Executive Director's Message

As we wind down 2014, on behalf of our national Board of Directors, I would like to acknowledge the superlative contributions to the Coalition from – our team, our Youth4Music Ambassadors and Leaders, all of the local planning support for events and MM10, the musicians who support us and our Anthem judges, and of our course, our partners who help resource the work.

May your holiday season be filled with joy, celebration and peace!


Holly Nimmons,  Executive Director  

This is my personal plea to you – please help us. You’ve seen what was possible for us to accomplish so far – just imagine where we could go with more support! Your gift will support youth leadership for music, community action plans, new research, new resources and Music Monday activities. Instead of undertaking a massive fund-raising drive or holding another fund-raising event, I simply ask you to support our work now. Thank you.


And the winner is……Connor Ross – “We Are One”

After a nation-wide search for our first Music Monday Anthem, with numerous entries from songwriters of all backgrounds across Canada, our winner is Connor Ross for “We Are One”. A high school student, who learned of the Anthem Search from his music teacher, Connor is a remarkably talented young musician and songwriter. He was selected through a blind and objective process. We had no idea who the songwriter was until the winning entry was chosen. We are delighted. His song is great! Connor is a wonderful Youth Ambassador for our new Youth4Music program, which gives opportunities for youth to make a difference for music in their schools and communities.

Multi-platinum award winning Producer/Songwriter Rob Wells has already recorded our new Anthem at Orange Lounge Studios with young musicians and singers. Rob has worked with many top-selling artists, with songs landing in major release films, network TV shows and video games worldwide. More importantly though - he is a blast to work with and a vital component to the vitality of working with the young musicians.

“We are One” will be released this January, soon after the winter holidays; along with a video of the session, various musical arrangements, and several translations that can be downloaded free through the Music Monday website. Lots of information will soon be released about plans for next year’s Music Monday. 

Our 2015 Priorities

Our work reflects your work, for the benefit of children and youth in Canada. As we move into a new year, we will reflect to you the voices, strategies and action of those across Canada who strive to sustain and strengthen learning music in our schools, and communities.

During youth workshops, we encourage “big vision” and “big ideas” as we explore new thinking for new strategies. Some “big thinking” went into singing with Commander Hadfield in the International Space Station. So, we’re continuing to implement those skills we’re learning through music – creativity, innovation, critical thinking and collaboration. We have “big plans” for next year and beyond.  READ MORE

MM10 full webcast

Did you miss this year’s webcast? Here is an edited MM10 Full Webcast video

so you can check out the remarkable work that was undertaken by so many people across our country. Special shout out to the local planners, performers and all of our youth hosts! They’re NOTEWORTHY! 

Wisdom videos

We are posting more and more video clips to our website in order to reflect back to our supporters and followers the wisdom gathered during our community discussions across the country. Listen to what young musicians have to say during sessions at the Ontario Education Leadership Centre. Click here 

“Music and the gift you have with music can tangibly affect the community.” Guelph student

Wise Voices for Music (Ontario project)

Thanks to a grant from the Ontario Trillium Foundation, we are continuing our community discussions around the province. Thank you to everyone who came out to offer your wisdom at community roundtables in Thunder Bay, Windsor, London and Ottawa.

In Thunder Bay, a dedicated group of teachers and musicians shared how we could recognize Thunder Bay through their music – eclectic, innovative, creative. Thunder Bay is the home of the first Kindermusik studio in Canada (1986) and of an interesting community program, P.R.O. Kids (Positive Recreation Opportunities) that supplements recreational activities for youth. P.R.O. Kids is now being used in other communities in Canada such as the Niagara Region and Kingston. A great foundation was laid during our discussions, and we intend to come back to engage with youth and additional community music leaders.

In the new year, we are planning on new events in Toronto, Huntsville, London, York Region, as well as return trips to North Bay and Sudbury.

“Hope for Canada’s musical future” – feedback about the Wise Voices community discussion in Ottawa.

"Success in Music. Success in Life. It's no Coincidence"

What do an astronaut, a cardiac surgeon, lawyers, a former Chief of Defense, business managers and entrepreneurs, an Olympic Gold medalist, a chef, judges, a music producer, a major newspaper editor and a national TV news anchor have in common? MUSIC!!  So many people have told us about the poster from over 20 years ago that is still hanging in music rooms across Canada. You’ve been asking for a new one - here it is! You can get yours by clicking here. The poster is part of a larger awareness campaign that includes a diverse spectrum of successful professionals who share music education in their backgrounds and who credit learning music as a key factor in achieving success in their respective fields. Check out the quotes from each participant on the poster – Make sure you get yours to display proudly in your school, business or community work! It’s been suggested that this poster should be the first thing parents see when they walk into a school. Interesting suggestion! What do you suggest?

