Chantal Chagnon is Cree/Métis from Muskeg Lake Cree Nation. She is a Singer, Drummer, Storyteller, Speaker, and Workshop Facilitator. A single mother of two boys, she understands societal struggle first hand. Chantal has been an activist, advocate for her community, professional performer and a staunch crusader for causes close to her heart. She has performed at the Jubilee, Jack Singer, MacEwan Hall, and other high profile venues. She has presented at Conferences, Conventions, Galas, Fundraisers, Community, Social Justice Events and in Classrooms from Preschool through University.
Chantal is active within the Idle No More movement, Social Justice causes, Sisters in Spirit, Murdered and Missing Indigenous Women awareness campaigns, and is regularly organizing events, speaking, presenting, singing and drumming within the community, with a focus on building allies and alliances.
Eileen Kosasih is inspired by aesthetics and people. She has studied music in Calgary, Boston, Indianapolis, Philadelphia, New York City, and L.A. She has a B.A. Music (violin), M.Music (orchestral conducting), and piano diploma. In life and music, Eileen "employ[s] wreckless abandon with uber skill" - Anthony (local composer/pianist). Eileen maintains finesse and a clear, expressive tone while fearlessly exploring new musical and artistic territories. Eileen is Founder and Director of Calgary Arts Orchestra, a new ensemble dedicated to featuring new, local compositions.
The Jazzlib Collective was founded by three fellow creative minds, all holding an unconditional love for Hip-Hop culture and its enlightening potential. Cam The Human, Nameless The Dark Knight, and The Krippled Khemist looked at the way hip hop has matured over the past three decades and devised a 5 year plan to re-surge the long lost ideals that were very alive during Hip-Hop's golden age. These ideals were paramount in spawning that great multitude of creative, original and artistically expressive styles of what was known the world over as, Hip Hop culture. 3love
Keshia Cheesman is in her 4th and final year at the University of Calgary, receiving her BFA in Drama. Her recent acting credits include Oblivion (Third Street Theatre) Daniel MacIvor’s Inside (University of Calgary) Swallow-A-Bicycle’s Site Specific Fission Tour (Sage Theatre’s Ignite! Festival), and The Real Inspector Hound (University of Calgary).
Makambe K Simamba holds a BFA from the University of Lethbridge, where she focused on acting and playwriting. She won the 2012 Alberta Playwright's Network Discovery Prize, the 2014 Ottawa Little Theatre National Playwriting Competition, and was a runner up for the 2013 Uprising National Playwriting Competition for her original play, MUD. Makambe was a member of the 2013-2014 Playwright's Unit at Obsidian Theatre in Toronto. As an actor, select credits include SIA (Pyretic Productions), Medea (Chromatic Theatre), Adventures of a Black Girl in Search of God (Ellipsis Tree Collective), The Lion in Winter, and The Madonna Painter, (University of Lethbridge). Most recently, Makambe wrote, produced and starred in A Chitenge Story, an autobiographical one woman show that created a platform to discuss healing from sexual abuse, as well as the opportunity for audiences to connect with various support networks in Calgary. A Chitenge Story will be workshopped and performed at UnoFest in Victoria in May 2016. Makambe is thrilled to experience and create art all over Canada.
Cheryl Foggo has been published and produced extensively in multiple genres. Her most recent play, John Ware Reimagined, attracted sold out houses in Calgary in 2014 and won the 2015 Writers Guild of Alberta Gwen Pharis Ringwood Award for Drama. She received the Sondra Kelly Screenplay Award from the Writers Guild of Canada and was named Professional of The Year by the Black Gold Awards Society of Alberta in 2013. In 2014 she co-produced Alberta’s first Black Canadian Theatre Series with Ellipsis Tree Collective Theatre Company. A long time student of African-North American history, she has a particular interest in disseminating the stories of Alberta’s Black pioneers.
Sabrina “Naz” Comanescu is a dynamic member of the Calgary Dance Community especially in the urban and Caribbean dance scene through her work as an instructor, performer, and choreographer. Naz has worked with House of Dangerkat, The Bad Girls Club YYC and Decidedly Jazz Danceworks. She has also had the opportunity to train and perform in Trinidad and Tobago, Finland, New York City and Romania. Select credits: Nordic Moves, Hedley, Diplo, Kingdom, Cherie Lily, Umi Marcano and Da’ville. Naz’s choreography has been presented in many festivals and theatre shows. Naz is also the Founder and Artistic Director of Casa De Naz, a collective of artists mixing dance, music, fashion, and film all with a modern Caribbean flare to enlighten art hubs across Canada with the vivacious performing and visual arts of the Caribbean!
Jessica Szabo was raised in Calgary, attended ACAD and graduated from the sculpture department. She then went on to get her teaching degree from U of C and now teaches Junior High Art. She is a co-founder of the amazing not-for-profit Arts Society, Rumble House.
Jessica works in an assortment of materials-depending on her mood and intended message including, oil paint, watercolour, and fibre art, including but not restricted to, contemporary embroideries. Coming from a Hungarian background, both her grandmas taught her the traditional embroidery methods and imagery from various regions of Hungary. She took what she learned from them and integrated her own imagery fueled by contemporary issues and messages that arise in the lives of the team at Rumble House, and her experiences with today’s youth in her teaching career. Jessica is mainly focused on the woman's role and influence on her surroundings, how it's evolved over time and where it is going.
Through her Gallery and Studio space, Jessica Szabo and Rich Theroux are focused on Inclusionism, both as an art movement - they have written a manifesto that outlines their goals and values - as well as a cultural movement.