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GCVI choir to use brush with rock stardom to help raise funds for worthy cause

The choir will be performing with Foreigner for the second time later this year and is using it as motivation to raise funds for charity
GCVI students perform with Foreigner in 2018. Supplied photo.

When Guelph CVI teacher and choir leader Lane Osborne found out the rock band Foreigner was coming back to the area, she decided it is a perfect opportunity to reach out to the band to have her students perform with them one more time.

Foreigner agreed and the GCVI choir has also added a noble cause to the experience by using the hit to raise funds for charity. 

They will perform on stage with the band at Kitchener's Centre In The Square on Sept. 3.

Last year, 25 students sang the choir part of Foreigner’s 1984 worldwide hit I Want To Know What Love Is with the band.

This time, the students decided to forgo the $500 the band paid them to perform and instead fundraise for a charity close to Foreigner’s heart called Shriners Hospitals for Children, a non-profit charity with 22 facilities across North America that provides specialty care.

Earlier this year, the band officially recorded a new version of I Want To Know What Love Is and donated it to the Shriners Hospitals for Children featuring the children of the hospital in the music video.

The band announced that all proceeds from the song’s sales will go directly to Shriners Hospitals for Children.

By the GCVI students choosing to forego payment this time, Osborne says it makes it much more meaningful for the kids and for the band.

“I think in general, the kids last time had an awesome time and they realized how special the experience was to perform for them and use their talent to raise money for something bigger than themselves,” says Osborne.

In a statement on behalf of Foreigner, Manager of Foreigner's band, Phil Carson says they are thrilled to have GCVI singing with the band and also fundraise for a cause that is near and dear to their hearts. In this case, specifically The Shriners Hospital for Children in Montreal. 

"This amazing fundraising plan was the choir’s idea and we are very thankful to them for their efforts and enthusiasm.  We welcome the choir members and choir director Lane Osborne with open arms!”

Osborne says feedback from the community has been tremendous.

“They're very inspired by it especially because the kids are raising money for the Shriners foundation and forgoing payment,” says Osborne.

“The community is like, ‘these kids get it, they understand how important it is to use their talents for something bigger.’”

The choir also started a GoFundMe page and have raised $400 out of their $2,000 goal. They will also be hosting a car wash in the GCVI parking lot June 27 from 2:30 p.m. to 5 p.m.

Osborne says many alumni have gotten in touch with the school to buy tickets to see Foreigner in concert.

“They said they were really jealous because they were in high school in the 80s and never had the opportunity to do that so for a community its very exciting and I think a lot of people who were around when foreigner was in their heyday are very appreciative of the fact that this is literally once in a lifetime thing that you get to do again.

The GCVI choir has been around for six years and their talent has taken the band to perform around the world including England last year and the MusicFest Nationals this year in Ottawa.

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Anam Khan

About the Author: Anam Khan

Anam Khan is a journalist who covers numerous beats in Guelph and Wellington County that include politics, crime, features, environment and social justice
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