Michael Park is an accomplished composer and pianist with a keen interest in speech, humour, and collaboration. His music aims to give audiences an experience beyond the realm of traditional concert-going. Heralded for his innovative projects, his Ted Talk, Experiencing Disease Through Musichas been described as moving, haunting, and an amazing translation of the disease. Michael’s compositions have been performed in Vancouver at the Sonic Boom Music Festival and the Songfire Festival of Song, as well as concerts presented by Music on Main, the Erato Ensemble, and pianist, Corey Hamm. His music has been presented in Winnipeg by Flipside Opera and the Contemporary Opera Lab, and in New York by Opera On Tap. An accomplished pianist, Michael’s experiences with improvisation and multi-disciplinary collaboration led him to studies in composition. He regularly performs his own works, as well as those of his colleagues and continues to collaborate with a wide variety of artists, including dancers, poets, visual artists, and musicians. He also sits on the board of directors for Vancouver’s Redshift Music Society.
Alison d’Amato is a dynamic and versatile musician, committed to performing and teaching in the full spectrum of solo and chamber music genres. She is actively involved in creating new approaches to chamber music in colleges and conservatories, and has developed several projects that explore interdisciplnary collaborations among artists. A valued member of several pioneering organizations in addition to Art Song Lab: she is Artistic Co-Director of Florestan Recital Project and co-founder of the Vancouver International Song Institute (VISI). In 2011, she joined the faculty at Eastman School of Music as Assistant Professor of Vocal Coaching. In all these activities, Alison is dedicated to energizing the relationships and communication inherent in music and bringing students’ love of music to the forefront of their projects. As both a pianist and teacher, Alison enjoys a variety of engagements that includes interdisciplinary projects with musicologists, composers, writers, and dancers.
Zoe J. Dagneault currently studies English Literature at Simon Fraser University. She is also enrolled in SFU's The Writer's Studio. Zoe's work explores wordscapes varying from Buddhist robot romances to emo-techno-pastoral portraits. Most recently, her altru-eco-feminist contemplations have refocussed with the birth of her daughter, Violetta. Zoe lives and writes in East Vancouver.
Dubravko Pajalic graduated from the Music Academy, Department of Musicology and Music Journalism, University of Zagreb, Croatia. He also studied Archival Studies and Informatics in Croatia, Austria and in Canada. He music studies include: the flute, guitar, choral conducting (Emil Cossetto, Jon Washburn) and composition (Stanko Horvat). Since arriving to Canada he has been conducting community and church choirs, and regularly attends music workshops. Dubravko’s compositions take on the format of a “bricolage" - works influenced by a diverse range of things and themes available (for example: a current mood or a mind-set ; or, simply a subconscious reflex to melodic material).
Karen Garry is a Visual Artist and Storyteller who moonlights as a poet when no one's paying attention. She began self-publishing at the age of 14 and has since carried many a title from the mundane to the remarkable and has marvelled at the destinations one can arrive should they continue to put one foot in front of the other. She has made 'zines, panned pizzas, illustrated books, drawn comics, sold groceries, taught Art and English, had international art shows, pre-visualized animated scenes in 3D, storyboarded sequences for cartoon movies and is currently in the process of writing her first picture book. She's fluent in three languages, has travelled a fair bit of the world and wants humans to help save the bees and keep the polar bears afloat. When's she not trying to convince people to stay up past their bedtimes, she can usually be found on her bicycle, at the beach or strumming the strings on her classical guitar. She currently resides in Vancouver, BC, and thinks it'd be great if there were never another tanker blocking the view.
Eve is a poet and lapsed software engineer. For Art Song Lab 2015 she co-created the piece "Song for Shed Bird" with Colin McMahon. Her work gravitates toward finding emotional access to sites of inaction or stasis. She is currently at work on a long poem set in the great pacific garbage patch.
