singing

Bah! Humbug!

Christmas —’tis the season to be jolly, for many; but for others, not so much (think “Grinch”!). Perhaps … just maybe … a little balance to the celebrating is in order? This year on Friday, November 30 and Saturday, December 1, the Whitehorse Community Choir will take the stage, at the Yukon Arts Centre, to …

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It’s all about the performance

Prep your pipes: Klondike Karaoke is back. And even if you’re not onstage at the finals, you could be cheering from the crowd. For the second time this year, the Yukon Arts Centre (YAC) and the Canadian Filipino Association of Yukon (CFAY) are co-hosting a sing-off that will see one Yukoner crowned karaoke king or …

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Taking the Sound of the Yukon to a National Stage

On July 1, the community choir, along with the Persephone Singers and the Chamber Choir, will take their sound to Ottawa. As part of the annual Unisong Choral Festival, they will sing with and for choir members and audiences from around the country and the globe.

Getting Down to Motown

A nun, another nun, and a mystery illness all contributed to the development of Lucie Desaulniers as a singer. Growing up in the small Manitoba community of St. Jean Baptiste, not far from the U.S. border, Desaulniers attended a Roman Catholic school attached to a Grey Nuns convent. That’s where she met a “really cool” …

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Gimme That Tessitura

Full disclosure: Steve Maddock and I have a few things in common. We’re both PKs (preacher’s kids) who grew up in southern Ontario adding our piping, angelic treble voices to the choirs in our fathers’ churches. Point of departure: I struggled through the guy-hood change of voice as a scholarship student of an Ursuline nun, …

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Tantalizing Varietease Returns

Varietease VI: A Burlesque Carnival is the Yukon’s very own burlesque variety show. Varietease runs every second year. This is an on-year, Oct. 25 to 29 at the Yukon Arts Centre. This year’s theme is a repeat of the 2009 carnival and promises to be bigger and more creative than ever with six acts, the Varietease …

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The Other Side of a Light Story

A few weeks ago, in a light-hearted piece about bucket lists, I mentioned a trip to England with my father 20 years ago this month. I’m a little hesitant about writing a sequel some readers may find a bit too personal, or even disturbing, but you know what they say about rushing in where angels …

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Have Some Francais Fun

Often mistaken for the French version of the Yukon Sourdough Rendezvous Festival, Les Rendez-vous de la Francophonie (RVF), from March 3rd to 23rd, is a national initiative lead by the Canadian Foundation for Cross-Cultural Dialogue. The RVF is an event surrounding the Journée Internationale de la Francophonie (March 20), which is organized every year around …

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Life of a Musician

Louise Burns, a Canadian singer-songwriter and former member of the girl band Lillix, just completed a month’s residency in Dawson City as the songwriter in residence.   The Vancouver musician says it was her boyfriend who found the opportunity online. “I’m always complaining I have no time to write music, so when he saw the …

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Writing Across the Borders

An ambitious pan-Northern ensemble of seasoned musicians from all three territories will make its debut in Whitehorse next week as one of the performance highlights of the fifth annual Adäka Cultural Festival. The New North Collective will bring together the songwriting and performing talents of four Yukoners, two residents of the Northwest Territories, and a …

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A Biker at 30

Amelia Merher, also known as the ukulele-slinging songwriter Big Mama Lele, has ambitious plans for her 30th birthday. “I’m putting a new spin on fatbiking,” she says. On May 26, her birthday, Merher kicks off a 16-gig bicycle tour of the Yukon and B.C., including stops in Atlin, Carcross, Haines Junction, and then Vancouver, Surrey, …

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How To Love The Yukon Without Ditching Your First Love

Yukoners know the following conversational elements all too well: “So, what brought you to the Yukon?” “Oh, I came up here for work/to visit friends/as a tourist a few years ago and never ended up leaving.” The frequent follow up question is…

Leapin’ Lizards! It’s Annie

Curious Fact #1: stories about plucky orphan kids make wildly popular musical theatre fare. Witness Oliver!, Anne of Green Gables, and Annie. Curious Fact #2: two out of three musicals about plucky orphans involve adorable, authoritydefying redheads who find love in less-than-conventional families. “I don’t happen to be a tiny, adorable redhead, but I am …

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Collecting songs of the North

Songs tell the stories of places, and the Whitehorse Community Choir Yukon Song Project reflects the stories of the North. The WCC choir director Barb Chamberlain, and Susanne Hingley are collecting poems and writings of the Yukon. The goals: to compile a library of Yukon songs, and to set Yukon poetry/writing to music. “We really …

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Cool comes to Coasters

Donald Ray Johnson may be the coolest to come to Whitehorse. He’ll play Coasters with Yukoners Dave Haddock, Brandon Isaak and Ed White.

Sweet music, weird instruments

The first question had him stumped. Justin Haynes didn’t know the combined number of CDs that he, Jean Martin and Ryan Driver have produced. “Oh boy, that’s a tough one,” says Haynes over the phone. “Jean has been running a record label so, him alone, it would be at least 20. “Me, the same; and …

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