A Calgarian who sings only for pleasure is off to the Karaoke World Championships in Helsinki, Finland, after racking up Canadian and regional wins and she says it's about fun more than anything else.

"Personally, I am not trying to pursue a career in music, it is just something I have always loved to do for fun," April Yue told The Homestretch.

"It fulfills that artistic side of my brain where I can feel really good about what I am doing because I get to do something that I love and then go back to my day job."

April Yue

April Yue is off to represent Canada in the Karaoke World Championships in Helsinki. (Susan Holzman/CBC)

Yue moved to Calgary from Toronto about five years ago and immediately noticed something different about the karaoke playlists in Alberta.

"There is definitely a lot more country I would say, which is awesome because I am trying to learn more country songs," she explained.

Yue says she's been singing most of her life, but took it outside the family home about seven years ago.

Always had music in the house

"I have been singing since 2010 officially, meaning out in public, but I have probably been singing since I was little. My parents did a lot of karaoke at home, so I would sing along with them," she said. 

"We always had music in the house. Being in the scene here though, that is a pretty new thing for me, just because I only moved here five years ago. I don't have a lot of friends here that sing so it was kind of awkward and shy for me to start going to karaoke pubs.

"My husband will sing with at home with me, but he will never, ever go on stage and sing in public, so that was a pretty new thing for me to go out and take a chance."

Yue says it's great for her self esteem, in part because fellow singers are usually kind.

"To be on stage, you just kind of get lost for a moment in that song. You have that moment where you are on your own just doing what you love," she said.

"None of us are doing it to outshine the other or take centre stage. I get to sing as if I can be a star for five seconds and I don't have to care about what anyone thinks. I just let loose and I enjoy myself.

"You really do feel like a superstar at times. Being on stage, just singing on your own, that is the most rewarding thing."

Yue will represent Canada at the world championships in Helsinki, which start on Tuesday.


With files from The Homestretch