INDIGENOUS GROOVES CELEBRATES URBAN INDIGENOUS CREATIVITY
Toronto, ON – Tue, Apr 27, 2023 – The party returns! FabCollab is proud to announce the return of Indigenous Grooves, an electronic dance party, concert, dance performance, and Indigenous marketplace, all rolled into one fabulous evening of festivities. Curated by Indigenous performing artists Tamar Ilana, Cotee Harper and Rosary Spence, the series is the first of its kind on Turtle Island, and features a lineup of all-Indigenous, all-women and non-binary DJs, electronic music artists, traditional singers and dancers, and vendors. The event will be held on Friday May 26th, 2023, doors 7pm, at TD Music Hall, the spectacular club in Massey Hall’s brand new Allied Music Centre.
The series’ all-Indigenous curatorial team has scheduled a thrilling lineup of 13 artists from across the continent, sure to have the crowd dancing and enthralled. Performers include DJ Kookum (of Snotty Nose Rez Kids, Vancouver), 2022 Juno Award-winner Fawn Wood (Alberta, Traditional Indigenous Singer), Tik Tok phenomenon Tia Wood (Los Angeles, Indigenous Contemporary Singer-Songwriter, R&B), Natasha Fisher (Tkaronto, Indigenous Pop Singer-Songwriter), ROSINA (Tkaronto, Electronic Artist), the Juno-nominated Manitou Mkwa Singers (Mississaugas of the Credit First Nation, Traditional Indigenous Singers), DeeJay Jams (Prince Edward County, DJ and Visual Artist), Semiah Smith (Tkaronto, Alternative Electropop Artist), DJ Kimiwan (Tkaronto).
This eclectic mix of electronic and acoustic musical performers will be accompanied on the dance floor by four celebrated Toronto Indigenous dancers: Cotee Harper (Fancy Shawl/Collaborative Dance Artist), Deanne Hupfield (Fancy Shawl), Christine Wajashk-Retoule (Jingle Dress), and Cedar Smoke (Jingle Dress).
Indigenous Grooves is co-curated by Cotee Harper, Rosary Spence and Tamar Ilana and presented by FabCollab. Cotee is an in-demand contemporary and traditional Indigenous dancer and collaborative ballet dancer, and is the daughter of the late elder Vern Harper, a legendary Canadian Indigenous activist. Born in Regent Park, Vern led the Toronto arm of the American Indian Movement in the ‘60s, co-organized the 1974 Native People’s Caravan across Canada, co-founded the First Nations School of Toronto, and was an advocate for urban Indigenous peoples his entire life.
“My father always told me that as an urban Indigenous person, I could do anything I wanted,” says Cotee. “When I wanted to pursue ballet and other members of the community wanted me to focus on traditional dance, my father encouraged me to follow my own path, and that it what I am doing with Indigenous Grooves.”
Tamar Ilana is executive and artistic director of FabCollab and a pillar of Toronto’s global music scene. Her father, Robert Adams was also an influential leader in the Toronto Indigenous community, and in 1997 made an NFB documentary about Vern Harper titled, “Urban Elder.” He will be in attendance.
“We’ve been working towards this celebration, at the beautiful brand new music space, TD Music Hall, for two years,” says Ilana. “We’re so excited to be welcoming all of these powerful artists from across Turtle Island to our home.”
Rosary Spence is a singer, musician, artist, and designer. Her beadwork is featured on popular moccasin brand Manitobah Mukluks, and she has worked closely with legendary Indigenous fashion legend Sage Paul.
“Growing up a Rez kid and a kid in foster care, my grandparents always wanted me to be the best version of myself I could be,” says Spence. “They were always so proud of me and my accomplishments. I sang in choirs and joined all the theatre and music groups. I taught myself how to play instruments and how to sing. There were a few bumps along the road but that is part of the journey. Today, I travel the world with my voice. I am deeply honoured and incredibly proud to be a voice for Indigenous Grooves. “
It’s a party, a show, a market, but above all else, a celebration. Indigenous Grooves celebrates the creativity of Indigenous women and non-binary artists with a night of festivities that pushes the boundaries of tradition and welcomes Indigenous and non-Indigenous alike to celebrate together and dance the night away.
In case audiences are unable to attend in person, the entire evening will also be live-streamed on FabCollab’s website, Fabcollab.ca. This event is made possible thanks to the generous support of the Ontario Arts Council and the Canada Council for the Arts.
For tickets to attend the live show visit: Indigenous Grooves | TD Music Hall (mhrth.com)
Tickets: $22 adv, $27 at the door.
Discounted and complimentary tickets are available for community members facing financial challenges. Please request directly: email@example.com
Live streamed at: Fabcollab.ca