Action from the 2017 Angel Awards, held at the Rotary Centre. - Image: Facebook

Angel Awards: More than a talent competition

Kelowna event is a fundraising initiative for juvenile idiopathic arthritis

It’s the talent show with a big heart and even bigger talent.

The Angel Award Talent Competition and Gala Showcase returns to Kelowna for its sixth season in support of juvenile idiopathic arthritis, a serious and potentially fatal form of arthritis that affects three in every 1,000 children.

Angel Award founder, Louise Boisvert, says the competition continues to grow, showcasing the best in young B.C. performers, but more importantly, raises the awareness of a disease that is generally viewed as an “old person’s” disease.

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“The expensive medications and pain that these children endure is debilitating,” said Boisvert. “As a parent of a young daughter who suffers from this disease, I feel very passionate about making Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis a disease that is only mentioned in the history books.”

Boisvert, a talented singer and dancer, began the Angel Awards in honour of her daughter, who continues to fight the disease.

The talent competition is open to gifted young performers aged 9 to 24 from throughout Southern British Columbia. The competition culminates on May 20, 2018 with the Gala Showcase at the Rotary Centre for the Arts in Kelowna.

Judged by industry professionals, the top 10 selected entries will compete for a cash prize. The Gala Showcase also features performances from a variety of professional music acts including this year’s headliner, Ari Neufeld.

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“Arthritis Research Canada is thrilled to be the beneficiary of Angel Award,” said scientific director, Dr. John Esdaile. “With one in six Canadians now affected by the pain and disability of arthritis, growing awareness and support of arthritis research has never been more important. Arthritis is ageless, impacting Canadians young and old. We are grateful to have Angel Award’s support and together we are making arthritis research a priority and reduce the burden of arthritis for everyone.”

Interested competitors can find entry details at AngelAward.ca. Categories include Solo and Group Vocal, Solo and Group Dance and Solo and Group Instrumental.

Proceeds raised from the Talent Competition and Gala Showcase will go to Arthritis Research Canada.

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