2012 Festival Line-up
Brittney “Twix” Dixon is a 22 year Old Seneca College ECE Graduate specializing in Kindergarten, and has also completed her certification in teaching English as a Second language. “Twix” is Known for her devotion to the Rexdale community, whether it’s working at the local community center or the Albion Boys’ and Girls’ club, she always finds ways to give back to her community by hosting and MC’ing local events such as Stomp Urban Dance competition 2011, The Urban Noise Festival of 2011, North Kipling Multicultural show, Elmbank Fish Fry and many more. Twix has always been a positive influence to everyone around her. Her former high school teacher and mentor always encouraged her to be her best and gave her the motto to “think big, if you don’t do it someone else will!
Gadfly is a Dora Award Winning dance company that began operations in 2008, and is first and foremost an Urban Dance innovative content provider for a broad variety of unique projects. The company has its headquarters in Toronto and extend its talents to 3 spheres of activity: Theatre productions, Artist training, and Street Dance events. While sustaining stringent standards of artistic excellence and freshness, under the artistic direction of Ofilio & Apolonia, Gadfly adds to innovative projects the same energy and spirit that characterize all of its productions.
Dance Battle: The best Hip Hop dancers, Bboys, Poppers, House Dancers and many more from Toronto will come together to compete and share with each other the unique energy that only exists in Street Dance Culture. 8 dancers will compete on music varying from Funk, House music, Classical, Hiphop, and even Top 40.
Sean Mauricette a.k.a. SUBLIMINAL is a jack of all trades. Part beat-boxer, DJ, lyricist and producer, this is the unique combination that makes up Subliminal’s style. He has opened for such recording artists as Mos Def, Eric Roberson, Arrested Development and Jagged Edge and Morris Day and the Time to name a few. Subliminal also has his eyes on acting, working alongside actors such as Kevin Bacon, Howie Mandel, Jill Scott, Ving Rhames and Robert Townsend. Currently the host and key note speaker for the P.U.L.L. Project (Peace, Unity, Leadership, & Learning), Subliminal knows that youth need encouragement to follow the right path. Subliminal has recently launched his self produced album TRAINATHOUGHT. A style of hip hop he calls ‘Soul-Hop’, less concerned with negativity and is more about matters of the soul.
Dwayne Morgan began his career as a spoken word artist in 1993. He is the founder of Up From The Roots entertainment, which promotes the positive artistic contributions of African-Canadian and urban influenced artists. He is the recipient of the African Canadian Achievement Award, the Harry Jerome Award for Excellence in the Arts, and three Canadian Urban Music Awards. Dwayne has shared the stage with top Canadian artists such as Kardinal Offishall, Jully Black, K-OS, Nelly Furtado, Saukrates and Raine Maida, and has opened for international artists Alicia Keys and Mutabaruka. Dwayne has published three books, most recently, The Making of a Man, which followed The Man Behind The Mic, and Long Overdue. He is an active and highly recognized artist in Toronto’s urban music community, as well as the North American and global spoken word scenes.
Zero Gravity Circus
Zero Gravity Circus is a full service creative circus production house and agency, and provides indoor & outdoor quality entertainment around the world for all seasons – roaming interactive characters, solo or group performances and/or full scale productions – we offer shows of all shapes and sizes. Our artists are top professional entertainers from across Canada and around the world. We have something for everyone: acrobats and aerialists of all descriptions, aerial rigs for outdoor aerial performances, fire artists, giant stilt characters, theatrical clowns (tailored to kids, mixed crowds or strictly adults), rope-walkers, wire-walkers, fantastical creature characters, stunt unicyclists, hula hoop acts, interactive characters, all kind of jugglers, plate spinners, escape artists, contortionists, variety artists, Central Asian acrobats, award winning contemporary balloon sculptors (individual sculptures, shows, decor & more), sword swallowers, ’extreme’ martial arts performance, paranormalists, motocross champions, puppeteers, sideshow acts, free runners, trampoline acts, all kinds of dancers, buskers, face painters, repelling acrobats, circus-style daredevils, high diving acts and much more.