Mark Bondyra is a writer and designer who lives in Vancouver. He is a recent graduate of SFU’s The Writer’s Studio and is working on a collection of short stories. In his free time he climbs mountains.
Leigh (L) Matthews is a bisexual, queer, vegan, feminist, immigrant writer living in Vancouver, BC. Her first novel, The Old Arbutus Tree, was published in 2013, followed by the first two novels in the All Out Vancouver series: Don't Bang the Barista! (2014) and Go Deep (2016).
The All Out Vancouver series is a contemporary take on the genre of lesbian pulp fiction. Set in East Vancouver, the series follows the lives of a medley of queer characters and offers all the fun, frolics and drama of classic pulp fiction, but none of the death, denial or heteronormativity.
L took part in Art Song Lab 2015, and her work featured at Queerotica as part of the 2015 Queer Arts Festival. Her poetry and journalism has appeared in Hobart Pulp, Driftwood, Aesthetica, PUSH, and elsewhere.
When she's not at the beach with her pup, L works as a medical copywriter focusing on nutrition and public health communication. She is a qualified nutritionist with an interest in food security, nutriepigenetics, and intersectional vegan feminism, and published her first non-fiction title (Eat to Beat Acne) in 2015.
L is fond of real ale, border collies, tea, and crumpets.
Jordan Key is currently pursuing his PhD in composition at the University of Florida under Professor Paul Richards. Previously, he studied and taught at The University of Arizona, where he earned his Master of Music degree in Composition under Professor Daniel Asia. Jordan earned his Bachelor's degrees at the College of Wooster in Ohio under composer Jack Gallagher. Jordan has had a number of works performed. Significant are recent performances by internationally renowned organist Pamela Decker of his "Chorale Suite for the Crucifixion of Christ," the Vancouver Art Song Lab of his "Dream Season's Done," the Charlotte New Music Festival of "The Vision of Cataclysm" for flute quartet and percussion, and his work with the Florida Players at the University of Florida on theatrical music for Melancholy Play by Sarah Ruhl. Jordan's interests in early music, bagpipe music, and modern organ repertoire give his music a distinct contrapuntal and harmonic flare that is both rhythmically diverse and melodically compelling.
Vancouver writer and editor Judith Penner has co-authored several books, been a journalist in the UK and Canada, and written for film and radio. She continues to work as an editor and to write poetry and short fiction. Her work has appeared in The Capilano Review online, Geist magazine and other periodicals, and at Song Room, writer/composer collaborations curated by David Pay and the late Tom Cone. Why is the World as Crunchy as a Diamond?, a book of prose/poems, will be ready this year.
Katherine is an earnest interlocutor and a fierce thinker who is endlessly interested in the conversation of art and impact, topics surrounding gender and sexuality.
Her writing focuses on poetry, prose, and art reviews. Having lived abroad in Berlin for the last two years pursuing a master’s degree in English Literature, she is currently researching for her thesis project specializing in temporality and queer studies. Connected to the independent art scene in Vancouver, she is the Gallery Associate at Untitled Art Space located in the DTES, where she assists in curation, public relations, and install processes for art shows. She is also a regular contributing writer at Sad Mag, a print and online publication on Vancouver’s independent arts and culture.
A fan of collaboration and meaningmaking, she is constantly in the pursuit of meaningful work with artists, creatives, to generate impact.
Nebal Maysaud was born in 1995 in Alexandria, Virginia. Born son of two Lebanese bakers, he did not grow up in a musical family but has found music on his own. His music is a convergence of Lebanese tradition, faith, queer liberation, and contemplation of our current society. He is not afraid to portray the suffering of those who are often silenced and firmly believes in the power of music to express the voices and needs of the oppressed, particularly among those with diverse gender identities and sexual orientations. His music is influenced by many different artists of various traditions, including Vaughan Williams, Khalil Gibran, Arvo Part, Walt Whitman, Mahmoud Darwish, Guillaume de Machaut and J.S. Bach.
