Calgary –The Stampede Talent Search named their 36th Champion on Saturday night.

Twenty-one-year-old Lizzie Munson wowed the audience and most importantly, the judges, with her interpretation of “Heart Shaped Box/ Smells Like Teen Spirit”. Lizzie’s haunting cello playing, along with her strong vocals, was an exciting and entertaining act that took first place out of 12 finalists.


The first runner-up was Craig Henderson.

Second runner-up was Zasha Rabie.

The third runner-up was Kate Stevens.

The Don Welden Most Promising Performer award was presented to Jana McDonald.


This year, more than 300 amateur Canadian youth performers demonstrated their singing, dancing, acting, musical and variety performance abilities during auditions for this annual showcase of talent. Sixty-seven senior performers (aged 13 to 21) were selected to compete in front of our panel of professional judges. In addition, 12 junior performers (aged six to 12) performed over the eight days of competition.

“The calibre of talent in this year’s Talent Search was extremely high,” says Andrew Bunka, chair, Stampede Talent Search committee. “We will likely look back on this day and realize how privileged we were that these talented performers made Stampede Talent Search a stop on their creative journey.”

Canada-wide registration for the 2017 Stampede Talent Search will begin in March 2017 and auditions will be held in May. Additional information and online registration is available on the Stampede Talent Search website:

Additional professional photography of the finalists, and Munson’s winning performance, available by request. Photo credit: Benjamin Laird Arts & Photo.

The mission of the Stampede Talent Search is to discover, develop, encourage and showcase young amateur performers. This program is just one of the ways the Calgary Stampede fulfills its commitment to provide youth with the opportunity to develop strong roots in their culture and heritage through programs that enhance personal growth, citizenship and education.


About the Calgary Stampede

The Calgary Stampede celebrates the people, the animals, the land, the traditions and the values that make up the unique spirit of the west. The Calgary Stampede contributes to the quality of life in Calgary and southern Alberta through our world-renowned Stampede, year-round facilities, western events and several youth and agriculture programs. Exemplifying the theme We’re Greatest Together; we are a volunteer-supported, not-for-profit community organization that preserves and promotes western heritage and values. All revenue is reinvested into Calgary Stampede programs and facilities.


For more information, please contact:

Gay Robinson

Stampede Talent Search committee

403.660. 6133