The highly driven and talented singer/songwriter Aria Zenua (more commonly known Aria), exudes her fearless nature on stage sharing sounds of Ska, Reggae, Soul and Acoustic tones. Born and
raised in Toronto, Aria’s fused genre-less sound came from her family life, with a Jamaican mother who loved Country music and a Scottish father who listened to everything from Mento to Blues and Rock to Brit pop. Living in a day and age where music is computerized, tweaked and perfected, Aria’s rawness sets her apart and it is what landed her the opportunity to sing overseas in Hong Kong in 208, for nearly a year with a 6 piece band! After returning to her home city, she took over the local Toronto scene getting involved in as many festivals as possible, and continued to travel. Festivals she’s been involved with include: Manifesto, Irie, the 2010 NXNE and the all female showcase Honey Jam. Outside of her own original songs she also plays the role of Diana Ross in a Supremes Tribute band, does back up vocals in a Michael Jackson band and does both lead and back ups in a Motown band called the Big Sound. Aria is currently working on her first album.
Barry Hibbert is a Toronto-based drummer, instructor and facilitator specializing in traditional West African rhythms. He is founder of Toronto’s “Baro Dununba”, and has traveled to Guinea and Mali, West Africa, to continue his research and development. He has performed all over the city and conducted youth workshops for various organizations such as Youth Without Shelter, Arts Etobicoke and Arts for Children and Youth. With years of experience working in underserved communities such as Parkdale, Regent Park and Jane and Finch, he has created a program called “VOICES,” which helps youth express themselves in non-agreesive and non-violence ways through the practice of drumming. Barry has served as president of the Muhtadi International Drumming Festival and was the first person the bring drumming programs through the City of Toronto, Park and Recreation. He has also been on the selection committee of the Harry Jerome Awards and was board member of the Harriet Tubman Awards.
Along with a dynamic ensemble of musicians, he’ll present an energetic programme called “Anke djé, Anke bé” infusing traditional drumming and dance from Guinea. According to the Bamana people in Mali, the name and purpose of the djembe comes from the saying “Anke djé, anke bé” which means “everyone gather together in peace.”
George Brown Dance
George Brown Dance’s Commercial Dance Studies certificate program provides students with the training necessary to gain work in the commercial dance field. The program is designed for students with training in modern dance forms, specifically jazz, hip hop and musical theatre.
The program prepares students for a dance career in the commercial industry – music videos, touring with recording artists, musical theatre, cruise ship and resort entertainment and industrial productions. Its intensive three-semester structure allows for a high level of specialized jazz dance training alongside a diversity of hip hop styles and complementary dance techniques. Taught by a core faculty comprised of working dance professionals, students are exposed to current practices and expectations within an evolving industry.
Iehienka Ramsay a.k.a Supreme Swiss is a talented rapper from Rexdale. He got his name when a friend told him his rhymes has a “Supreme Flow” and from his amazing shooting skills on the court, “Swish.” At the age of 17 Supreme Swiss was introduced to his first studio at Jane and Eddystone. While recording there, he met many inspiring producers and artists who motivated him to work even harder on his music career. Supreme Swiss has been recording ever since. In the summer of 2011 he released his first tape “welcome to my world” on hotnewhiphop.com and is currently working on his upcoming tape “The Supremecy”. Supreme says “No hard work goes unnoticed, and that’s what keeps me going”.
Denise Thomas a.k.a Nyce Touch was born and raised in Toronto. At a young age, she taught herself how to sing by watching and mimicking what she saw and heard. Her love for hip hop and the art of emceeing developed while attending York University, where she honed her skills in ciphers on campus. After leaving York University, her passion for music led her to attend The International Academy of Design. She enrolled in the Recording Arts Technology program in 2007 and focussed on music theory, production, and audio engineering. After graduating, she began working with local artists and producers such as Natty of Natty’s Beats Production, and working in local community studios as an engineer. One of those studios is a free drop in space program called, P.E.A.C.H (Promoting Education and Community Health). “Working as the engineer has really let me see what Toronto has to offer. There are so many talented youth that come in and out of this studio.” Over the past few years she has shared the stage with Joell Ortiz on a 5 city Ontario Tour, EPMD, Redman, Eternia, Das Efx, Peter Jackson as well as hip hop artist Alex Dimez and made two appearances on Muchmusic (One as the only female mc on the freestyle competition). She continues to perform throughout Toronto and other cities. Her Ep The Split Personality was released this past May and is now available on iTunes and she is currently working on her follow up project still untitled.