Nebal also has a huge interest in Religious Studies and is usually not afraid to integrate that into his music. Finding multiple ways to speak the mysticism of the universe to his audience. He emphasizes openness in his religious works, asserting that everyone, regardless of sexual or gender identity, class standing, or religious belief or lack thereof (including those outside the Abrahamic tradition), are open to the grace and mercy of the divine.
Nebal Maysaud has composed for a number of ensembles and won numerous awards, including the Alexandria Choral Society Carol Competition, where the Alexandria Choral Society performed his A Capella work, Winter Dusk in concert. Nebal was also a recipient of the first Kluge Young Composer’s Competition, in which his work, O Great Mystery, was performed in concert by the Alexandria Symphony. Nebal has was taught under famed Wind Band composer Mark Camphouse during high school before entering the studios of Joanne Metcalf and Asha Srinivasan. He is currently a composition student in the studio of Prof. Andrew Cole at the Lawrence Conservatory of Music in Appleton, WI.
Graham A. Smith recently completed his PhD in composition at York University in Toronto. He was awarded a SSHRC Joseph-Armand Bombardier Canada Graduate Scholarship for his dissertation research which focuses on the requiem mass. His dissertation was supervised by Michael Coghlan and includes an original requiem mass composition for large orchestra and chorus that has a duration of sixty minutes. Graham also holds an MA in composition from York and a BMus from Queen’s University in Kingston. While at Queen’s, Graham had the privilege of studying composition with John Burge and Marjan Mozetich.
As a musician, Graham is active as a versatile freelance double bassist and electric bassist with more than a decade of professional performance experience in settings that include orchestral, jazz, chamber, singer-songwriter, musical theatre, folk, rock, and world. Graham also maintains a private teaching studio in Toronto’s Christie Pits neighbourhood where he lives with his wife, professional cellist Erika Nielsen.
Jennifer Kwon Dobbs is the author of Paper Pavilion, recipient of the White Pine Press Poetry Prize and the New England Poetry Club’s Sheila Motton Book Award; Notes from a Missing Person (Essay Press 2015); and Song of a Mirror, finalist for the Tupelo Snowbound Chapbook Award. Her work has appeared recently in Blackbird, Columbia: A Journal of Art and Literature, Crazyhorse, Cimarron Review, Indiana Review, and Poetry International. She has received grants from the Daesan Foundation, Intermedia Arts, and Minnesota State Arts Board. Currently, Jennifer is associate professor of English and program director of Race and Ethnic Studies at St. Olaf College where she teaches creative writing and Asian American literature. She lives in Saint Paul, Minnesota.
Sandro Manzon (born April 2, 1991) is a Canadian musician/composer. His music spans a variety of realms, focusing on forms of experimental, chamber and psychedelic soft-rock music. His music has been performed in North America, Europe and Asia. Sandro is also the frontman and contributing songwriter for the acclaimed psychedelic soft-rock band, f r o m h e r e.
Sandro studied composition in Canada with notable composers such as Peter Hatch, Allison Cameron, Linda Catlin Smith, and James Harley. Sandro has also attended composition workshops/lectures by renowned international composers such as Krzysztof Penderecki and Pierluigi Billone.
In 2010, Sandro formed the band Edges, which features some of Toronto's renowned improvising and experimental musicians. Sandro has also taught composition and improvisation workshops in Canada, and Vietnam.
Sandro is currently situated in Montreal, Quebec but has spent time living and working as a musician in Spain, Vietnam and Canada.
Jude Neale was shortlisted for the Gregory O’Donoghue International Poetry Prize (Ireland), TheInternational Poetic Republic Poetry Prize (U.K),The Mary Chalmers Smith Poetry Prize(UK), The Wenlock International Poetry Prize (UK), finalist for Pandora's Poetry competition (Canada) and finalist for the Pat Lowther Memorial Award (Canada), and was nominated twice for an Internationally renowned Pushcart award for her third book, A Quiet Coming of Light.
