Brock research leads to Choir Nation benefit event

Collaboration between a Brock University researcher and a Canadian musician has led to an upcoming concert raising funds for charity.

Todd Green, assistant professor, Department of Marketing, International Business and Strategy, has long been examining the challenges facing Canadian musicians as a result of the onset of digital music.

In March 2015, Green moderated a Goodman School of Business panel discussion at Brock called Music Matters, where a handful of industry professionals discussed the ongoing issue. On the panel was Murray Foster, bass player for Canadian folk rock band Great Big Sea.

“His mandate is to make life better for struggling musicians,” Green said. “He was looking for a way to connect musicians with corporations.”

In January, the two launched Choir Nation, a company that helps corporations form company choirs and sing music as team-building exercises. While it’s a for-profit company, part of the goal is to raise money for charity, which led to the Choir Nation Benefit Concert being held Aug. 16 at Lulu Lounge in Toronto.

The event will raise money for Momentum Choir, a non-profit, performance-based choir for individuals with emotional, developmental or intellectual disabilities; MusiCounts, a music education charity; and Unison Benevolent Fund, a charity providing counselling and emergency relief services to the Canadian music community.

“Todd and I are both passionate about music, and we see Choir Nation and our benefit concert as extensions of that passion — creating new opportunities for people to sing in a choir, supporting local musicians and contributing to three music-related charities that we both strongly believe in,” Foster said. “Music is incredibly important to mental well-being, and choir singing is really fun — Choir Nation is a vehicle for us to bring these benefits to as many people as possible.”

Foster will host the evening, which will include musical performances from Devin Cuddy and Miranda Mulholland, who will both sing with backup choirs formed by Choir Nation groups from two Toronto-based companies.

There will also be a large silent auction with signed memorabilia from Canadian bands, ticket packages and a Ron Sexsmith-autographed guitar.

“I’m thrilled with how the research we’re doing at Brock has led to an event like this that will support three excellent music-related charities,” said Green, adding Brock students are also gaining hands-on learning experience through working with Choir Nation.

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