Shotty Randolph is a rapper from the Rexdale area. Shotty writes music that stems from the experiences of growing up as a minority in a society that systematically oppresses him and his peers. He has performed at the urbanNOISE Festival in the past and is a promising and inspiring new artist.
DJ Fase was pleasantly surprised when awarded the distinction of being t dot’s best DJ by Now Magazine in 2004. He has opened for the likes of K-os, The Roots, Afrikaa Bambaataa, John Legend and Blackalicious to name a few. Fase is the man behind Footwork Tuesdays, Toronto’s longest running Hip-Hop, Funk, Soul night which he started in 2000. Along with two other weekly club residencies, Fase imparts his musical bravado on Stylistic Endeavors, a weekly Friday radio show on CIUT 89.5FM. As producer of the hip-hop duo Abs & Fase he has toured across Canada and Europe promoting their album Flowtation Device (2001). He is currently working on a solo album, which will feature a wide range of Canadian and American artists.
Toronto Bhangra All Stars (TBA) is an independent Bhangra company founded in 2009. They are a group of experienced and professional dancers who are committed to presenting high quality Bhangra performances. The dancers, armed with all kinds of traditional props, dressed in colourful varthiyan (costumes) charm the audiences with the lilting tunes of old and new songs. The ambiance they create is simply enthralling and supernatural!
Pop and Acoustic music is what you’ll think of when you first hear this fun spirited bright artist, Rebecca Nazz. Growing up in South India, Canada and Kuwait, this Indo Canadian multi-talented singer/songwriter entertains with an intimate acoustic performance on guitar and an energized pop performance. Coming up from the underground she writes her own material, offering a poignant blend of lyrics and thoughtful melodies. Her single “Indian Boy” garnered the attention of world-renowned reggae artist Apache Indian, known for his hits “Boom Shack-A-Lak” and “Chok There” who she featured on the track on her EP “Intimate”. Her pop EP “Intimate” released in Canada Sept 2011 and is being released in the UK and India in 2012. Electrifying from start to finish, her material can be defined as upbeat pop songs with Western/East Indian influences and a lyrical message for everyone. The much anticipated video for Indian Boy releases Nov, 2012. In light of her new acoustic project “Soldier”, planned for release early 2013, she launched the single “Canada EH” in the summer of 2012 and was invited to perform the song at Ribfest, Etobicoke for Canada Day. In collaboration with several community partners the song and video were a success making her the first female indie artist to provide a national song for Canada celebrating multiculturalism. In addition to her music, she serves as the ambassador for Ethan Felix Foundation, a charity that works to enable underprivileged youth in India to have an education. A musician at large and humanitarian at heart, look out for this talented and opinionated artist! In her own words, “Music is art that can create a movement.”
Jaek DeLarge was born on June 24th, 1991 in Toronto, Canada. His musical journey began with artists that have influenced him over the last eighteen years. As a child, he was exposed to the many styles of music from each coast, helping to lay the groundwork for his versatility as an artist. As a result, DeLarge found himself studying the art of rap, rather than simply having the ability to rhyme. As he got older, his taste in music changed and grew with him. He aspires to continue writing and recording his music, constantly improving and evolving. Jaek has been crowned the “Rap City” #Hashtag Freestyle Champion, been featured multiple times as part of Tika Simone’s “Known Unknown” series, appeared on Much Music’s “New.Music.Live” and is currently preparing the follow up to his “One Night Stand” mixtape.
