Building Bridges

[Header Photo Credit: Niko Bell; Kôr from Gracenote Choirs]

The Bridge Choral Collective provides opportunities for participation for young singers at the high school and post-secondary level across Canada, as well as for music educators and conductors.

From September through November 2020, we proudly presented workshops for music educators and participant choirs. We are thrilled to announce more sessions for 2021! 

Registration for choir sessions and music educator sessions is now open — see links to register below! 


We’re delighted to present these 75-minute virtual workshop sessions with several of our luminary guest artists, open to all Canadian youth and young adult choirs (including high school groups) aged 14 and up! Registration includes a package of learning materials for follow-up by teachers/conductors available after each session.

These sessions will not be recorded.

Please contact us below if you are interested in joining!

FreePlay Duo – February 2021

Sat. Feb. 13, 2021, from 1:00-2:15 pm ET (find my time zone)

Please contact us for more information:

Using only their voices and innovative live looping techniques, international vocal sensation FreePlay (Dylan Bell and Suba Sankaran) sings you around the world without leaving your seat. New York jazz, UK pop, European classical, Indian ragas, Brazilian samba… FreePlay does it all, a cappella. Partners in music and in life, Canadians Dylan and Suba delight in sharing their unique and virtuosic a cappella style around the world, with performances in over 20 countries across 6 continents.

Improvisation from contemporary & global perspectives

Elements of contemporary vocal improvisation explored through jazz and blues  through discovery and development of vocabulary, building blocks, vocables, instrumental imitation, range, articulation, timbre, dynamics, etc.
Introduction to South Indian rhythm
The fascinating and complex world of rhythm and melody from south India will be discussed, and exercises taught through call-and-response and short exercises.
Circle songs (ostinato-based group improvisation) 
We will work together to build the pillars of group vocal improvisation. Elements of how to begin the song, create complementary parts, techniques to start/stop the improvisation, and more will be discussed.
For the purposes of this Zoom workshop, we will demonstrate by using our live-looping technology to build the songs and examples.

Music for this workshop will be included in your workshop fee. Scores will be distributed electronically as PDFs and may be used like any other music for your choir thereafter. 

Elise Bradley & youth from Choirs Aotearoa – MARCH 2021

Sat. March 6, 2021 from 2:30-3:45 ET (find my time zone)

(Please note the time for this workshop, because of the time difference between Canada and New Zealand!)

Contact us for more information:

Artistic Director of the world-famous Toronto Children’s Chorus, Elise Bradley will guide us through some repertoire by Maori composers with some special guest singers from Choirs Aotearoa.

Music for this workshop will be included in your workshop fee. Scores will be distributed electronically as PDFs and may be used like any other music for your choir thereafter. 

Lone Larsen & VoNo – May 2021

Sat. May 1, 2021, from 1:00-2:15 pm ET (find my time zone)

Please contact us for more information:

In the summer of 1999, Lone Larsen established the vocal ensemble, Voces Nordicae (VoNo). Alongside classical music, she has worked extensively with music from Afro-American traditions and takes great pleasure from a variety of different genres. Her interest in folk music is heavily present in VoNo’s artistic image. Lone herself has sung in a trio, the Babwäba-sisters and has been the artistic director for the jazz vocal group, Vocation.

Lone Larsen and members of her innovative ensemble VoNo will take you through their creative process of developing a song rooted in improvisation to help singers build an emotional intention to the music.

This workshop will involve creating a NEW, IMPROVISED piece of music, so there will be NO ADDITIONAL cost for music in order to participate.


Registration for each Building Bridges session is limited to ensure that sessions remain interactive and engaging for all participants. 

Choir Registration Fees*

Choirs with 15 or fewer participants = $75.00/session

Choirs with 16 or more participants – $5.00/participant

Registration for a session includes up to four adult participants (teachers, conductors, chaperones, etc.) who will attend to supervise your group. These adults are admitted free of charge and do not need to be counted in your participant count. 

All prices are in Canadian dollars.

* The cost of digital sheet music is included in the session fee for FreePlay Duo and Elise Bradley.


The Bridge Choral Collective aims to make these sessions accessible to as many different programs and choirs as possible; with this in mind, we ask that those who have larger programs consider having smaller groups within their program participate in each session. We have a maximum cap of 99 singers per program/organization/school for this reason; however, if there is sufficient interest from such programs, we would be delighted to facilitate additional sessions!

We also request that participating choirs have a youth or young adult focus as this is our special target audience when planning guest artists and sessions. Singers participating should generally be aged 14 and up; exceptions can be made per the judgement of each leader/conductor, but we remind you that the conduct of your singers is your responsibility, and that the content is geared towards this age range.

Email us at contact@bridgechoralcollective to inquire.


For our incredible music educator colleagues across Canada, there’s the Building Bridges professional development series! Sessions are capped at 50 participants maximum to ensure lots of quality interaction with our guests.

These sessions will be recorded, and will be available to those registered for a limited time.

Round Table Discussion – January 2021

Date: Saturday, January 30, 2021 

Time: 2:30 PM – 3:45 PM ET (find my time zone)

This session is FREE of charge!

Join with the seven Bridge Choral Collective conductors as they discuss best practices for youth/young adult choirs both within this snapshot in time dealing with the pandemic, but also ideas for when we can start to meet again in person. There will be time for attendees to participate in the discussion as well.

This session is FREE.  Register here


FreePlay Duo – February 2021

Date: Saturday, Feb. 6, 2021

Time: 2:30 PM – 3:45 PM ET (find my time zone)

Suba Sankaran and Dylan Bell (FreePlay Duo) will discuss online direction with your choirs. Several digital applications and platforms will be discussed. For example, Loopy for individuals to create live-looping songs and arrangements, Zoom and Jamulus as potential options for group singing and learning, and Suba will teach a specific song to talk about South Indian singing and the use of mudras (hand gestures used by South Indian dancers to visually tell stories) for choirs. Suba and Dylan use Ableton Live for their live-looping a cappella performances, so they will give performance demonstrations throughout the workshop.


Mark Anthony Carpio – March 2021

Date: Saturday, March 27, 2021

Time: 11:00 AM – 12:15 PM ET (find my time zone)

(Please note the time for this workshop because of the time difference between Canada and the Philippines!)

Mark Anthony Carpio, choirmaster of the Philippine Madrigal Singers, discusses how the group has actively advocated and directly pushed the growth of Philippine choral literature in the last 50 years by creating an environment where the metamorphoses of both intelligent choral writing and virtuoso choral performance are intertwined.


Lone Larsen – April 2021

Date: Saturday, April 24, 2021

Time: 2:30 PM – 3:45 PM ET (find my time zone

Lone Larsen, one of Sweden’s most distinguished conductors, is an innovative choral leader renowned for challenging existing concert forms with the aim of creating surprise and engaging the audience. Lone invites all singers to a creative, playful platform of making music. Join Lone to explore strategies and methods on invoking creativity in the choral rehearsal room, and the role of the choral leader in our evolving art form. 



Registration for the Building Bridges professional development series includes access to all three sessions. Numbers are capped at 50 participants to ensure that sessions remain interactive and engaging for all. Registration will open soon!

Professional Development Series Registration

$50 registration fee for access to all three sessions presented virtually.