart. I believe today's marimba world is in the middle of the musical growth process, waiting for the future.  I feel that pieces which can grasp people's hearts and players who can inspire the audience through their performance are needed.  I am looking forward to seeing how this Belgium competition will be evaluated in the future ward long history of the marimba Keiko Abe (JP) - Marimba virtuoso (2007)
 

Ladies and gentlemen, dear music lovers
Being mayor of Sint-Truiden I am very happy to welcome you here for the fourth time on this worldwide Marimba Festival. As you will probably know, in 2001, 2004 as well as in 2007 Sint-Truiden was already host for this international cultural music event. Sint-Truiden will once again be fascinated by the wonderful sounds of this exotic instrument. Furthermore a competition has been linked to this festival; participants from all over the world can demonstrate their skills and qualities on this ‘piano of percussion’. I’m not at all surprised that this Marimba Festival is being compared to the contest of the Queen Elisabeth. As the saying goes: taking part in a contest is more important than winning it. With our splendid Academy Hall, Sint-Truiden has become an expert in organizing music events both nationally, European as world-wide. Moreover, in Sint-Truiden we have an expertise in making people very welcome as we are the tourist center of Haspengouw. I’m confident that this event has been professionally organized and that we will live up to our name once again The marimba has become a classical and contemporary instrument, within a wide range of musical styles. We were familiarized with the instrument through Latin-American rhythms. Nowadays jazz and pop artists are happy to integrate the new and enlarging sounds in their work. Our guests will without any doubt enjoy immensely the work of the participants as they did in 2001, 2004 and 2007. The members of the jury will make use of their knowledge and experience to pick out the best performers. This is not an easy assignment ! I wish all performers the best of luck and give you all a hearty welcome in Sint-Truiden. Ludwig Vandenhove - Mayor - Honorary federal parliament 2011
 
This is the third time, a prestigious and unique International Marimba event will be organized in our country. Marimba is not that known by a large public, although many recognize the ‘large xylophone’. The carrying dreaming sound captures the ears. Specialists informed me that the marimba is considered being the piano among the percussion instruments and that it knows a true, fast and intensive development as a solo concert instrument. The province Limburg and especially the city Sint-Truiden is proud to be again the host of such a unique qualitative marimba Festival and International Competition.
Under the artistic directing of Ludwig Albert, being a virtuoso on this instrument, this third edition will emerge into a worldwide famous success. The fact that whole the International marimba scene will gather to learn from each-other, to exchange experiences and to enjoy each other's music will give an important value to this prestigious event.  Friendships will be born for life. And if the marimba players from now, each on their own personal way knows to steal the hearts of the audience, I will be convinced that in further development of the marimba as a solo instrument, this Belgian marimba event will put an important  stamp in history.
Steve Stevaert - Governor Province Limburg 2007
 
Het tweede wereldwijde marimba festival wordt in Sint –Truiden gehouden van 20 tot 28 augustus van dit jaar. Opnieuw zal deze stad in de ban raken van de wondermooie klanken van dit exotische instrument. Aan dit festival is tevens een competitie gekoppeld. Hier kunnen deelnemers uit alle hoeken van de wereld hun meesterlijke kunnen op deze piano van het slagwerk demonstreren. Het verheugt mij uitermate te vernemen dat deze competitie vergelijkt werd met de prestigieuze Koningin Elisabeth wedstrijd. Onze Provincie heeft reeds heel wat ervaring opgedaan in het organiseren van wedstrijden op Europees - en wereldniveau. Telkens werden de organisatoren geprezen om hun perfecte planmatige aanpak van het evenement. De typische Limburgse gastvrijheid zorgt daarenboven voor de juiste omkadering en inkleding van alle randelementen, die bij een dergelijk groots gebeuren om de hoek komen kijken. Ik weet dat de organisatie in professionele handen is en wij gaan er prat op dat de Limburgse naam en faam opnieuw tot ver buiten onze landsgrenzen geroemd en geprezen zal worden. Het marimba-instrument heeft zich als klassiek en hedendaags instrument een weg weten te banen in verschillende muziekgenres. Via de Latijns Amerikaanse ritmes werd ons publiek er aanvankelijk mee vertrouwd. Thans maakt ook de jazz- en popmuziek veelvuldig gebruik van deze vernieuwende en verruimende klanken. Ik wens alle deelnemers en organisatoren heel veel succes toe. Ik ben ervan overtuigd dat de bezoekers dagenlang zullen genieten van de virtuozen op dit soloconcertinstrument. Mogen de juryleden hun expertise optimaal inzetten om de beste musici te bekronen. Hun keuze zal niet gemakkelijk zijn.