José-Gabriel presents Studio32.ca, an all encompassing creative experimental endeavor brought to you by the founder, curator and creator of Funktion Gallery, Bloor-By-The-Park’s ComeUnity Festival and The GS Party series. In January of 2009, José-Gabriel, along with Members of The Faceless Few Collective opened up Funktion Gallery. For more than a year, Funktion hosted numerous art exhibitions, giving several local artists the opportunity to showcase their work to a new demographic. The Gallery crew provided musical and visual entertainment at countless public and private events throughout Ontario in the form of live painting, disc jockeying and visual design. Through Funktion Gallery, José-Gabriel curated many commissioned murals for businesses, schools and local community associations, as well as taught mural classes, hosted workshops and delivered seminars on youth arts and culture. In providing these services and holding these events, Funktion Gallery has had a positive impact in a community building capacity in Toronto and beyond. Since the closing of Funktion’s storefront location in March of 2010, José-Gabriel decided to continue the pursuit of creative opportunity, expansion and experience in the spirit of Funktion Gallery.
Broken Silence is the Albion Boys’ and Girls’ Club’s children dance group, consisting of both boys and girls between the ages of 7- 14. Choreographers Shanelle Watson and Brittney Dixon provide the children with space, music and inspiration, to explore the world of dancing. Broken Silence began in September 2009 and has since been inspiring children from the community to have a positive attitude and fulfill their dreams. The group has performed in various events from local school talent shows to major competitions. In May 2010, they competed in the STOMP Urban Dance Competition and placed in 2nd place. Broken Silence encourages children to express themselves through their movements and leave a positive impact. They aspire to show others how freely break the silence through movement and express themselves in non-verbal ways.
Nathaniel Reynard Brown a.k.a Martian, is a 16 years old up and coming rap artist from Rexdale. This conscious rapper comes from a musical family and was first inspired by his favourite rapper Hopsin. His father, who’s also a DJ, has been a major influence in his life. Nathaniel is continue to develop his skills through the Young Artist Program at the Urban Arts Center in Weston Road. ”I don’t think life feels good without love…simple as that.” – Hopsin
Avery a.k.a Nineleaf, is a 16 year old rapper from Toronto with a passion for music. He’s loved music from a young age, and always excelled at writing poetry and short stories, as a vehicle to express himself with no boundaries or restrictions. He writes and records his own lyrics and recently completed his first mix tape. “Let the music diffuse all the tension” –Nas.
Tiyana Scott has been singing since she was 8 years old. She’s also an accomplished dancer and track and field athlete. She draws inspiration from her favourite artists Beyonce, Lauren Hill and Shi Wisdom. Her dream is to become a professional singer or lawyer.
Buttercup entertainment provides beautiful face painting creations for children of all ages! The company specializes in all types of children’s entertainment and is sure to be a hit with your little ones.
2011 Festival Line-up
Born June 26, 1995, Reema Major is living out her dream as a multi-talented artist and the self proclaimed “Illest Kid” and “Mother to the New School Era.” Reema is definitely a force to be reckoned with in hip hop today. Reema speaks Arabic, Sudanese Tribal Tongue, as well as English and these colorful languages and cultures inspire her music, fashion and love of life. Reema’s music is a reflection of her personal experiences and not of others around her. Since being discovered on Myspace by Stephen Hill, BET’s President of Programming, Talent and Specials, and being invited to participate in the 2010 BET Hip Hop Awards cypher, Reema continues to prove how talented she is amongst hip hop veterans, globally, despite her age.
Her style, lyrical content and focus stems from her upbringing in an Arabic household and exposure to situations that most people her age never endure. Born in Khartoum, Sudan as the youngest of seven, Reema’s family fled Sudan to escape the coup taking refuge in Kenya and Uganda, before making Canada home in 1998. In Canada, Reema was first introduced to music and hip hop at the early age of 5 by her cousin, who she witnessed engage in cyphers on the steps of their apartment building. At the time, Reema wasn’t aware that she was witnessing her destiny and that her love for writing would eventually be the catalyst to her becoming a rapper.
