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Hub Staff

A fundraising concert is set to take place on June 22 at the Saugeen District Secondary School (SDSS) Cafetorium. The concert was arranged by Josh Lesperance, a Grade 12 SDSS student and accomplished tuba player. His aim is to raise funds to help him attend the Eastman School of Music at the University of Rochester.

This prestigious institute is recognized worldwide for its music program and after a memorable lesson with the tuba professor at Eastman in 2017, Lesperance put this school on the top of his list of potential post secondary schools to help him pursue a career in music. He knew it was an ambitious dream based on the small size of the conservatory. Only 13% of applicants are accepted each year and there are only two positions for tuba players. The challenge was part of what fuelled his dream and Josh has worked hard to make this aspiration a reality.

Lesperance has been a part of countless school and community bands, had been involved with several musical productions and was honoured to play in the National Youth Band of Canada, the Denis Wick Canadian Wind Orchestra and the Ontario Provincial Honour Band.

In a phone interview with Trish Lesperance, Josh's mother, she explained that even with a scholarship to help cover a portion of the costs, it’s still a significant expense for the family.

“It is a really big financial stretch,” admitted Trish May 3. Her son continues to apply for as many scholarships as he can, but she said that they are restricted as only a select few will cover schools outside of Canada. The concert is a way for the community to help support Josh’s musical goals and he is hopeful that this will also provide him with a way to give back to the community by turning the concert into an annual event to help future students who find themselves in a similar position.

SPECTACULAR! will be held at 7 p.m. June 22 at the SDSS Cafetorium and includes music from the Noodle Factory Jazz Project, Get Back, SDSS Big Band and more. Admission is by donation and there will be a silent auction with all proceeds going towards Josh Lesperance and his pursuit of music education at Eastman School of Music.

Edited to add: A Go Fund Me page has been launched. Find it hereThe event can be found on Facebook here.

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