Meadow Lake’s Zipporah Dale Pancho, 20, is ready to take her love for music to a larger stage. Recently, Zipporah spoke with Northern Pride about her upcoming performance at the 2021 Telemiracle event in Saskatoon, her love for music and her plans for the holidays.

Q: Are you excited to perform at the upcoming Telemiracle Countdown Show in Saskatoon?
A: I am more than excited. It is a privilege to impart my talent in the community. I have performed at Telemiracle locally for the past three years in Meadow Lake. This year, a family friend reminded us of the upcoming audition for Telemiracle in Saskatoon. It is quite different from other years because of COVID-19. My audition was recorded and sent to the Telemiracle committee. When selected to perform, I was asked to record my performance once again in Saskatoon. The performances for Telemiracle will be all pre-recorded as a countermeasure to the pandemic.

Q: Tell me about your musical/performing background.
A: I love singing. I always looked up to my mother since I was little and tried my best to vocalize and be on the right note. Singing, for me, is another form of communication that connects and inspires people. This reason always stayed with me and motivated me to sing with heart and soul, hoping I would be able to comfort people with my voice. I always tried to perform when given a chance in school or the community. My first competitive performance was in a Filipino Christmas party held here in Meadow Lake where I won first place, and my most recent was at the Meadow Lake Winter Festival earlier this year where I won first place again. My first big event will be Telemiracle in Saskatoon.

Q: Why do you believe Telemiracle is so important?
A: When I first heard about Telemiracle and how it is a fundraising event to help people who are in need, I immediately signed up to support the show held in our school during my first few months in Canada. During that show, I got to learn more about the cause and movement of Telemiracle. I was inspired and touched the community helps hand-in-hand to raise money to help people in need. I am grateful to be allowed to use my talent as an instrument in this cause.

Q: Tell me more about your family.
A: We’re the Pancho family, and we’re from the Philippines. There are four members in our family; my older brother, my mom and my dad and me. My parents weren’t with us all the time as they were Overseas Filipino Workers (OFW). My dad was the first one who came to Canada and was later able to process our permanent residency. Now we’re blessed to be spending time together as a whole family in Canada. Before the pandemic, I loved spending my time with church activities and practicing new songs.

Q: Do you and your family have any special plans for the holidays?
A: Christmas is the best time of the year, but I still haven’t adjusted to winter’s freezing breeze yet. This season gives my family warmth in an emotional way, and joy. Christmas is when we remember the birth of the Lord Jesus Christ. Traditionally, my family starts to decorate and enjoy the Christmas season during the “ber” months – September to December and up until Valentine’s Day. I know this might sound like a long time, but we celebrate Christmas all year round back in the Philippines. The only difference we have this Christmas is not having guests due to the pandemic. Still, I believe it is important to remind ourselves Christmas is the time where we celebrate with our loved ones, family and together be reminded what the spirit of Christmas is – the pure love of Christ.