After leaving Canada for Kansas City, Reema made her way back in 2009 to visit her mother for the Christmas holiday. This unique visit led to her chance meeting with Kwajo Cinqo, member of Canada’s legendary hip-hop group Ghetto Concept and President of G7 Records. “From the moment I met her I knew that she was destined to be a superstar,” Kwajo says. “I feel she is the hottest female in the game and she is young in age, but has a wise soul!” This destined-to-be meeting led to her signing with G7 Records, with the promise that within a year she would be promoted, marketed and signed to a major record label. Kwajo made true to his promise with Reema and after a bidding war with other labels, including Gene Simmons’ label, Reema signed to a joint venture with Universal Music Canada and Interscope Records (USA) in 2010. Joint record label ventures are rare, but it was made possible because of the support from Randy Lennox at Universal Music Canada and Martin Kierszenbaum and Andrea Ruffalo from Cherrytree Records, an imprint of Interscope Records. Kierszenbaum and Ruffalo are the duo responsible for breaking such acts as Lady Gaga, Sting, LMFAO and Far East Movement.
Working with G7 Records/Universal/Interscope as her home label, Reema has had access to some of the best guidance and resources any label could offer. With a powerful team behind her, Reema Major is sure to break boundaries with her music. Her first single “Gucci Bag” was released to an online audience in October 2009 introducing her to the public. Due to the large demand and positive feedback, Reema released her first mixtape “Youngest in Charge” in January 2010 to an online audience as well. Her second street single “Arabic Princess” off her mixtape followed shortly and it has helped Reema break through a young audience. Reema continues to prove that her skills are well beyond her years. Her sound is versatile, and it depicts her worldly outlook on life. Unlike many artists her age, her music is a reflection of her personal experiences and her vast cultural exposure, a quality that contributes to her edgy lyrics and style.
With the release of her hit single “Ghetto Kids” and “Father” on her third mixtape, “I Am Legend” available on May 27th, Reema has no plans of slowing down this year. She has worked with some of today’s top producers including: The Stereotypes, Bangledesh and DJ Toomp. The world is definitely limitless to this soon to be LEGEND, especially with her family and God by her side. Keep God First is Reema’s daily mantra that has been passed down to her by her best friend and number one fan, her mother. When asked about her future, Reema replied, “I want to be remembered as one of the best female rappers ever.”
Scratch, probably best known as a member of Grammy Award-winning band The Roots is an MC and one of the best beat boxers or vocal percussionists in the world. Scratch’s debut album The Embodiment of Instrumentation featured The Roots, E.S.T of Three Times Dope, Bilal, and Jill Scott. He followed that up in 2009 with his critically-acclaimed Loss 4 Wordz CD which features Kanye West, Gorillaz, and Talib Kweli among others.
Former host The Trauma Unit (93.5FM), J Wyze is the quintessential hype man & MC. Once a key member of the Soul Controllers, he has a radio background including stints in community & internet radio. His unrelenting dedication to community has earned him numerous awards ie. “Arts Starts Upcoming Community Artist Award”, “Factor Demo Grant”, “Toronto Arts Council Writers Grant”. Born to a jazz musician father who has toured North America, and Europe, and a mother who sings in an inspirational gospel choir, J Wyze wanted to be an entertainer for as long as he could remember. He began performing at hip hop & spoken word events. He’s a winner of Sears Drama Festival awards/scholarships, the SLAM Poetry competition and is a published writer.
Brittney is a 21 year old Early Childhood Educator and recently received and ESL Position with WE.WILL.NOW Tesol program. This young Seneca College graduate works with youth of all ages and is always giving back to her community by working with different programs. Twix is an after school/summer camp staff with the Albion Boys and Girls Club, and also contributes as a dance Choreographer and special events coordinator. She is also a youth representative with M.T.H.A. In addition, Brittney works with the City of Toronto, Parks, Forestry and Recreation staff at the North Kipling Community Recreation Center. You may have seen Brittney “Twix” Dixon before, she hosted the 2011 STOMP Urban Dance Competition/Showcase this past June at the Sony Center.
