Roots and Shoots Music Education Program

Roots and Shoots is a music education outreach program run by the Chan Centre for the Performing Arts for under-resourced Vancouver area elementary schools.

The program offers children from a broad range of socio-economic realities and backgrounds rare opportunities to experience world music and learn about the diverse cultures from performing artists. The program engages up to six schools each year, offering a concert held in the Chan Centre as well as six hours of workshops held in each school. During the pandemic, Roots and Shoots is being offered in a special digital format.

To encourage a sense of community, Roots and Shoots invites entire schools to participate and experience the world-class performances together. Past Roots and Shoots artists have included: Masabo, Kokoma African Heritage Ensemble, Dancers of Damelahamid, Cheondoong, Uzume Taiko, Ache Brasil, V’ni Dansi, and Cristina Pato.

“Many of the students in our district are not familiar with a spectacular concert hall like the Chan Centre and feel a sense of surprise and amazement at the venue. When they see, listen to, and experience cultural performances that are out of their ordinary experience, they are pushing the boundaries of their awareness and understanding.”
Peggy Bochun, Fine Arts Coordinator, Vancouver School Board

How can your school become involved?

The Roots and Shoots program is offered at no charge to participating schools. It is funded by the Chan Endowment Fund of the University of British Columbia, the Vancouver School Board, and private donors.

If you are a teacher/administrator at a Vancouver-area elementary school or an artist interested in participating in Roots and Shoots or if you are interested in making a financial donation to the program, please contact Caitlin McKee at

The  Roots and Shoots program is generously supported by the Government of Canada, the Chan Endowment Fund at UBC, the Vancouver School Board, and the Chan Family Foundation.
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