Inspiring Minds seeks to broaden awareness and impact of graduate student research, while enhancing transferable skills. Students were challenged to describe their research, scholarship or creative activity in 150 or fewer words to share with our community.

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Composing Music with Canadian Kids for Postpandemic Recovery

“Another one bites the dust!” The theme of Queen’s famous rock hit has been lived out soberingly within Canada’s postpandemic community music world. Years of restricted live singing has devastated the wellbeing of too many musical communities. Where I do my music education doctoral research, groups with vulnerable populations— elders and children—are struggling. Is there a musical solution? My research looks at the postpandemic restart of a community children’s choir in a resource- scare Ontario region, asking: Could composing and performing their own music contribute to the well being of both children and adult staff? I use my theory of relational composition and Seligman’s wellbeing PERMA model to examine Positive Emotion, Engagement, Relationships, Meaning, and Accomplishment in new choral activities in which I have facilitated new songs to be presented in concert. With wellbeing evident in five key areas, this is one group that isn’t biting the dust!

Fiona Evison
PhD candidate, Music
Don Wright Faculty of Music - Western University

Betty Anne Younker

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Fiona Evison is completing her PhD in Music Education at Western University where she is furthering research on her theory of relational composition, as well as on the ongoing impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on community music-making. As an active music educator, accompanist, choral conductor, and composer, she views community music as a vital activity bringing joy, connection, and well-being that everyone should be able to experience, regardless of age or ability. Fiona is on the board of the Association of Canadian Women Composers, is Editor for the ACWC Journal, and is an executive member of the Grey-Bruce Royal Canadian College of Organists. She was the 2022 First Place winner of the Canadian Music Educators' Association Dr. Frankin Churchley Graduate Essay Competition, and her work is published by Routledge Press, Oxford University Press, Journal of Popular Music Education (2023), Transform Journal (2023), Canadian Music Educator’s Journal (2022), and Religions (2022), with additional publications in the pipeline. 

Please explore some of Fiona’s work on Google Scholar, and connect with her through ResearchGate or email at

View Fiona's work as it appears in the Inspiring Minds Digital Collection:

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