Last year we told you about PIQUE, a project by Imad El-Sheikh, profiling 100 Torontonians. This year we’re excited to know he and his team have put together a second instalment — PIQUE 2.0.
One of the best parts of the project is not only highlighting some of Toronto’s unsung creatives, but also providing exposure and encouragement to these emerging and even established artists in a genuine, yet strategic way. “We consider their artistic merit, age and geographical location (to make sure each area of the city is well-represented) …ultimately it comes down to whether selecting the artist or creative in question will serve our goals” says Imad.
Along with help from popular Toronto photography blog, Streets of Toronto, they’ve also curated a few photographers as part of the newly featured 100 participants. With the focus still exploring the sphere of social media and the context of immediate info, this year’s edition also features interview sessions and a six-part music video. “The new interview series is called GREY NOISE. We selected 10 creatives and asked them a series of questions. The catch was they needed to answer in the form of a teaser…short and sweet and fit within social media time frames.” The music video, features “six talented Toronto dancers of difference disciplines, each with their own teaser…”
The progression of the PIQUE series serves as indisputable proof of the immeasurable amount of untapped creative resources the city holds. Follow @piquetoronto for all the upcoming event details and info and we’ll see you there!
Calling all visual artists, photographers, multi-media, new media, muralists, digital media and graffiti artists! MANIFESTO Festival is now accepting Submissions for the 2015 Festival!
HOW TO SUBMIT
Applications are accepted at mnfsto.com/apply — just go to the webpage, select the discipline you’d like to apply to, and fill in the type form. All applications, with the exception of volunteers, require a $25 fee to cover administrative costs. As well, please include a sample of your work, and a headshot.
Just for applying, you receive FREE entry to the 2015 Art Exhibition that you are applying to, and half-off the Summit. All successful artists will be notified in early July.
The Festival will be running in September 2015, so apply now!
Any inquiries or questions, please email: email@example.com
Originally from the West Coast, the now Toronto-based husband and wife duo – Once A Tree comprised of Jayli Wolf (singer) and Hayden John Wolf (producer & husband) just released their second record entitled “Take Me”, off their forthcoming EP, “Thousand Lives”, due out July 10th. Let us know what you think?
Toronto’s newest creative workspace and members only lounge East Room have partnered with Collectif NUDE to bring you the “NXNE Block Party.”
On Saturday, June 20th, East Room and Collectif NUDE are offering Toronto’s cultured city a new and exciting afternoon filled with music and live art in celebration of NXNE. The event will showcase performances by Toronto-based artists and musicians including: Drew Howard, Birthday Boy, Prince Innocence, Clairmont The Second, Shagabond, and other surprise guest performances. In addition, a live art installation by LovebotTheRobot (Matt Del Degan) will also be in attendance.
The block party will commemorate the second stop in LovebotTheRobot’s “The 2015 Love Invasion” multicity endeavor; the unveiling of a brand new icon; and a live preview of Drew Howard and Birthday Boy’s latest collaboration entitled, “88 Berth”.
We will be on the road TOGETHER at this year’s Toronto Caribbean Carnival as Guinness Extra Stout partners with Team Saldenah & 1LOVETO alongside International Soca Artist Machel Montano, who will be playing in Che Kothari’s “LIKE AH BOSS” section, designed by Project Runway Winner Anya Ayoung-Chee, co-hosted by Toronto native, International Supermodel Winnie Harlow and 1LOVETO ambassador Tyrone “T-rexxx” Edwards in Saldenah Mas-k Club’s presentation of “The Chronicles of Machel Montano” on Lakeshore Blvd, Saturday August 1st, from 8am-6pm.
Be part of this monumental collaboration as we all jump down lakeshore bringing together Soca, Mas & Culture.
REGISTER NOW at the MAS CAMP (2220 Midland Ave #84AP) between 1-10pm daily or visti saldenahcarnival.com
Spots are limited and are selling fast, we urge you not to miss your opportunity to be a part of this iconic experience as our cut-off date will be SUNDAY JULY 5TH!
