Singer Alisa Louise is the recipient of this year’s June Lythgoe Scholarship, which supports the vocal arts in the West Kootenay. Photo: Bill Metcalfe

Selkirk student singer wins June Lythgoe Scholarship

The scholarship assists vocal artists in the West Kootenay

A Selkirk College music student has won the $1,000 June Lythgoe Scholarship for 2020 given annually by the Amy Ferguson Institute.

Alisa Louise, 27, is a singer from the Lower Mainland who moved to Nelson last year to take the Selkirk College music program.

She told the Star she’s been “singing since I could talk” but it took her a while to decide to commit by going to school.

“Eventually I reached a point where I realized I want to do this full time, so it took a leap of faith. And I’m really glad I did.”

The Amy Ferguson Institute is a Nelson non-profit organization founded by the Lythgoe family in 2000. The organization’s mission is to promote and support vocal arts in the West Kootenay region. The scholarship was created when June Lythgoe passed away in 2006.

Alisa said she got serious about singing as a teenager when her YouTube videos got a lot of attention.

“I went from singing in my room to it being very public. Then I realized, okay, maybe I can actually do this thing.”

So she began singing Latin music, Italian music and dance music regularly in an Italian restaurant and with friends in bands and in talent shows.

At Selkirk College this past year she’s been learning and performing pop, R&B and jazz.

The scholarship will help with expenses for her upcoming second year.

“I am extremely grateful to have been chosen by this incredible organization that enriches people’s lives with the beauty of music,” Alisa said.

“This scholarship will ease my financial worries and enable me to fully immerse myself in the music program and improve my craft. I can’t thank them enough.”

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