Local musicians are coming to kick cancer — hard

Manitoba Musicians Kick Cancer, a fundraising event in support of CancerCare’s Challenge for Life fundraiser, is coming to the Bulldog Event Center.


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Mandy Ducharme is bringing a stacked

lineup of musicians to the Bulldog Event Center on May 28, for a show that’s part of a fundraising campaign for CancerCare Manitoba’s Challenge for Life.

The show is called Winnipeg Musicians Kick Cancer — and the name couldn’t be more accurate for the kind of show visitors can expect when they walk into the Main Street venue.

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Mandy Ducharme is pictured with her guitar, ‘Cash.’ Everyone she knows is familiar with the instrument’s name, she says..

Ducharme, the singer who is organizing the entire event, is a member of the Manitoba Country Music Association, and her latest single, That’s Where I’ll Be, was released earlier this year. She started her music career in Red Deer, Alta., but has “ended up back here.”

Ducharme said this is the third fundraising event she’s put together. The first two supported Ukrainian charities in the wake of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine, and raised more than $5,000.

“As singers, as entertainers, we have a voice to shine lights on situations,” she said. “We have a voice, and any positive stuff we can make can help out.”

Despite the daunting task of arranging fundraisers, Ducharme is thankful for the fact that she’s well-known in the local community and has made a number of friends in the city.

That also means the show will feature a wide variety of music. From fiddlers to jazz piano, saxophone to country, many different musicians are coming to support the cause — a cause that Ducharme says is very human, just as music is.

“Everybody’s lives have been touched by cancer, including mine,” she said. “(The show) is for the people.”

One name Ducharme is proud to have on the bill is that Morgan Grace, a 16-year-old fiddler from Selkirk, Man., who’s recently been impressing many in the Manitoban music community.

The event welcomes some other big local names too, such as Howard Lavitt and Dylan Gaudry.

Ducharme says that it’s sometimes tough to wrangle a big group of musicians together, but she said everyone involved has been helpful, giving her confidence to complete the task.

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Mandy Ducharme has done two fundraising concerts prior to Manitoba Musicians Kick Cancer, both for different charities supporting Ukraine.

“They want to donate their time,” she said.

Ducharme’s fundraising goal is $1,000 and she’s currently over $300. Tickets for the show are just $10, to maximize the amount of people at the concert and to avoid making the prices too daunting.

“Everything helps,” she said. “I don’t want to disappoint anybody and not make that mark.”

However, she’s confident that she’ll surpass it. It’s “the bare minimum” she can do to support the cause, she said.

Tickets can be purchased at Eventbrite.ca, or at the door on May 28. Showtime is 3 p.m. All ticket proceeds will go towards Challenge for Life and CancerCare Manitoba. The event will also feature a silent auction and 50/50 draw.

More information on CancerCare Manitoba and Challenge for Life can be found online at cancercarefdn.mb.ca

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