Fiddle workshops instill pride in youth

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Saskatoon fiddler Kim de Laforest and Nova Scotia musician Greg Simm, spent Sept. 29 to Oct. 30 visiting four communities in the Qikiqtaaluk region. Music for the Future facilitated fiddle workshops in Hall Beach, Pond Inlet, Pangnirtung, and Qikiqtarjuaq.

“The workshops are not only fun for students, learning music is therapeutic and provides a positive, creative outlet for many of our students, which also supports mental health and well-being” said Juie Lohnes, a former teacher.

At Pond Inlet’s Nasivvik High School, Nuka Joe Ootoova is participating in a fiddle workshop.
Photo courtesy of Greg Simm

Through these workshops, Lohnes wants students to feel a sense of pride and accomplishment that comes with learning to play an instrument. A feeling she hopes that students will carry into other aspects of their lives.

For the past 11 years, Music for the Future has been organized by the Tusarnaarniq Sivumut Association. Since then, Simm has been travelling to Nunavut to bring the enjoy of music into the lives of youth. Youths like Pond Inlet’s Nuka Joe Ootoova have had the opportunity to play the fiddle.

Next year, Music for the Future also plans to work with youths by providing them the opportunity to learn and play fiddles.

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