Lina Allemano is a Toronto based trumpeter, improviser and composer with an established and active career performing, recording and touring internationally. Her unique artistic vision has gained her recognition as being “adventurous, expressive, compelling, forward thinking, inventive, and sophisticated”. As well as fronting her bands LINA ALLEMANO FOUR, TITANIUM TRIO, and the improvising group “N”, she is also a member of many other active creative groups and appears on over 30 recordings including 4 of her own critically acclaimed CDs. She has performed at the prestigious Festival of New Trumpet Music (FONT) in New York City, toured extensively with her band in Canada, USA and Europe, and was recently featured as one of the top innovative trumpeters for the future in DOWNBEAT Magazine
Marcus Boon is a writer, DJ and associate professor of contemporary literature and cultural studies at York University. Boon has written about music for the New Musical Express, Wire, Signal to Noise and others. He is the author of In Praise of Copying and The Road of Excess: A History of Writers on Drugs, editor of America: A Prophecy by Sparrow and wrote the introduction to Walter Benjamin’s On Hashish. He has been DJing and performing for 20 years, including with THEWAVES and with MAMA collectives.
Dawne Carleton is a Toronto-based dance artist who is interested in improvisational structures and the relationships between the senses. Described as a choreographer who is “examining what the art form is… enhanc[ing] our understanding of who and what we are as embodied creatures” (The Dance Current), she also performs, teaches, and works as a creative process facilitator.
Victoria Cheong is a multi-disciplinary artist working in video, installation and performance. Her artistic practice also includes ongoing collaborative work with dancers and musicians, experimentation with textiles and projections and the curation and organization of cross-disciplinary art happenings. She makes music with Wolfgang Nessel as part of HVYWTR and is the Artistic Director of Healing Power Records.
Darren Copeland is an electroacoustic composer and sound designer who has produced work since 1985 for concerts, radio, theatre, dance, and site-specific installation. After studying theatre sound design at Niagara College, he studied electroacoustic composition. He has composed a number of soundtracks for theatre and dance productions in Toronto, including works by Jessica Runge, Danny Grossman Dance Company, Buddies in Bad Times Theatre, and Factory Theatre. Darren Copeland is the Artistic Director of New Adventures in Sound Art, which produces electroacoustic and experimental sound art events in Toronto, Canada, and is the President of the Canadian Association for Sound Ecology.
Charles Davidson fell in love with singing as a treble at All Saints’ Anglican Church in Whitby, where he sang from the age of 8. Now at home in both the classical and musical theatre realms, Charles is in demand as a soloist and ensemble member with the Elora Festival Singers, Toronto Mendelssohn Choir, and the new contemporary ensemble, Choir 21 (Soundstreams). He was a soloist at the opening of the RCM’s Koerner Hall, as part of Beethoven’s ‘Choral Fantasia.’ Charles received an Honours BA (Musical Theatre) from the Guildford School of Acting, UK, and has appeared in shows such as Les Misérables (Thousand Islands Playhouse), West Side Story (Peterborough Showplace) and the Dora award-winning The Children’s Crusade (Luminato). After graduating he had the opportunity to sing as lead tenor with Regent Seven Seas Cruises, touring much of Asia and the Pacific Rim. Most recently he played the title role in Joesph and His Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat for Metropolitan United Church, where he is first tenor lead, and will sing the Evangelist role in Bach’s Christmas Oratorio this fall.
Melissa Fisher is a Toronto based artist working within the realms of sculpture and installation. She received her BFA from OCAD University in 2008 and earlier this year did a three month residency at the Gibraltar Point Centre for the Arts where she met and started collaborating with Aimée Dawn Robinson. Her site specific installations have been featured in window galleries throughout Toronto (Magic Pony/Narwhal, XPACE Cultural Centre, HALO HALO Village), and this past spring she participated in her first exhibition overseas at Sur la Montagne in Berlin. Melissa is interested in current states of reality and the psychological relationship we have with ourselves, our surroundings, objects and other people. She uses basic shapes, geometries and colour to abstract personal ‘realities’ into formulaic visuals.
