Canadian Northern Economic Development Agency

Canadian Northern Economic Development Agency

October 19, 2010 13:00 ET

Canada and Yukon Make Western Canadian Music Awards in Whitehorse Possible

WHITEHORSE, YUKON--(Marketwire - Oct. 19, 2010) - The Western Canadian Music Awards (WCMA) Breakout West event will be held in Yukon from October 20-23, 2011, thanks to investments made by the Governments of Canada and Yukon.

The Honourable John Duncan, Minister of the Canadian Northern Economic Development Agency (CanNor), and the Honourable Jim Kenyon, Yukon's Minister of Economic Development today announced a combined investment of $390,000. CanNor's investment of $245,000 and the Yukon government's investment of $145,000 will enable Yukon to host the WCMA's Breakout West Yukon 2011 award ceremony. This will be the first time the awards have been held north of 60. 

"Our Government is proud to invest in this event which will increase tourism and economic opportunities for the North," said Minister Duncan, who is also Minister of Indian Affairs and Northern Development, and Federal Interlocutor for Metis and Non-Status Indians. "Breakout West Yukon 2010 will also be a great venue for Yukon musicians to showcase their talent."

"The Western Canadian Music Awards will shine a spotlight on Yukon and attract national and international attention to Canadian musicians, artists and cultural performers," said the Honourable Leona Aglukkaq, Member of Parliament for Nunavut, Minister Responsible for the North and Minister of Health.

"The Government of Yukon is both pleased and honoured to host Breakout West Yukon 2011," Economic Development Minister Jim Kenyon said. "Along with the significant economic benefits this event will bring to Yukon through tourism and local business activity, this event is the perfect forum for artists and music industry professionals to feature their creative abilities. It is also an occasion to celebrate achievement through an awards show that honours Canada's western musical talent."

"We're incredibly excited to hold the Breakout West conference and festival and the Western Canadian Music Awards in Whitehorse in 2011," said Rick Fenton, Executive Director of the Western Canadian Music Alliance. "After our site visits, we were extremely impressed with the venues, facilities and of course the people! Whitehorse and the Yukon embody the same spirit of independence and creativity that make our western Canadian artists and business professionals some of the finest anywhere."

The Government of Canada's investment for this project was made possible through CanNor's Strategic Investments in Northern Economic Development (SINED) program, which focuses on long-term economic growth, economic diversification and capacity building in the three territories. SINED is one of several economic development programs within CanNor. CanNor is responsible for coordinating and delivering Canada's economic development activities across the North, and for related policy development, research and advocacy.

The Government of Yukon is supporting this initiative through the Yukon Film & Sound Commission, which assists Yukon sound recording professionals in developing viable careers and businesses.

For copies of CanNor news releases, visit:

To learn more about Canada's Economic Action Plan, visit: and for more information on Canada's Northern Strategy, visit:

Contact Information

  • Office of the Honourable John Duncan
    Michelle-Jamali Paquette
    Press Secretary
    Canadian Northern Economic Development Agency (CanNor)
    Erin Macpherson
    Communications Advisor
    Government of Yukon Contact
    Samantha Paterson
    Economic Development Communications Manager
    Western Canadian Music Alliance Contact
    Rick Fenton
    Executive Director