A recent graduate of the Community Choir Leadership Training (CCLT) program in Victoria, BC, Vanessa Lindsay-Botten is the proud founder and director of You Gotta Sing!  With over 20 years’ professional experience as a soprano, pianist and harpist, Vanessa provides expert song leadership within a variety of community, corporate and sacred settings.  Vanessa lives out her passion for music as both an engaging performer and skilled music educator.

“Singing is our birthright — we celebrate our unique sound together and create positive change in the world through joyous song!”

Over the past 5 years, our collective voices have raised both awareness and funds for the Northwood Community Centre, Voices for Hospice, Gottingen Street for Scott Jones, Hope for Wildlife, Feed Nova Scotia, Sleeping Children Around the World, the Mi’kmaw Native Friendship Centre, the Ecology Action Centre, the Youth Project, Halifax Mission to Seafarers, Phoenix Youth Programs, Women’s Foundation Nepal, the Halifax Refugee Clinic, Adsum House for Women & Children, Shelter Nova Scotia, and the Stephen Lewis Foundation Grandmothers to Grandmothers Campaign.  We have provided a safe place to gather and sing together, in an accepting and positive environment, nurturing connection and community one song at a time. To ensure that our choir is accessible to all, the YGS bursary program continues to offer unlimited free or sliding scale registration to anyone with financial challenges that might otherwise make community choir impossible. 

We have enjoyed community singing at Keshen Goodman Public Library, Alderney Gate Library, and Halifax Central Library; led lively youth in song at the World Harmony Run in 2012; wove our singing into Claire Miller’s mesmerizing Christmas storytelling concert in 2012; spread a little joy at United Memorial’s fundraisers, a Grand Piano fundraiser for St. Luke’s United church; and we joyfully took to the Main Stage at the Halifax Multicultural Festival 2013 and 2014; and we were special musical guests on Global Morning Live and CBC Radio’s Information Morning!  

We continue to look for ways to support and engage our local and global communities.

Our membership has grown from the original 19 singers from the summer of 2011 to our present membership of 375 current singers and 330 alumni.  

As we move into 2016, my goal is to be an even more visible and audible example of the power of harmony to create positive change in the world.  We love that our audiences are pooled from our incredibly supportive and encouraging friends, family, and choir alumni (we do so love having you at our concerts!!!)  Audiences drawn from a wider pool will help YGS to thrive as a positive, uplifting, shining example of the healing magic of singing in an inclusive community.

As I continually discover at each and every rehearsal, concert, and community event:  singing together makes miracles happen!  


 “Ipharadisi” ~ with our heart beat drummer and soul friend, Heather Pentz

With abundant gratitude for all those who say “YES” to YGS,