quinte rotary music festival text
Quinte Rotary - Celebrating 46 Years



Rotarian Rudy Heijdens, known to many for his tireless work as founder and director of the Hastings and Prince Edward Children's  Chorus, was the Quinte Rotary Music Festival's platinum sponsor since 2015 and once again in 2020.

Born in the Netherlands, Rudy and his family survived the German occupation of the Netherlands before emigrating to Canada in 1951. A student of the organ, he continued his musical and post-secondary education in Canada and entered the teaching field. After moving to Belleville, he was offered the position of Curriculum Coordinator-of-the-Arts with the then Hastings County Board of Education, a position that he held until his retirement in 1993.

 In 1986, Rudy founded the Hastings County Board of Education Concert Choir, now known as the Hastings and Prince Edward Children's Chorus. This international award-winning group has toured Europe many times, as well as performing at Carnegie Hall and parliament buildings in both Ottawa and Toronto.
He also served as organist at St. Andrew's Presbyterian Church in Belleville for 33 years, retiring in 2005 in order to devote all of his time and energy to the chorus.

Rudy hopes that his contributions as sponsor ($1,000 at the gold level, and $2000 for platinum) "will stimulate the growth of the music festival, and perhaps encourage other donors to come forward to keep music alive and well in the Quinte area."