For more information email: LikeAhBossToronto@gmail.com or call 647-870-4662
In an unprecedented collaboration, three creative giants will unite in Toronto’s annual one-of-a-kind Carnival parade to give the world a remarkable show.
It begins with Louis Saldenah, who is regarded as a formidable pillar of North American Carnival, after being a driving cultural force in Toronto for over 35 years. This 17-time winner of the Band Of The Year title has stunned all with his ingenuous ability to bring Mas to life in the city’s streets.
Also adding her internationally recognized talent this year is trailblazer and entrepreneur Anya Ayoung-Chee. The philanthropist holds the distinct honour of being the 2011 winner of the Lifetime Network’s highly competitive Project Runway, where her unique designs astounded judges and marked her homeland of Trinidad and Tobago as a fashion capital to be closely watched.
Accompanying them in this venture is Machel Montano, whose 33 years in Soca Music serves as the inspiration behind this alliance. His well-earned legendary status as an entertainer, as well as the numerous accolades bestowed upon the Soul Train Music Award winner makes the 17-section Mas presentation based on his music, must see viewing come festival day.
It has been almost 50 years that the city of Toronto has put on this transcending event. An explosion of revelry and arts through which the wondrous beauty of its Caribbean community has been displayed, and which over time has grown to be the largest North American showcase of Caribbean culture.
Louis Saldenah initiated this extraordinary partnership, when he revealed to Machel his desire to pay tribute in Mas to his 33 years of work. Humbled and excited by such a generous gesture, Machel immediately thought to include Anya, to ensure Toronto had a direct infusion of authentic Caribbean culture in this year’s presentation. For many years the city has made Montano a part of its celebration and finally through this group effort, he is able to reciprocate that love in a show of true unity and positive creativity.
The main focus here is to inspire others and to establish a continuous fellowship built upon the strength gained from working together.
Helping to make this happen is Machel’s new manager, Toronto native and well-known cultural ambassador and youth advocate within the city, Che Kothari. He once again takes up the familiar mantle of encouraging artistic development across borders as the section leader for “Like Ah Boss”, which is based on the Road March and Power Soca Monarch winning song. This section will be hosted personally by Montano and has been designed by Anya.
With absolute certainty the time has come for peers around the world to blend together much like the multiracial and multicultural metropolis of Toronto.
Not surprisingly, the Montano brand leads the way as this combination ideally demonstrates the power to be found when everyone forges forward in unity.
Toronto native Adria Kain just released her new album “Island In My Mind”. The album is an incredible collection of songs Adria’s carefully selected as the maturing artist she is. If you remember, we originally blogged about Adria as an emerging artist back in 2012, with her first EP project “Love, Kain”. Since then she’s graduated from The Remix Project, released new records, performed at countless shows, including our Hennessy Artistry event along side the legendary Questlove of The Roots. This album shows the true growth Adria’s gone through not only as an artist, but as a person. Her stories, content, and overall vibe on this album are a natural progression from her earlier music. We encourage you to listen, download, donate and/or share her music with your friends and music lovers alike.
Byron Gray stands on a stage at Pine Point Park on a Saturday afternoon. The sun is shining down. On stage with him are dignitaries including MPP Laura Albanese. There is a crowd in front of him and they’re all cheering.
They’re here to celebrate the fifth anniversary of Freedom Fridayz, a platform Byron started with Kofi Frempong, Felix Cabrera and Andrew Newsome in the Jane and Finch community. We wanted to provide a platform for community members to both showcase and celebrate their skills, talents and knowledge,” explains Kofi. “There wasn’t really an art-based initiative that spoke to artists where they could come together and showcase their art. It was a place you could find established as well as amateur artists so in that sense, Freedom Fridayz filled a void.
The group began holding monthly events at the Black Creek Community Centre where young people could display their art, whether it was visual works, poetry or musical talent. The first event drew a small crowd of 10 people. “I think it was just some random youth that had nothing to do,” laughs Byron. But word quickly spread and every month, the crowd got bigger and the acts got better.
