Music and Culture Speaker Series 2022-2023

The Music & Culture Performance Speaker series at University of Toronto Scarborough showcases the breadth and depth of a variety of professional relationships to music.  Invited speakers are asked to both speak to and perform their relationship to music-making, composition, and/or performance. The Fall 2022 speaker series has been curated by Dr. Pablo D. Herrera Veitia, Post-Doctoral Fellow at the Afrosonic Innovation Lab. For this series we focus on Afro-Cuban & Afro-Diasporic rhythms, their social meaning and constructions of identity, nationhood, and futurity.

Join us by registering on CLNx.

Steps to sign up: Log in to > Events and Workshops > UTSC Scarborough > Arts, Culture and Media > Event on calendar


Winter 2023 Program:

marcela rada

Marcela Rada | March 8th, 2-4pm

Marcela Rada is a talented and accomplished audio engineer that has experience both in the studio and in the classroom teaching university level students the skills of becoming professional audio engineers and music producers. She has worked across music genres recording, editing, mixing, and mastering audio for independent artists. But unlike most engineers out in the world, Marcela also has experience in and passion for creating immersive audio environments using software and speaker configurations that can be utilized both in live rooms and on recordings.

Marcela has taught music production and audio engineering at Algonquin College, Interlochen Centre for the Arts, Berklee College of Music, and Soundfly. Marcela is passionate about using the latest audio and video technology for the creation of innovative and immersive projects and is constantly expanding her knowledge through academic research. She currently teaches full-time in the Digital Audio Arts program at the University of Lethbridge.

Joy Lapps | February 15th, 2-4pm

Award-winning instrumentalist of Antiguan and Barbudan descent, Joy Lapps treats the steelpan as a tool for community engagement. Her work aims to amplify women’s contributions, particularly in the steelband movement. The Toronto native has collaborated with Stewart Goodyear, Roberto Occhipinti, Larnell Lewis, Gramps Morgan — whose 2022 release Positive Vibration received a GRAMMY nod — Elmer Ferrer, Jeremy Ledbetter, Johnny Reid and mentor Andy Narell. As a leader, Joy has appeared at Lula Lounge, Toronto Jazz Festival, The Rex, The Jazz Room, Mutahdi’s International Drumming Festival, Island Soul Festival, AfroFest, The Women in Jazz Performance Series, McMaster University Concert Series and Autumn Leaves on Steel; as part of steelbands, she’s performed at the Queen’s Park Savannah for Panorama Semi-Finals with Birdsong Steel Orchestra, Lamport Stadium for Pan Alive with Pan Masters and Pan Fantasy, Le Petit Journal Jazz Lounge with Calypsociation and at the Brooklyn Museum with Pan Fantasy. Joy has issued five independent albums: How Great Thou Art (2004), Make a Joyful Noise (2006), It’s Christmas Time (2007), Morning Sunrise (2014) and Girl In The Yard (2022). Her repertoire teems with Afro-Caribbean- and Afro-Brazilian-inspired rhythmic and harmonic patterns, and plenty of space for improvisation; a fondness for funk and pop song forms emerges frequently in her compositions. She received her MA from York University, and has earned the 2014 Dr. Alice E. Wilson Award; the 2015 Caribbean Music and Entertainment Award; and the 2016 HUTTers Phenomenal Woman Award for Leadership in Community Arts. 

Aline Morales | January 18th, 2-4pm

A leading force in Canada's Brazilian music scene, Juno-nominated percussionist, composer and vocalist Aline Morales delivers a personal and intimate perspective on contemporary Brazilian pop -- incorporating global folkloric and jazz elements with vintage Tropicalia and MPB. Morales' strikingly clear and confident vocals shine alongside her evocative compositions and the lush arrangements contributed by longtime collaborator, producer and guitarist David Arcus. Also a highly-regarded percussionist, Morales has changed the face of Brazilian music in Canada through a wide range of projects, showcasing her strength and versatility as bandleader and instrumentalist.



Fall 2022 Program:

Yosvany Terry | September 29, 12-2pm

Born into a musical family in Camaguey, Cuba. Yosvany went on to classical music training in Havana at the prestigious National School of Arts (ENA) and Amadeo Roldan Conservatory. After graduating, Yosvany worked with major figures in every realm of Cuban music including pianists Chucho Valdes, and Frank Emilio and the celebrated nueva trova singer/guitarist Silvio Rodriguez. From his earliest days in New York, Yosvany has been welcomed by a broad range of artists in the jazz and contemporary music community; playing with, Steve Coleman, Rufus Reid, Gonzalo Rubalcaba, Roy Hargrove, Vijay Iyer, Jeff “Tain” Watts, Avishai Cohen, Baptiste Trotignon, Eddie Palmieri, and Gerald Clayton. Yosvany has continued his music education in New York, he studied composition, orchestration and counterpoint with Leo Edward, Rudolph Palmer. Yosvany has received a number of commissions as well as grants to support both his performance and composition work. He is a recipient of the prestigious Doris Duke Artist Award of the class 2015. His ‘New Throned King’ album received a Grammy Award Nomination for “Best Latin Jazz Album”. A key aspect of his work is educating the next generation of musicians both here, and in Cuba. He has taught at prestigious institutions across the United States and Canada. He regularly visits his alma maters in Cuba to give workshops and master classes. In 2015, Yosvany joined the full time faculty at Harvard University as Senior Lecture and Director of Jazz Ensembles in the Department of Music.


Magdelys Savigne | October 27, 2-4pm 

Hailing from Santiago de Cuba, Savigne graduated with honours in orchestral percussion from Havana’s University of the Arts. She received a Grammy nomination for her contributions to Jane Bunnett and Maqueque, of which she is a former member. As the other half of the Afro-Cuban women duo Okan, Savigne has recently worked with Bomba Estereo, Lido Pimienta and Bianca Gismonti. For Okan’s 2019 debut album Sombras, she received a Juno nomination and an Independent Music Award, along with Elizabeth Rodriguez, Okan’s other half. In 2021, Okan’s sophomore effort Espiral won a JUNO Award for Best World Music Album of the Year.



Welmo Romero-Joseph | November 25, 2-4pm

Welmo Romero-Joseph is an Afro-Puerto Rican poet, rap artist, and beat-boxer who uses his compositions for anti-racist purposes in the Caribbean Island. His work also intersects academic and community-based projects related to negritude and racialization in Puerto Rico. Further biographical information can be provided on request. Using an Afro-Boricua perspective Romero-Joseph will discuss the culture that gave rise to rap and reggaeton music in Puerto Rico.




Louis Chude-Sokei | December 4, 4pm 

Louis Chude-Sokei is a Professor of English and director of the African American and Black Diaspora Studies Program at Boston University. Scholarly work includes the award-winning The Last Darky: Bert Williams, Black on Black Minstrelsy and the African Diaspora (2005), The Sound of Culture: Diaspora and Black Technopoetics (2015) and the acclaimed memoir, Floating in A Most Peculiar Way (2021). He is Editor in Chief of The Black Scholar, one of the oldest and leading journals of Black Studies and founder of the sonic art and archival project, Echolocution. Other projects include collaborations with German electronic musical icons, Mouse on Mars, and legendary choreographer Bill T. Jones. Chude-Sokei was also a curator of Carnegie Hall’s 2022 Festival of Afrofuturism.