The second World wide marimba competition & festival will be placed in Sint-Truiden this year. Again the city will be amazed by the beautiful sounds of this exotic instrument. During the competition a lot of candidates from over the globe will be able to show their musical ability on the marimba, known as the piano of percussion. I'm very pleased to know that this competition has been compared with the prestigious Queen Elisabeth competition by on top of it a correct wording of all side activities, receiving attention by such great happening. I know that the organization offers extremely professionalism and we are very proud that the name of our province Limburg will receive again International fame and recognition. The marimba knew to find her way as classic contemporary instrument in different musical styles. Through the Latin American rhythm our public is familiar with the marimba. Nowadays as well you can hear the use of her beautiful novelty and expanding's sounds in Jazz & pop music. I wish all candidates and organizers a lot of success. I'm convinced that all visitors will enjoy during one week the virtuosity on this instrument. I hope that the jury will handle their expertise optimal to crown the best musicians. Their choice will not be simple. 
Success, Hilde Houben- Bertrand- Gouverneur provincie Limburg 2004

For the third time the Universal Marimba Competition will be held in the beautiful Province Limburg. I would like to welcome everyone. The past editions were showing already the passion for the music and the proud for the marimba especially. Those do not only contribute to the high level of the festival, but also explains that this event will be recognized on an International artistic level as indispensable. As Minister of Culture, I'm extremely pleased that the organization succeeds each time to attract and to convince many famous virtuosi and young marimbists to come over and that way to indicate Flanders in a cultural way on the map of the World. Mainly the International character with musicians and visitors from over the World pleases me highly. Sharing the marimba as a passion with a high quality, the Universal Marimba Competition & Festival 2007 brings the World to you. So many people are looking forward to be there. For all marimbists and visitors, it is a unique chance to gather with colleagues and in all friendship to honor the marimba. I wish all candidates and the jury the best and good luck. Aside an exciting competition, I hope it will be for all visitors, candidates and the organization a musical highlight. A meeting of beauty and emotion. I'm convinced that you all will enjoy the musical exchanges between so many presented Nationalities, connected with each other through this fantastic instrument and its art. Bert anciaux - Flemish Minister of Culture. 
  
Welcome to the fifth edition of the Universal Marimba Competition & Festival. St-Truiden and province Limburg is again the host for soloists and musicians from around the world and for those who love the full warm sound of this fascinating instrument. The Universal Marimba Competition & Festival is a unique combination of festival and international competition. A combination that showcases the musicians at best and that treat the audience with virtuosity, technical skill, control and musicality. In short, the ideal opportunity to discover and experience this music. Artistic director Ludwig Albert and his team promote Limburg on the artistic world map. I want to thank them for this and to wish them a successful fifth edition. I also wish to all participants good luck, to the jury exciting deliberations and to the audience a lot of joy. Herman Reynders - Governor Province Limburg 2013
  
The Percussive Arts Society is proud to partner with the International Marimba Competition 2004, Belgium. The competition and its host, Ludwig Albert, have established a tradition of excellence in advancing the art of marimba performance. Outstanding performers from around the world will come together during this event to celebrate, share, perform and learn. Not only will these individuals perform for a panel of excellent adjudicators, they will also have the opportunity to make friendships that can last a lifetime.  It is my pleasure to announce that the winners of this year's International Marimba Competition will be awarded a Showcase Concert at the 2004 PAS International Convention (PASIC) held in Nashville, Tennessee. PASIC is the premier percussion event in the world and brings professional performers, composers, educators and students as well as the percussion industry together for an incredible four days of music sharing. PASIC is the perfect place to showcase the outstanding talent that you will hear at this competition. The Percussive Arts Society was founded in 1961 on the principles of promoting percussion education and performance. The International Marimba Competition and Festival shares PAS' belief that music can bridge cultural and ethnic borders to help make our world a better place to live.  Congratulations on your success with this outstanding event. Best wishes, Mark Ford (US) - President, Percussive Arts Society USA (2004)

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