She is an opera singer and poet who enjoys performing with other genres as diverse as dance, tabla or viola. Thomas Beckman and Jude have just released a collaborative EP (Places Beyond) a blend of viola and the spoken word.
She recently contributed to the League of Canadian Poets, Women's Caucus, a chapter on collaboration for their upcoming anthology of essays on this subject. She was one of the jurors of this year’s Pat Lowther Memorial Award.
When she is not writing, she is singing in underground parking lots.
Emily Joy Sullivan is a composer, choir director, and educator from Buffalo, NY. She holds a B.A. in Music, Magna Cum Laude, from Amherst College and an M.S. in Early Childhood and Childhood General Education from the Bank Street College of Education. Ms. Sullivan is currently working towards a Master's Degree in Music Composition at SUNY Fredonia, where she studies with Paul Coleman; she has also studied with Eric Sawyer, Peter Klatzow, and Robert Deemer. Ms. Sullivan’s music is characterized by lyricism and lush expressivity, and is deeply influenced by folk, pop, and world music. Ms. Sullivan loves writing musical theater, and is especially interested in writing for the female voice. She strives to incorporate her feminist principles into her compositions, writing songs that give characters agency and expressivity.
Ms. Sullivan continues to teach, and has been active in directing and/or founding singing groups for the last ten years. She received a 2012 Davis Projects for Peace grant to bring together South African youths of different backgrounds through community choral singing. She also fundraised for and founded a youth choir in Queens, NY. Her community choir in New York touched the lives of adults from dozens of countries, and continues to perform six years on. She is currently “spreading seeds” through her role designing and teaching Chorus and Music Theory curricula at the Buffalo Center for Arts and Technology.
Glenn Sutherland, composer of vocal, choral, and instrumental works, has studied composition with Michael Trew, Lane Price, and Jocelyn Morlock. His vocal, chamber and orchestral works have been performed by soloists and ensembles in Canada and in Europe. Performers include Melanie Adams (soprano), Heidi Krutzen (harp), the Grand River Chorus, Erato Ensemble, the McGregor-Nesselroad-Barnes Trio, the Vancouver Brass Project, the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra (Jean Coulthard Readings), and recently by the Winnipeg Symphony Orchestra as part of their 25th anniversary New Music Festival concert series. Winnipeg’s award-winning Esprit de Choeur featured their commission of three pieces in their June 2016 concert, as well as during the 2015 Tapestry International Festival for Women’s Voices. He has been published by Mayfair Music and Avondale Press. He is the 2016 winner of the Canadian Music Centre (Prairie Region) Emerging Composer competition.
When not composing, he is a conservation biologist, primarily focussed on issues involving endangered species.
Sammy Shatner moved to Canada in 2011 from North Africa to pursue a post-secondary education in music. Having had no prior formal musical training, he completed the one-year Basic Musicianship Program at Douglas College and subsequently the two-year University Transfer Program. At Douglas College he studied classical guitar with renown performer and professor Michael Strutt, and composition with renown Vancouver-based composer and music professor Doug Smith. In 2015 he transfered to the University of British Columbia to continue his undergraduate degree in composition, studying with Stephen Chatman and Dorothy Chang. He has composed for various solo instrumentalists and chamber ensembles and has had works performed at Douglas College, the Vancouver Academy of Music, and the School of Music at UBC. He has also worked with UBC singers and poets from the Vancouver Thursdays Writing Collective to create new art songs under collaborative pianist and professor Rena Sharon, founder of the Vancouver International Song Institute.
Sammy is currently completing the last year of his Bachelor of Music at UBC.
Sajia Sultana Kabir is a dancing songwriter, theatrical bellydancer, and singing actress based in Vancouver BC. She is passionate about classical and folk art forms, science fiction and fantasy, avant-garde and DIY performance, and social justice. She wishes to share her sometimes disturbing, always compassionate visions of the world with a wide audience.