Ottawa Newcomer Youth Music Awards Celebration: Showcasing Immigrant Talent and Fostering Community Engagement

In celebration of World Refugee Day and Welcoming Ottawa Week (WOW), the Michaëlle Jean Foundation has collaborated with the sponsors, Dominion-Chalmers United Church, and the Catholic Centre for Immigrants to proudly present the first-ever Ottawa Newcomer Youth Music Awards on June 20th, 2024.

The primary objective of this initiative is to create a vibrant platform for talented immigrant artists, nurturing their aspirations of becoming professional musicians, while fostering cultural exchange and community engagement. This monumentous event, held at one of Ottawa’s most historic music venues, is a testament to our mission towards supporting the amplification of youth efforts towards the arts.    


The Ottawa Newcomer Youth Music Awards Celebration promises to be an inspiring event, showcasing the rich diversity of talent within Ottawa’s immigrant community while providing invaluable support and opportunities for growth. Join us in celebrating the vibrant contributions of immigrant artists within our community. 

  • Workshop At 5pm on June 20th at Dominion-Chalmers, internationally renowned South African musician, Lorraine Klaasen, will conduct a workshop on music and performance with the award recipients. This workshop is open to any youth (18-30) in the community interested in performance and is free to register.
  • Concert  At 7pm on June 20th at Dominion-Chalmers, a captivating hour-long concert will feature performances by Ash Ravens and the award recipients alongside Lorraine Klaasen, celebrating the artistic excellence of newcomer youth in the Ottawa community. The concert will be a ticketed event, with a limited number of free registrations available for clients of the Catholic Centre for Immigrants.
  • Reception Following the concert, a lively reception will take place in Woodside Hall of Dominion-Chalmers from 8pm to 9:30pm. Attendees will enjoy refreshments and additional live music, further fostering connections within the community.

Further details and registrations 


Lorraine Klaasen

Lorraine Klaasen: Internationally acclaimed and Juno-winner Lorraine Klaasen, daughter of South African Jazz icon Thandie Klaasen, is renowned for preserving the classic sound of Township Music, a distinctive genre synonymous with South Africa. Lorraine’s performances span prestigious venues like the Festival International de Jazz de Montréal and Festival International Nuits D’Afrique, alongside successful tours across the US and Canada, solidifying her status as a global music ambassador. 

Ash Rvens by @insta.shamuna

Ash Ravens: With his excellent guitar skills that help cover the diverse genres in his music from rock to country to instrumentals, Ash Ravens is creating something truly unique and carving his very own niche in the Canadian music scene. Born in Bangladesh, Ash has been trotting all around the world – living and making music in LA, USA; and Melbourne Australia, so far. Calling Ottawa home since 2021, Ravens has already co-written and recorded with Canadian rock icon Bif Naked and tabla maestro Ritesh Das, cellist Raphael Weinroth-Browne, JUNO winning producer Dean Watson and GRAMMY nominated producer Chris Birkett. Ash’s genre-blurring music ranges from heartfelt ballads to high energy anthems to melodic guitar focused instrumental tunes.

Our partners 

Dominion-Chalmers: Dominion-Chalmers United Church is a community of faith in downtown Ottawa. Known for its rich classical musical tradition and commitment to spiritual enrichment, in recent years the church sold its building to Carleton University to create a Centre for the Performing Arts. Through continuing to hold services and concerts, fund community organizations and facilitate community programs, Dominion-Chalmers United Church is re-discovering its vocation in the heart of Canada’s capital. 

Catholic Centre for Immigrants: The Catholic Centre for Immigrants is dedicated to empowering newcomers, fostering inclusivity, and building a stronger Canadian society. Their mission is to promote and facilitate the reception of newcomers to Canada, sensitizing the community to address their needs and inviting active responses. The Catholic Centre for Immigrants strives to assist newcomers in realizing their full potential in Canadian society. 

Media Contact: 

Nick Veltmeyer
Program Manager 
613 316 3891