Sister Dorothy

Sister Dorothy


Media arts, Music

Grade Level: k, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12

Language: english

Regions: Norman, Parklands, Interlake, Westman, Central Plains, Pembina Valley, Eastman, Capital Region



Since 2003 Schools across Manitoba have been awarded Artist Residencies with Sister Dorothy. She brings a program of music performance and songwriting to Northern, rural and First Nation communities who may not have a music program. Students learn to play instruments such as recorder and guitar, sing in a choir, and perform in a final concert for schoolmates, family, and the wider community.
Sister Dorothy has recorded and produced 10 full-length CDs and over 30 videos of her own songs.
She performs regularly in Winnipeg and across Canada at festivals, concert series, schools and hospitals and coordinates the Guitar program at International Music Camp.
Sister Dorothy has extensive experience working with First Nations Elders, native language speakers, teachers and students, helping children learn and retain their language and appreciate their heritage. She collaborated with students and teachers at Sagkeeng First Nation to produce 2 CDs and 5 videos.
She enjoys sharing her art.

Project Samples

Songwriting for Beginners

Artist Sister Dorothy will collaborate with students and teachers in helping them create songs to express their hopes and dreams. Using her own compositions and songs from the students's playlists, together they will study the building blocks of songs, how they fit together, and how rhythm and melody enhance the expression of lyrics. They will discuss likes and dislikes with a view to articulating their own vision. Students will learn basic music notation and begin to read and write music. Percussion, piano, guitar, recorder and any instruments available will be utilized. Students will learn to listen, create and perform. Students will share what they have learned at a final performance for the entire school, families and surrounding community.

From Ear to Eye - Creating Music Videos

Artist Sister Dorothy will collaborate with small groups of students to create original songs, add instruments, develop visual concepts, rehearse, record the music videos on cell phones, and share the results with their peers in a final school assembly. Schools may wish to post the videos on their websites or YouTube.


Sister Dorothy encouraged our students to not only come out of their comfort zones to perform, but also to explore their language of Ojibwe and to write songs and play musical instruments. This will not only lead to the preservation of the language and culture, it will build bridges of healing and reconciliation. Her vision never falters and no matter the challenges Sister Dorothy consistently remains a positive role model, implementing a highly dynamic program with students and staff.

—Ms. Heather Dram, E.C.E.,B.A.,B. Ed, Sagkeeng Anicinabe High be HIgh S

As an educator of Early Years children I was inspired by Sister Dorothy's energy and enthusiasm for sharing her talent with our students. I also enjoyed watching students who don't always see themselves as musicians develop their confidence as performers. The students genuinely enjoyed every aspect of the program. We heard them singing these new songs on the playground or in their bus lines at the end of the day.

—Lisa Hildebrand Chrystal City Early Years School

It was such a pleasure having you in our school this week! You have such an amazing talent and connection with the kids. They all enjoyed it immensely.

—Miniota School students and staff