They had to move to The Spot drop-in centre when they outgrew their initial location and now, they once again find themselves nearing capacity. “We’ve had events where we had over 500 people show up,” recalls Byron. “I don’t think we expected to grow so quickly but because of how organic this all came about, the response has been really good,” he adds.
Freedom Fridayz is also gaining momentum outside of Jane and Finch. Their event at Pine Point Park is part of the Pan Am Path Art Relay, a city-wide relay of art installations and events that are happening along the Pan Am Path between May and August. Each week, the festival travels across Toronto to celebrate some of this the city’s greatest assets: nature, arts and active outdoor living. “We saw that they created a welcoming, inclusive, non-judgmental, and safe space where youth could come together, share and celebrate one another and we were impressed,” says Gracia Dyer Jalea, programming manager for the Pan Am Path Art Relay. “It’s effectiveness as a program has spread throughout the City and now youth groups from across Toronto, including communities outside of Jane and Finch, are looking to Freedom Fridayz as a model and often flock to their events each month. “
“We got involved with the Pan Am Path Relay because we believed that it would allow us to do what we do on a bigger scale while fitting into the spirit of the Pan Am Path… Diversity, community, arts, and togetherness,” says Kofi.
As the event draws to a close, the Freedom Fridayz team contemplates what’s next. “We really believe in empowering young people,” explains Byron. “There’s so much talent out there. We’re looking for future leaders to pass the torch to.” “They’re a success story,” adds Gracia. “There’s so much the rest of the city can learn from them.”
The Creator Class caught up with her for their latest episode of ‘ORIGINALS’, where they highlight the lives and ambitions of creative entrepreneurs who are following their passions. Check out the video and get to know a little more about one of the youngest producers in the game!
Around the globe Hennessy Artistry brings together some of the most talented artists on stage for an eclectic mix of music; ranging from hip-hop to pop, rock to electronic music, which we like to call the #ArtofBlending.
We’re excited to announce the latest edition of the Hennessy Artistry Series for 2015, featuring live performances by SOULECTION (Esta, Jay Prince, Lakim, Joe Kay)!! We are also proud to announce additional live performances by Toronto’s own WILDE, music by MyManHenri and hosted by 1 LOVE T.O.’s very own T-RexXx.
Join us on Thursday May 28th at Tattoo – 567 Queen St W Doors @ 10pm.
Please RSVP to firstname.lastname@example.org for you & your guests by 5pm on Tuesday May 26th.
*Must be of legal drinking age to attend.
Miss Melanie Fiona drops a new record entitled “Bite The Bullet”, off her upcoming album “Awake”, due out later this year. We’re happy to hear something new from Mel and we hope you like what you hear as much as we do!
Bravestation just released their new single called “Actors” off their new EP coming out later this summer on Culvert Music. If you’re looking for something to do on May 29th, check out Bravestation live at The Drake Hotel.
Recently I (@brock1loveto) was invited to contribute to Spotify Canada’s “Music For Your World” campaign, featuring a collection of custom, curated playlists representing distinct Canadian neighbourhoods – based on the actual music listened to by people who live there. I chose to contribute to a playlist entitled “Trainspotting” specifically for Dundas Station. The playlist is meant for early mornings and late nights and all the moments in between while you’re waiting for your train.
The first 5 songs of the playlist are my selects:
1. Sohn – The Wheel
2. James Vincent McMorrow – Red Dust
3. How To Dress Well – Ready For The World
4. Sam Smith – Nirvana (Harry Fraud Remix)
5. Chilly Gonzales – White Keys
Early mornings and late nights are an ideal time to just think, reflect, and zone-out, while still being aware of your surroundings. Each one of the songs I’ve selected for the “Trainspotting” playlist has the ability to evoke emotion, bringing you back to a certain point in your life (good or bad) or maybe even fast forward to the unknown. I think it’s important to take a few minutes out of everyday to just appreciate the little things you take for granted. While you wait on the platform for your train, slow things down, pay attention to the details, and let your mind wander. Enjoy!