Souls of Steel Orchestra is a 20- piece steel pan orchestra, we are comprised of parents, teachers and community members, providing a strong musical foundation in classical harmony and rhythm, a cultural education in the history of the steel pan and the Afro-Caribbean community from which it stems, coupled with the technical requirements and skills to play the instrument. The affectation of the music program grew so rapidly, the Toronto Catholic District School Board ,and the local community that a decision was made to incorporate into a not for profit steel orchestra dedicated to the instruction and performance of the steel pan: Souls of Steel Orchestra – we incorporated as a not for profit with the Province of Ontario on September 4th, 2009. Under the leadership and tutelage of Andre Rouse, our goal was to create a steel orchestra with a large community base that included the school faculty, alumni and the local community. It all began ‘On the Danforth’ a vibrant Toronto community known for it’s numerous restaurants, boutiques and strong Greek heritage. Soul’s of Steel has evolved to be as unique and organic as its musical performances and group of members. Our steel pan performances are fused with traditional instruments such as the trumpet and piano and vocalists to provide true musical experiences and original musicality. Our musical scores are diverse and range from jazz to contemporary to classical and to dance. Souls of Steel Orchestra have provided entertainment support for corporate functions, public relations and promotional events, community groups and musical festivals. Always a crowd pleaser, Souls of Steel Orchestra’s presence in the city continues to draw acclaim, quickly establishing itself as one of the leading steel pan performance groups in Toronto. Souls of Steel Orchestra is a distinctive multicultural organization, diverse in age, socio economic standing, musical knowledge and ethnicity. It is this breadth of diversity that has become the hallmark of our uniqueness. We have become a magnet for youth, we provide mentorship; a place where they are exposed to and develop an array of soft skills such as leadership, character building, teamwork, discipline and confidence qualities as we demonstrate and provide the technical and soft skills required to succeed at performance level.
By fusing culture and building sustainable bridges with the community, we endeavor to further foster the concept and spirit of diversity using this art form as an instrument of cross-cultural communication. We are always open to exploring partnerships with others interested in having a lasting influence on society.
The Freedom Writers movement is a collective of Toronto based artists who have unified their talents and focused towards creating positive, socially, politically and consciously aware music. The movement consists of producer Big Sproxx and emcees Theology 3, Tona, Adam Bomb, Progress, Frankie Payne and Mathematik. Hard hitting production and concise, sharply worded lyrics that cut to the chase are the key elements that define this talented collective. With a long track record of successful releases under their belts each artist brings unique qualities, attributes and viewpoints to the table that collectively form the perfect blend.
L.P Da Original is one of Canada’s rising rap music sensations, known for his hit “48 Hours” with JJ Money. LP is affiliated with the bubbling G7 Records, led by multiple Juno Winning emcee Kwajo from Ghetto Concept.
Telmary Diaz has emerged as a leader and trendsetter on the cutting edge of Cuban hip-hop and urban music. Shaped in part by her study of English, theater, and writing informed her artistry as an up-and-comer in the Havana music scene during the late ’90s. Her first band, Free Hole Negros (a take of frijoles negros, meaning black beans), earned her opportunities to collaborate with Cuban music greats such as Isaac Delgado, Giraldo Piloto, Los Van Van, and Descemer Bueno. Her next group, Interactive Project, initiated in 2002, incorporated elements of jazz, classical music, and traditional Cuban repertoire alongside her preferred hip-hop and funk. Through her many years as a progressive music protagonist in Havana, Telmary earned the clout and support necessary to launch her career as a solo artist with the flagship album A Diario. The record was produced by acclaimed Cuban pianist and Interactive Project veteran Roberto Carcasses. As a rapper, Telmary set out to proclaim a positive, empowering message to contrast the genre’s confrontational, divisive, and commercial norm. Featuring a cast of modern-day Cuban stars like rapper Kumar, producer Athanai, and songwriter William Vivanco, A Diario was quickly heralded as one of the decade’s most thoughtful and creative Cuban hip-hop records. The project was well received by audiences worldwide, appearing on charts throughout Latin America and Europe. Though not well traveled on U.S. soil, Telmary has graced stages all over Europe, South America, and Japan at some of the world’s most renown jazz and popular music festivals.
