Just an opinion, but I sincerely do not believe that the Canon SX10IS is the best choice for your proposed use. The aperture narrows very rapidly as youzoom out make it a rather imperfect choice as a low light level camera.
I happen to own and use thePanasonic FZ-28, the Sony H-50, and the Nikon P-80. Clearly, the Panasonic FZ-28 is the low light winner, and it is very quick and accurate to focus quickly and perfectly when you you the spot focus mode. The Sony H-50 comes in next, but its photos tend to be a little soft in their focus, when compared to the FZ-28. The Nikon P-80 comes in dead last and while it tends to focus well, there is a great deat of electronic noise, and artefact in their low light level photos.
I do a lot of no flash/low light level/existing light stage photgraphy. Here is a sample FZ-28 photo than nice shows it low light level capabilities.