Getting to be a part of Tomorrow’s Voices has been a hugely rewarding, exciting and impactful experience over the last few years. From brainstorming on what to call the choir and our slogan, all the way to our expansion to Hamilton and Toronto, there have been so many amazing things that have happened along the way.
Here are a few of my favourite memories since starting Tomorrow’s Voices in 2017.
I was at a Best Buy shopping for back to school gear in August 2017 when I got the email notification from TD that they were going to be able to support the choir and provide the seed funding we needed to get started. I called and texted a ton of people right there in the store and I couldn’t wait to see it come together.
The first rehearsal was so great as we had over 25 kids, some whom knew each other and others who made fast friends. I still remember the goosebumps from the kids singing Ho Hey by Lumineers and belting it out. I was pretty sure right then and there we were doing something right and going to create something great.
When the kids performed at the launch event just about 8 weeks after the first rehearsal, it was honestly pretty emotional. I forgot a bunch of bits and pieces from my welcome speech and had nerves on behalf of the kids. From the kids walking in to the PAC singing Robots with Katey Gatta to singing Forever and Ever with Royal Wood, the kids sounded great and the audience reaction was amazing.
When the kids sang with Serena Ryder, what really stands out is how much Serena, her band, and her management looked out for the kids and engaged with them so much, including providing each kid with enough pizza for a year and a signed lyrics poster designed by Serena herself! One of the kids came off the stage and said to me, “That was the most amazing and terrifying thing I have ever done.” To be able to sing in front of nearly 1,000 people just 2 months after we formed the choir was so impressed. Their confidence and composure was amazing.
In the fall of 2018, the kids were invited by Neko Case to sing at the Danforth Music Hall. Neko, her band, and her management and tour team were so great with the kids! One of our younger choir members asked Neko for the wifi password to the venue. She said “Honey, I am not sure but let me find out,” and her tour manager got it and typed it into the little guy’s phone. It was really funny and so cute!
When the kids performed with Dan Mangan at Cicada festival in the fall of 2018, one of the kids in the choir was adamant he had to get an autograph from Dan so he brought a pen and a little cue card. After he asked about 10 guys if they were Dan Mangan, I spotted Dan on stage and made sure they met up. Dan signed “Hi David, Read lots of books and always trust your gut, Dan.”
In the Spring of 2019, our kids sang with Scott Helman at the Big Brothers Big Sisters Toronto Fundraising Gala. They had a great time singing with Scott and he was so great with the kids handing out high fives, signing autographs and having lots of fun on stage with them. On the way back to Niagara, Scott texted me to say how much he had singing with the kids and to give them all a big hug from him. They lost it!
When we got invited to attend a play at the Shaw Festival, we went to Cows for ice cream afterwards. One of the kids told me she felt like I had adopted all of the kids and treated them all like they are my own. Whoa. It’s true and I will always care about each and everyone of these kids.
I’m so excited to see what the future has in store for Tomorrow’s Voices. But even more excited to watch what happens with the kids in each chapter as they get more involved with music. They’re all so special, and I hope they know how much the entire Tomorrow’s Voices team cares about them!