Youth choir to tour
Yellowknife group gets chance to perform at Canada Day celebrations

by Janet Smellie
Northern News Services

NNSL (NOV 29/96) - With a $5,000 donation from the Elks Club already in hand, the Yellowknife Youth Choir is optimistic it can come up with the money it needs for this summer's Unisong '97 tour to Ottawa.

Part of the Canada Day Celebrations on Parliament Hill, the trip would see the 33 members of the Youth Choir and seven adults travel to Ottawa to join other Canadian youth choirs to sing at the Canada Day celebrations.

Bill Gilday, who directs the non-profit choir made up of students from Grade 6 to 9 from all school districts in Yellowknife, says altogether they need to raise at least $45,000 to make the trip.

"We've always been self-supportive -- everyone paying their $100 a year to join, which doesn't go far considering the number of performances we have," Gilday says. "This opportunity, to get a chance to bring the choir to Ottawa to sing with a massive choir on Parliament Hill is the chance of a lifetime for many of these kids. We hope the community supports us."

Gilday says that, along with seeking funding from the city and service groups, he's hoping the private sector will also help fund the trip, considering the choir performs at so many community events, including a past performance for the Queen of England.

"Sports organizations have always been supported in Yellowknife. But yet when you're a cultural group such as a choir which performs many hours of community service, it always seem to lag when it comes to the amount of funding you get."

The Yellowknife Youth Choir can be seen next on Dec. 5 at the legislative assembly where it's agreed to perform at a special Christmas Tea for Seniors.

The choir's yearly concert at the Northern Arts and Cultural Centre has been scheduled for Dec. 19 and 20.