Nick Fraser has been an active and engaging presence in the Toronto new jazz and improvised music community since he moved there from Ottawa in 1996. He has worked with a veritable “who’s who” of Canadian jazz and improvised music including Mike Murley, John Oswald, Andrew Downing and Lina Allemano. In addition, he has had the opportunity to perform and/or record with such international artists as Donny McCaslin, Marilyn Crispell and Anthony Braxton. Nick’s recorded works as a leader include Owls in Daylight (1997) and Nick Fraser and Justin Haynes are faking it (2004). He co-leads the co-operative group Drumheller with who have released 3 CDs on the Rat-Drifting label. Other projects that occupy Nick regularly are Peripheral Vision, Jayme Stone’s Room of Wonders, the Ugly Beauties (with Marilyn Lerner and Matt Brubeck) and the Lina Allemano Four. Nick is a founding member of The Association of Improvising Musicians of Toronto, a non-profit organization dedicated to the Toronto improvising community.
Alexandra Gelis is a Colombian-Venezuelan visual artist based in Toronto, Canada. She holds an MFA degree from York University, Toronto, Canada. Her work incorporates photography, video, electronics and digital processes, informed by her formal education in Visual Arts. Gelis’ work addresses the use of image relation to topics of displacement, landscape, and politics. One of the prevalent concerns in her work is to unveil the relationship between landscape, history, people, geopolitics and the diverse techniques for achieving subjugation of bodies and population.
Margaret Krawecka is a designer, scenographer and interdisciplinary artist. She completed her Bachelor of Architecture at the University of Toronto (2001) and MA Scenography at Central Saint Martin’s College of Art and Design in London, UK (2005). Her work explores narrative structures and giving form to the invisible or that which cannot be expressed in words. Installations include “Cocoon Garden”, “Changing Room”, “Fragment”, “Kaleidoscope” and “The Hunger”.
Barbara Lindenberg is a Toronto based dancer and choreographer who has presented her work at Tranzac Club (Toronto), Holy Oak (Toronto), Vancouver’s WISE Hall, Nuit Blanche (Toronto), A Month of Sundays (Toronto), Just for Laughs Street Festival (Toronto), Fringe Shanghai (Shanghai), Series 808 Season Finale (Toronto), AWOL Gallery’s wHole exhibition (Toronto), Lab Cabaret (Toronto), Au Revoir Darling (Toronto), and Up Darling (Toronto). Her work has been supported by Toronto Arts Council, Laidlaw Foundation and Canada Council for the Arts.
Maracatu Mar Aberto is an Afro-Brazilian percussion & song troupe that plays Northeastern Brazilian rhythms. Translated to English as the Open Sea, our name represents the aggregated influences that have traveled from Africa to Brazil and onwards to Toronto and beyond.
Juliet Palmer is a composer, sound artist and performer from New Zealand. She moved to New York in 1990 to work with Meredith Monk on her opera Atlas. A clarinettist, vocalist and pianist, she holds a Ph.D. in composition from Princeton University and has a repertoire of interdisciplinary work with writers, choreographers, filmmakers and artists including: Citrus (honourable mention, Prix Ars Electronica, 1994) premiered Soundculture Japan; the dance-opera Flotsam & Jetsam, with choreographer Bill James and filmmaker Nick de Pencier, premiered 2001, Open Ears Festival; the site-specific Slip at the Harrison Baths; and the Dora-nominated a cappella opera Stitch at the 2008 FreeFall Festival/Harbourfront’s World Stage.
Allison Peacock is an artist working with dance, site-specific performance, and video. Her work has been presented at Movement Research at the Judson Church (in collaboration with Victoria Cheong), Extermination Music Night, the Yukon Arts Centre, Danceworks CoWorks, Rhubarb and has been commissioned by the Canada Dance Festival. Currently she completing a Master’s degree in Solo/Dance/Authorship in Berlin, Germany.
Christie Pearson (artistic director) studied architecture at Cornell and Waterloo Universities. As a student designed sets with choreographer Bill James and set designer Michael Levine. Member of the art-activist OCTOBER GROUP (1995-2000). She co-founded of the WADE festival of installation and performance art in 2002, and the performance collective URBANVESSEL in 2005 where she was responsible for the concept, vision and environments for theatre works SLIP and STITCH, and the urban performance FOUR LINES. Editorial board of SCAPEGOAT JOURNAL: Landscape, Architecture, Political Economy since 2009. Co-founded THEWAVES for water-based events in 2006. Her environments amplify our bodies’ relation to the natural and constructed, engaging architecture, urbanism, ecology, theatre, sculpture, installation, poetry, and ritual. Her research in world traditions of public bathing feeds a diverse artistic practice.
