The Current

Soprano Measha Brueggergosman on why she chose Ave Maria to remember the victims of Nova Scotia shooting

Juno Award-winning soprano Measha Brueggergosman recorded a version of Ave Maria for the Nova Scotia Remembers vigil on Friday. She tells us why she chose that song.

'I know that I have something that can bring real comfort,' says singer

Measha Brueggergosman sings Ave Maria

3 years ago
Duration 3:20
Juno Award-winning soprano Measha Brueggergosman recorded this version of Ave Maria for the Nova Scotia Remembers vigil on Friday. (Vocals: M. Brueggergosman, Video/audio: J. Vernon, Guitar: R. Piltch)

Read Story Transcript

When a tragedy like the mass shooting in Nova Scotia strikes, Canadian soprano Measha Brueggergosman knows she can use her singing voice to help those in pain.

"My first instinct is I feel helpless, just like everybody else. But I know that I have something that can bring real comfort," said the Fredericton, N.B., opera singer and recording artist.

"I know that my voice is a gift from God, I know that it really is just mine to steward over, and I can't be stingy with it," she told The Current's Matt Galloway. 

"It's meant to be given to those who maybe can't voice, in the way that I do, this collective pain we all share."

Brueggergosman has recorded a version of Ave Maria for Friday's vigil to commemorate the 22 people killed in last weekend's rampage. The service will be broadcast on CBC Radio, CBC-TV and

"When I recorded the Ave Maria for the families affected by this massacre, my own included, I really wanted to put [a song] out there that would call to mind the services that we can't congregate for, the gatherings that we can't be a part of," she said.

She thinks grieving communities can start to rebuild by reaching out to one another.

"I'm not somebody you can be like: 'Rah, rah, let's just pretend this isn't painful' because it is painful," she told Galloway.

But she added that "in reaching for each other, [we] often fulfil the need that we lack."

"The joy that will come as a result of reconnecting in a real way — just because you wanted to call someone, just because you wanted to hear their voice, just because you knew that they were on their own — I think is what is going to rebuild us."

Written by Padraig Moran. Produced by Caro Rolando.


To encourage thoughtful and respectful conversations, first and last names will appear with each submission to CBC/Radio-Canada's online communities (except in children and youth-oriented communities). Pseudonyms will no longer be permitted.

By submitting a comment, you accept that CBC has the right to reproduce and publish that comment in whole or in part, in any manner CBC chooses. Please note that CBC does not endorse the opinions expressed in comments. Comments on this story are moderated according to our Submission Guidelines. Comments are welcome while open. We reserve the right to close comments at any time.

Become a CBC Account Holder

Join the conversation  Create account

Already have an account?