Julia Saar

Julia placed first in her solo category at the Kiwanis Music Festival in Calgary, Alberta in 2001. Over the years she received other awards for solo performances and as a member of the Calgary Girls Choir. She also captivated the audience at the Estonian-Canadian Centennial in Stettler, Alberta in 1999. Julia's grandparents were born in Estonia but were forced to leave their homeland during the Second World War. They later immigrated to Canada where they settled in the Toronto area. Toronto is home to Canada's largest Estonian population and Julia's grandparents were active in the local Estonian community. Her grandparents moved to Calgary in 1999.

Julia attended Calgary's Estonian supplementary school where her father volunteered as a teacher on occasion. Although Julia does not speak Estonian she has learned to sing numerous songs in the language. Julia performed in Estonian at the Stettler Centennial celebration in 1999.

Julia has been a member of the Calgary Girls Choir. Under the direction of Elaine Quilchini, the choir was invited to compete in the world-famous Llangollen International Eisteddfodd in Wales; They placed second and third in two separate categories. In 2000 Julia won the Silver medal for Grace 7 voice exams, achieving the highest mark awarded by the Royal Conservatory of Music. Further, she achieved a number of first place awards in various solo voice categories at the Calgary Kiwanis Festival over the years. In 2008 for example, she was awarded first place in the Solo Opera Aria category. As of 2008 Julia continues to study voice at the Mount Royal Conservatory of Music. She is simultaneously in her third year of chemical engineering at the University of Calgary.

Alberta's Estonian Heritage