I have been really interested in making music for about over a two years now. While on house arrest and completing high school I discovered my talent in something I have a passion for. I write my own music everyday based on my emotions, what’s going on around me and my past experiences. I grew up in the Rexdale community in Mount Olive from birth until the age of 11, when my father and uncle were shot and killed at the same time. I entered Breaking The Cycle to change my life and to talk to people about my problems because that was something that was really hard for me. At this point I have changed my life around and I’m doing a lot of positive things and stopping the negative. I want to do it for my father to make him proud that I came out to be the star he saw from day one. Besides music, I want to go back to college and take an engineering or radio broadcasting course. I have a lot of dreams that I’m going to
make sure becomes reality.
Toronto Bhangra All Stars (TBA) is an independent Bhangra team founded in 2009. We are a team of experienced and professional dancers who are committed to offering top of the line, reliable and professional Bhangra services. Our dancers, armed with all kinds of traditional props, dressed in colourful varthiyan (costumes) charm the audiences with the lilting tunes of old and new songs. The ambiance we create is simply enthralling and supernatural.
Chizzy Bashment featuring A.B.S. & Holiday Bros.
A.B.S, known as Another Bad Swagger originated in 2006 at Thistletown collegiate in Rexdale. That’s where these young ladies found their courage to start performing outside of school. A.B.S has been apart of numerous shows and even won awards on their journey. Now the group consist of Moe, Neecie, Pookie, Lenny and Chizzy Bashment who has embrassed her talent as an artist. Along with her close friend Smuggz Holiday who used to dance as well, she has took music serious with a musical group by the name of HolidayBros as she continues to embrass both talents and represents for the females who start small to make it to the top.
J La Soul – bio coming soon
Broken Silence is the Albion Boys and Girls Club’s children dance group. Th group consist of both boys and girls between the ages of 7- 14. Choreographers Shanelle Watson and Brittney Dixon provide the children with space, music and inspiration to explore the world of dancing. Broken Silence began in September 2009 and has since been inspiring children in the from the community to have a positive attitude and fulfill their dreams. The group has performed in various events from local school talent shows to major competitions. In May 2010, they competed in the STOMP Urban Dance Competition and placed in 2nd place. Broken Silence encourages children to express themselves through their movements and leave a positive impact. Broken Silence aspires to show others that other that verbally expressing the emotions, we are able to freely to Break the Silence through our movements.
José-Gabriel presents; Studio32.ca, An all encompassing creative experimental endeavor brought to you by the founder, Curator and Creator of Funktion Gallery, Bloor-By-The-Park’s ComeUnity Festival and The GS Party series.
In January of 2009, José-Gabriel, along with Members of The Faceless Few Collective opened up Funktion Gallery on Bloor Street just east of Lansdowne, in the city’s west end Bloordale neighborhood. For more than a year, Funktion hosted numerous art exhibitions, giving several local artists the opportunity to showcase their work to a new demographic. The Gallery crew provided musical and visual entertainment at countless public and private events throughout Ontario in the form of live painting, disc jockeying and visual design. Through Funktion Gallery, José-Gabriel curated many commissioned murals for businesses, schools and local community associations, as well as taught mural classes, hosted workshops and delivered seminars on youth arts and culture.
In providing these services and holding these events, Funktion Gallery has had a positive impact in a community building capacity in Toronto and beyond. Since the closing of Funktion’s storefront location in March of 2010, José-Gabriel decided to continue in the pursuit of creative opportunity, expansion and experience. To carry on the spirit of Funktion Gallery on a more personal Level.