Nicole Rampersaud has become an in demand performer in Canada and abroad, known for her unique and versatile musicality in the jazz and improvised music scenes. Past and current collaborators read like a who’s who of today’s leading artists: Anthony Braxton, Bob Brookmeyer, Evan Parker, Rakalam Bob Moses, Django Bates, Marilyn Lerner, Joe Morris and Jean Martin, to name a few. She has also performed in some of the most prestigious venues in North America including: New York’s Lincoln Center, Berklee Performance Center in Boston, and Massey Hall in Toronto.
Jim Ruxton received his M.A.Sc in electrical engineering at the University of Ottawa in 1988. He graduated from the New Media Program at the Ontario College of Art and Design in 1993, where he now teaches. He has worked in Toronto as an inventor, engineer and artist to bring electronics into various fields of the arts. Through his company Cinematronics, Jim has collaborated with numerous Canadian artists and cultural institutions in the fields of installation, performance, theatre, dance and film to create kinetic interactive environments. Jim’s interest in all that is subtle led him to becoming a co-founder of the Subtle Technologies Conference in 1998.
Aimée Dawn Robinson is an improvising dancer, gardener, musician, writer and visual artist. She has performed, studied and taught dance in Canada, the United States, Malaysia and Japan. Aimée is the co-artistic director of Up Darling and the director of multi-disciplinary performance series, A Month of Sundays. Aimée has performed with many improvising musicians and songwriters and solo improvisation as mother drift. Her current research explores the radical political potentials of memory and forgetting in dance, specifically experimental improvising, butoh and Canadian Aboriginal dance. Aimée has participated in butoh workshops with Yoshito Ohno, Yukio Waguri, Denise Fuijiwara, Joan Laage, SU-EN and Min Tanaka.
Alex Samaras is quickly becoming one of Canada’s leading vocalists in the jazz and new music scene. Alex studied vocal performance in the jazz program at the University of Toronto and at the Banff Center’s Creative Music Program. Alex also spent time working in New York City with contemporary arts icon Meredith Monk and her vocal ensemble. Alex is the founder and artistic director of his own 8 voice group GREX which performs new and experimental vocal works and which was featured in the Music Gallery’s Emergents series for up and coming artists. This past year he was part of the Young Centre’s Emerging Artist Program under the mentorship of Greg Oh. Alex will be teaching voice at the University of Toronto Jazz Program this year.
Doug Tielli is a musician and singer living in and working in Toronto. A multi-instrumentalist (guitar, banjo, trombone, keyboards…) he finds himself on the edges of many musical practices (song-writing, pop, jazz, country, free-improvisation, composition and sound-art). He has performed with such reknowned musicians as: Marshall Allen, Baby Dee, Eugene Chadbourne, Amy Millan, John Oswald, Evan Parker, Dan Whiteley, and he has had chamber music pieces performed by Arraymusic, Contact, and Neither/Nor. As a singer-songwriter, and with co-lead bands Drumheller, The silt and The Reveries, he has toured Canada, U.S.A., Italy, Germany, U.K., Ireland, Austria, Denmark, Belgium, Holland, Finland and Estonia.
Brodie West. Alto saxophonist, composer and bandleader Brodie West is well known for his activities on Toronto’s experimental jazz scene. He leads his own bands Eucalyptus and Legends of Jazz Piano and is also a member of Drumheller and The Lina Allemano 4. He collaborates off and on with a number of Toronto improvising musicians, including Eric Chenaux, Ryan Driver, Nicole Rampersaud, Rob Clutton and Anthony Michelli and performs on occasion with experimental pop project Tenderness, Andrew Zukerman AKA Fleshtone Aura and HVYWTR. West has also spent a great deal of time over the past 10 years based in Europe, mostly Amsterdam, where he studied with the celebrated composer Misha Mengelberg and has played often with legendary Dutch drummer Han Bennink. West has toured extensively throughout Europe as well as Ethiopia, The USA and Canada with seminal punk/improvisers The EX in a special project featuring Ethiopian saxophonist Getatchew Mekuria.