About Us

Vision, passion and forward thinking created the foundation of Cantiamo Choirs of Ottawa today; an environment that understands the natural desire of human expression through singing; one that nurtures musical and artistic development of young voices; and where integrity, empathy and self-confidence forms part of the development of each young person.

Our choristers perform a diverse repertoire, receive an enriched music and choral education, and build a lifelong passion for music. Since its inception in 2003, Cantiamo has championed Canadian composers and commissioned over 35 Canadian compositions. We also tirelessly advocate for music in schools and singing in every child’s life, every day!

Cantiamo welcomes children starting at the age of 5 through to 17. Our motto is music, leadership, and community.

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Our Founding Artistic Director

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Jackie Hawley is the founding Artistic Director of the Cantiamo Choirs of Ottawa. She has conducted and toured internationally with adult, youth and children’s choirs and has been a clinician for choirs and schools throughout Canada for nearly 30 years.

Ms. Hawley works frequently with the Education Department of the National Arts Centre and is the Music Director of the NAC’s 500 voice annual Music Monday Choir. Ms. Hawley is the Founder of the Nipiit-Katittut- Voices United (NKVU) educational engagement project which connects choristers with youth in Iqaluit to build community and promote leadership skills, musical artistry and cultural enlightenment.  Read Jackie’s full bio here.

Our Training Choir Conductor

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Leslie Bricker is an award-winning music educator, with over 35 years of experience directing children’s choirs, Orff ensembles and music theatre. She has designed and implemented Music programs in elementary schools with children from 3-14 years of age in both Ottawa and Toronto, and has recently retired as an elementary music specialist with the Ottawa-Carleton Board of Education. Read Leslie’s full Bio here.

Our Primary Choir Conductor


Kathy Goodsell is an educator with over 25 years of teaching experience. She has taught in the classroom, directed children’s choirs and musical theatre, and organized arts celebrations involving all students and staff at her school, including a collaboration with the Ottawa Chamber Music Society and Cantiamo Choirs of Ottawa on the year-long Listen Up! project.

Kathy is delighted to join the Cantiamo Choirs of Ottawa organization where she will continue to teach and advocate for the importance of music education in the lives of children in a supportive and nurturing learning environment. Read Kathy’s Full Bio Here.

Our Cantiamo Girls Choir & Training Choir Accompanist

Teresa van den Boogaard is an Associate of the Royal Canadian College of Organists, and relishes all opportunities to promote the pipe organ.  In addition to her career as a soloist, Teresa specializes in working with singers, as a coach-accompanist on piano and organ, choral director, arranger-composer, and teacher of musicianship skills.  Read Teresa’s full bio here.




Our Girls Apprentice Choir Accompanist

Dian Wilkie

Dian Wilkie holds a Bachelor of Music degree from the University of Ottawa as well as a Bachelor of Education degree from the University of Toronto (OISE). Since moving to Ottawa with her husband in July of 2014, she has established herself as a teacher, accompanist and performer in Ottawa and the Ottawa Valley.