Building choral excellence
in our community
Guelph Youth Singers (GYS) is an award-winning choir with deep roots in our community for 30 years! GYS aims to support the well-being of children and youth in our community by providing an inclusive space to experience fun and high-quality musical training. We strive to brand Guelph as a city that values the arts and recognizes how the arts contribute to the healthy development of youth and children.
History of the Guelph Youth Singers
Our three original treble choirs are still going strong: Choir I, Choir II, and Choir III. In 2014, our Artistic Director & Conductor, Markus Howard, introduced our SATB choir for advanced young men and women’s voices. MTA (Musical Theatre Academy) is an excellent opportunity for choristers in Choirs II, III, and SATB that adds to their musical and dramatic performance experiences.
GYS has released three solo CDs:
- Birds in the Nest (1998)
- Wind in Our Sails (2002)
- Into the Breeze (2011)
GYS has also performed on CDs with:
- Guelph Chamber Choir
- On Christmas Night (1995)
- For the Canadian Literacy Association
- Notable Canadian Choirs Sing Christmas Carols (1996)
- With the Guelph folk ensemble, Tamarack
- Blanket of Snow (1998)
- Singing the title song of the CD
- Song of our City: A Musical Celebration of Guelph
In 2016, GYS created a friendship and musical partnership with the Wiiji Numgumook Kwe Drum Circle. This new relationship introduced our choristers to Canadian Aboriginal music and culture by exposing our singers and audiences to a previously unexplored sound, rhythm, and repertoire.
2016 was a memorable year with a five-day trip to New York City that was an extremely valuable experience for our choristers!
In the summer of 2017, members of Guelph Youth Singers were featured at the Elora Festival and developed a positive relationship with the Elora Festival Singers.
The Guelph Youth Singers were proud to be a guest of the Guelph Chamber Choir during their Celebration 150 – Canada & Ontario Sesquicentennial Concert!
Choirs III and SATB had the opportunity to attend the 2018 Cantando Festival in Whistler, B.C. Highlights of the festival included evening socials, concerts, workshops, and master classes. The trip was an educational, fun, and memorable experience for our singers!
GYS was the host choir for the Senior Treble Festival in March of 2018, welcoming seven Ontario youth choirs. This annual event takes place in various locations across the province and the choristers have an amazing time performing together and making new friends.
Two important fundraising concerts took place in 2018: Eramosa to Broadway, and Pop Can – The Popular Canadian Songbook.
Choirs I and II have performed musicals such as Mythical Forest, All for One, The Great Debate, and Bold Adventures – Once Upon a Time, all written expressly for them by our Artistic Director & Conductor, Markus Howard. The young artists work tirelessly to expand and develop the skills they need to perform these fun and entertaining concerts for our audiences.
The Kiwanis Music Festival of Guelph has been an amazing opportunity for our singers over the years. GYS participates every spring and always earns gold ribbons and high praise. Every year in recent memory, GYS has been awarded the largest choir scholarship as well as the trophy for Best Community Choral Program. Choir III and SATB have done exceptionally well at the Provincial and National levels as well, regularly ranking first and/or second.