This! is Canada – Virtual Choir


Experiences Canada is dedicated to finding innovative ways to connect young Canadians at a time when so much continues to keep them apart. Nothing brings young people together more than music!

For many young Canadians, extra curricular music programs have been cancelled or postponed.  Even garage bands and karaoke nights have been difficult to arrange with the limitations on multiple household gatherings. We’ve come up with a way for youth to make friends with other music lovers across Canada right from their very own homes! Apply to be part of Experience Canada’s very first virtual choir!

Open to youth ages 12-17. Rehearsals start March 23rd, 2021 at 7pm EST

How it works

Participants will have weekly group rehearsals (Tuesdays at 7pm Eastern) via Zoom beginning in March until mid June. Sessions will be conducted primarily in English, but translation will be available for French speaking participants. The choir will be led by a professional voice coach, and there will be a monthly social hangout just for fun.

Participants will learn four Canadian popular music pieces.  Everyone is encouraged to submit vocal recordings of their parts, plus photos and/or videos to go into a group choir video for each song!  All recordings will be mixed and packaged as music videos and released with a special Online Concert at the end of June as part of Experiences Canada’s This! Is Canada Celebration of Youth.

All voices and abilities welcome!  No prior experience necessary.

The Songs

Experiences Canada will pick four distinctly Canadian songs for the final recording
(final song list pending rights and permissions):

The Team:

Voice Coach: Lee Hayes

Award-winning Canadian songwriter and CFMA nominee Lee Hayes is a full-time singer, songwriter, arranger, choir director, and voice teacher. Lee is known internationally for her A Cappella groups Malaika and Cantarra, and on Showtime for her song “I Should Have Been David Duchovny’s Bride” (Californication). Based in both Ottawa and Vancouver, Lee is Canada’s busiest choir director and vocal coach. Since the pandemic, Lee has formed an online choir (VOX Virtual Choir) that has members from all over Canada, the US, and South America.

As a performer, Lee has toured Canada, the US and the UK, and has appeared on several international radio and television shows (CBC, CTV, CJOH, the New RO, BBC, ABC, WTN). Lee has over 250 a cappella arrangements in 3-7 part harmony to date. Many choirs around the world have licensed and performed her arrangements.

Accompaniment/Technical Production : Rob Cosh

Rob Cosh is an audio engineer/ producer/ composer/ voice over artist. He has been mixing and mastering audio for music and video for over 20 years. His recording/mixing credits include: Brad Sucks, The Peptides, and many more independent artists from across North America.

Rob Cosh co-founded the 613 Casual Choir in 2013. Since that time, and along with partner Lee Hayes, the 613 Casual Choir has become a tremendous success, consistently drawing hundreds of singers from all over the Ottawa region and beyond to joyful, community-driven sing-along events. Rob & Lee continue to host the 613 Casual Choir virtually on a regular basis, and participants attend from not only Canada but from around the world!

Rob has also released music under his own name, as well as “thehipcola, Slither, Flaming Tiger”, to name a few.. While most likely to be found in the studio sculpting sound, he’s also been spotted meditating, camping, and tuning pianos.

This! is Canada – A Celebration of Canadian Youth

At the end of the season, youth will be given instructions for creating a sound recording of themselves and submitting them to the production team along with supporting photos and videos. These will be mixed and edited into music videos to be released at a special Online Concert at the end of June as part of Experiences Canada’s This! Is Canada Celebration of Youth.

The online Event will also include the unveiling of a new interactive map of Canada which showcases youth projects created on virtual exchange and offers an impressive virtual tour across Canada as seen through the eyes of our youth, with youth voices as the soundtrack.

Travel to meet a choir friend:

Registration to participate in the This! Is Canada virtual exchange is also included, youth may choose to  twin with another member of the Choir and share videos about each other and daily life in their community or complete additional activities and earn the opportunity to travel to visit each other when its safe again to do so.


Finding ways to help connect Canadian youth together has never been more important!

In order to ensure our programs are accessible to all, we ask that you please consider making a donation, allowing youth to stay connected and participate in our virtual programs.

Nothing brings young people together more than music!

All donations over $20 will be issued a tax receipt. 
As a thank you, all donations of $100+ will receive an Experiences Canada Face Mask ($20 value)

To mail in your donation, simply complete the donation form found here

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