Twelfth Unisong Canada Day free concerts with 300+ choristers from 11 canadian choirs and 2 youth orchestras!

    OTTAWA, June 17 /CNW Telbec/ - Announcing the 12th Award-Winning Unisong
Festival by 300+ choristers representing 11 choirs from Canada's provinces
conducted en masse by Ontario's Dr. Mark Sirett (biography & photo below) at
10 am on Canada Day (July 1st) in Southam Hall in the National Arts Centre
(free admission!). Relax in the air-conditioned comfort of the NAC for this
one hour exhilarating concert on your way to the noon show on Parliament Hill.
    This year, two outstanding Canadian Youth Orchestras from Hamilton and
Newfoundland will also participate in Unisong concerts on June 29 and on
Canada Day.
    Looking back over the 12 years since Lois & Don Harper created Unisong to
foster understanding and patriotism, Unisong has brought 184 Canadian choirs
with some 8200 choristers, conductors and chaperones to Canada's capital.
    "Choirs come as strong representatives of their cities, regions and
provinces. After spending five days rehearsing, eating, sightseeing and
performing together, the choristers will return home as musical ambassadors of
a united Canada. The Unisong Choral Festival demonstrates vividly that Canada
works best when Canadians work together!" says co-founder Don Harper.
    A special honour was bestowed on the Unisong Choral Festival by the
Association of Canadian Choral Conductors (ACCC) at their Bi-Annual Meeting in
Winnipeg in 2004. In a year of important choral events across Canada, Unisong
was named by this discerning group as recipient of their National Choral Award
as the Outstanding Canadian Choral Event! "Naturally, we were very pleased and
proud to accept the award, but we are well aware that it would not have been
possible without our dedicated friends and volunteers that have supported our
dream of creating this patriotic choral festival." said co-founder Lois

    FREE Concert Schedule - following is a list of where each will perform.

    Shared concerts will take place in three local churches on Sunday, June
    29th at 8:00 pm.

    Sunday, June 29    Rideau Park United Church, 2203 Alta Vista Drive at
    8:00 pm            Cunningham
                       Joyful Noise (Moose Jaw, Saskatchewan)
                       College Pierre Elliot Trudeau Choir (Winnipeg,
                       Cape Breton Chorale (Sydney, Nova Scotia)
                       Newfoundland Symphony Youth Orchestra (St. John's,

                       St. Paul's Presbyterian Church, 971 Woodroffe Ave
                       Jeunes Chanteurs d'Acadie (Moncton, New Brunswick)
                       Mulgrave Community Choir (West Vancouver, British
                       Chantry Singers (Port Elgin, Ontario)

                       Orleans United Church, 1111 Boul. Orleans Blvd.
                       Arioso Choir (Calgary, Alberta)
                       Clarenville Middle School Choir (Clarenville,
                       Hamilton Philharmonic Youth Orchestra (Hamilton,

    Not performing     Choeur Classique de l'Outaouais
    on June 29th or    Ottawa Choirs (host choirs)
    30th but
    performing in the
    3 massed concerts
    on Canada Day

    Monday, June 30
    12:15 - 2:00 pm    All choirs above will perform their own repertoire on
                       the Main Lobby Stage of the National Arts Centre

                       (Biography and Photo Below)

                              12th UNISONG 2008
                     Dr. Mark Sirett(*), Guest Conductor
                           MASSED MUSIC FOR CHOIRS

         O Canada                     C. Lavallée,(*) arr. Godfrey Ridout(*)
         Let Wildness Sing            Imant Raminsh(*)
         Les Raftsmen                 arr. Donald Patriquin(*)
         Watane                       Mark Sirett(*)
         Go, Lassie, Go               arr. Mark Sirett(*)
         Un canadien errant           arr. Mark Sirett(*)
         Gate Gate                    Brian Tate(*)
         Wood River                   Kaldor(*), arr. Zwozdesky(*)
         Will Ye No Come Back Again   arr. Mark Sirett(*)
         United in Song               Paul Halley(*)

    (*) Canadian composer/arranger

    TUESDAY, JULY 1      Hamilton Philharmonic Youth Orchestra & Newfoundland
    11:00 am - 12:00 pm  Symphony Youth Orchestra on the Main Lobby Stage,

    2:30 - 3:45 pm       The Unisong Massed Choir also sings with the
                         National Arts Centre Orchestra, conducted by Pinchas
                         Zukerman after the noon show on Parliament Hill.

    3:45 - 4:45 pm       Newfoundland Symphony Youth Orchestra & Hamilton
                         Philharmonic Youth Orchestra on the Main Lobby
                         Stage, NAC.

    7:30 - 8:45 pm       If you're planning to attend the evening show on
                         Parliament Hill, why not stop at the NAC at 7:30pm,
                         when there is a repeat of the afternoon concert with
                         the NAC Orchestra & UNISONG.

    Guest Conductor Bio

    Dr. Mark Sirett is the Artistic Director of the award-winning Cantabile
Choirs of Kingston, involving seven choirs and 300 choristers that have toured
England, Ireland, Czech Republic, and Italy, and have won numerous regional,
national and international distinctions. He graduated in choral conducting and
pedagogy from the University of Iowa, taught at the Universities of Western
Ontario, Alberta, Bucknell (PA) and directs Queen's Choral Ensemble and
teaches conducting. For six years he served as Organist/Music Director of
St. George's Cathedral, Kingston, whose Cathedral Girl Choristers won first
prize in the Church Choir Category of the 1996 CBC Choral Competition.
Dr. Sirett won two international awards: the Jury Prize for Imaginative
Programming and Artistry at the Cork Ireland International Choral Festival,
2002, and Outstanding Conductor Award at the Young Prague 2004 Festival. He is
also an award-winning composer of over 60 works and has been commissioned by
the National Youth Choir, Toronto Mendelssohn Choir, University of Iowa, Elora
Festival Singers, Amabile Youth Singers of London, Ottawa Regional Youth Choir
and the Oriana Singers to name a few. He is frequently in demand as a choral
clinician, adjudicator in Toronto, Winnipeg, Edmonton, Calgary, Ottawa and
guest conductor of the Ontario Youth Choir, Alberta Honours Children's Choir
and Amabile Choirs.

    /NOTE TO PHOTO EDITORS: A photo accompanying this release is available on
    the CNW Photo Network and archived at
    Additional archived images are also available on the CNW Photo Archive
    website at Images are free to accredited
    members of the media/

For further information:

For further information: Don Harper, Director, Arts Bureau for the
Continents, (613) 234-3360, Cell: (613) 762-0865, Fax: (613) 236-2636,

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