DJ Loqenz (pronounced Eloquence)
DJ L’Oqenz is a powerful force to be reckoned with. Her passion for music and undeniable skills on the turntables have made her a sought after commodity at home in Toronto and abroad. Born Fayola Leach, it was a love of entertaining family and friends that sent the industrious young woman fervently digging through crates to build up her distinctive repertoire. A true lover of music, she is not confined to one genre. Spinning everything from hip hop to house- L’Oqenz has the ability to fuse them all effortlessly. A true Gemini, she can shift easily from the role of a DJ, to producer, to event manager without blinking an eye or missing a step. She co-hosted “Cypha” one of Canada’s first television programs dedicated to hip hop music. The show acted as a platform for artists like Saukrates, Kardinall Offishal, Common Sense and Gang Starr among others. Spinning at the 2001 Toronto Urban Festival held at the Canadian National Exhibition Band Shell (CNE) gained widespread recognition. The same year, L’Oqenz made the transition from performing live to orchestrating “The Master Plan Show” which aired on college radio (CIUT 89.5 FM) it was on air that she had the opportunity to connect with many incredible artists as well as develop her own personal style. As a DJ, she has had the opportunity to play shows in Ottawa, Montreal, Vancouver, Windsor, Detroit and New York, Los Angeles, Jamaica and the U.K. She has shared the stage with some of the most respected artists in the business including
Zaki Ibrahim, K’Naan, Tanika Charles, Bedouin Soundclash, Saidah Baba Talibah, Motion, ISIS, Masia One, Jean Grae, Apani B Fly, Zion I, M1 of Dead Prez, Bahamadia, Ursula Rucker, Erykah Badu, Hi Tek & Talib Kweli, The Roots and Kool Herc. Committed to bettering her community, L’Oqenz has set aside time to teach and fundraise for youth in Toronto. She teamed up with DJ DTS and Gena Lee to facilitate a DJ class at Ryerson University, and recently participated in a War Child & Doctors Without Borders benefit. As Aritzias resident DJ she produced and arranged the Queen Aritzia compilation in which all proceeds were donated to the YWCA. During her time working with District Six Music, L’Oqenz, Co-Manager and Executive Produced Zaki Ibrahim’s debut EP, Eclectica (Episodes in Purple) she shows no signs of slowing down. In 2011 L’Oqenz keeps life busy and exciting! Currently she manages the career of Tanika Charles. Through mentorship, L’Oqenz stays connected with the youth by facilitating Deejay workshops every week out of St. Albans (Vibrant Voices) & UforChange. She continues to tour, rock parties and stays relevant releasing mixes online. Catch her every month at JANG BANG for HEADSPACE or at Czehoski – Hip Hop Industry Sunday spinning along w/DJ NaNa & Kaewonder. The future is limitless for a master of all trades like L’Oqenz. No matter what she chooses to do next, she is sure to do it powerfully, passionately and eloquently.
Hollywood Jade is one of Toronto’s fastest rising entertainers, showcasing his talents as a dancer, choreographer and innovator in his artform. Hollywod has found creative and dynamic ways to bring his own brand and style of dancing and Choeography to videos, stages and the big screen. Fusing different styles of dance with different gener’s of music is how he has set himself apart from other Choreographer’s in North America.
Hollywood Jade as a contributing member of Artist In Motion ( Much Music Best Dance Crew Winner’s) continues to find new and interesting ways to bring his own flavour and personality to the artform of dance – thereby inspiring others in this field to do the same. He is truly a shining star, one whose power and capability are waiting to be seen. As Hollywood always says “Success lies on the other side of fear”
“R.I.P: Six Degrees of Separation” Graffiti Mural - Created by youth to pay homage to the lives lost to violence and to drive home the message that all Torontonians are affected when a young person is killed. The mural will display the names of Rexdale residents that have died from violence, and community members will be invited to add names to it at the festival.
REXtreme Hair Show; workshops in Graffiti Arts, African Drumming, DJ’ing and Fitness; plus games, contests, prizes, face painting, food and much more.
Somalia & Horn of Africa Famine Relief artistic speak-out and fundraising drive co-produced with the Somali Youth Association of Toronto, as well as handing out of the urbanNOISE Award commemorating the work of an outstanding individual in the community.