IDEA- Our poster is getting a lot of attention in the lobby at the Francis Winspear Centre for Music in Edmonton! Alison Kenny-Gardhouse, one of our Board members (Director of Educational Outreach, Francis Winspear Centre for Music | Edmonton Symphony Orchestra) had the poster mounted on foam board and set it by the Box Office so that people could stop and read it while they are waiting for tickets. That’s some awareness building!

Tell us what you are doing with the poster. Tell us the responses. Send photos too!


“Music can take you to a place of creativity and love and understanding that anyone can visit or even live”. Temira Axworthy, Charlottetown PEI

“I hope that learning music will give me a strong leadership base that I can take with me in other aspects of my life”. Colleen Robertson, Winnipeg MB

I will continue to share and preserve the music of Newfoundland culture and never let it die out” Naomi Brown, St. John’s NL

Thanks to support from Canadian Heritage, Youth Take Charge program, we’ve held meetings with youth in Winnipeg, Thunder Bay, Charlottetown and St. John’s. We have excellent wisdom from new youth leaders that will develop new strategies to build awareness and take action for the importance of learning music. We are in the process of developing a special newsletter to reflect the Youth4Music work. More to follow.

For youth, by youth, through music, Youth4Music provides leadership opportunities for youth to make a difference for music in their lives.

“Music is in everybody – it is not elite.” North Bay participant

NUFSICISUM – youth leadership awards

Launched earlier this year as part of the Youth4Music program, the NUFSICISUM award is granted to youth who make a difference for music in their school. The 2014 NUFSICISUM award winners are Brent Cater, Keswick High School (Keswick ON) and Nick Johnson, Kwantlen Park & Greater Vancouver Youth Music Academy (Surrey BC). NUFSICISUM recipients receive cash awards of $200 and a plaque, and a similar contribution is given to their school music program. Nominations for the 2015 youth leadership awards will be open next year.

About Brent Cater

When talking about youth leaders, I think it is important to recognize them for making a difference in their musical communities and schools because it validates their commitment to something others may think of as less important than academics.”   READ MORE

Youth Ambassador Article

Will Richardson shares his experience about being a Youth Ambassador at Casa Musica – an evening of music and meaning

musical studies take left-brain thinking and move it to the right, creative brain, literally opening up new horizons, horizons that deserve to be shared in schools.”

On Wednesday October 22, I had the privilege of being a youth ambassador at the Casa Musica event for music education at Casa Loma House and Museum in Toronto, run by The Coalition for Music Education in Canada. Featuring performances by prominent Canadian musicians, a speech by retired Canadian astronaut and air force test pilot Commander Chris Hadfield and a thoughtfully assembled silent auction, attendees, myself included, were captivated and inspired by an appreciation for music and a strong belief in its advocacy in schools. Read the FULL article here

IMPORTANT information for Canadian Heritage, Youth Take Charge

Have you participated in a Coalition program such as Youth4Music or Music Monday? Are you between 13 and 30? If you are, please take 10 minutes to complete this very important survey as part of our funded project with Canadian Heritage. If you are older and know youth who participated in either of these programs, please forward this link along to them. Data from this survey is extremely important for our project and ongoing support. THANK YOU!

English: http://pch.sondages-surveys.ca/s/ytc-mmu-oe-qr-2014-2015/langeng/
French: http://pch.sondages-surveys.ca/s/ytc-mmu-oe-qr-2014-2015/langfra/


Do you have something to tell Canada about your music program, or about the importance of learning music? If you’re interested, let us know by sending an email to info@musicmakesus.ca

Because of you

Support from our partners is fundamental to sustaining this national movement for music education. Many thanks to all of our partnersThis holiday season, get gifts from your local music store and our Canadian music retailers. Please support those who support.


CMEA/ACME2015 National Conference

Save the Date – July 9-11, 2015 Winnipeg, Manitoba

Some articles coming up in the next newsletter:

  • About Nick Johnson, NUFSICISUM award recipient
  • Principals of Music Awards recipient
  • Music Monday 2015
  • Report about Casa Musica – an evening of music and meaning
  • About a Coalition Board member
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Phone: 416.298.2871