Almost Live | Celebrating Indigenous Artists

Wednesday May 11, 2022 at 6:30 pm Pacific Time online Zoom

Join us as we welcome back Adler intern, music educator and performer, Deanna Gestrin as our special guest artist for this week’s Almost Live event, hosted by Amy Amantea.

Contemporary Indigenous artists are represented in every modern-day art form. Their work often blends both traditional and contemporary elements in exciting ways. Amy and Deanna will be joined by Indigenous artists Renae Morriseau and Russell Wallace and Indigenous ally Carrie Tennant who will share samples of their work and discuss their unique approaches to dance, storytelling, form theatre, traditional music, composition, and artistic collaboration. This unique showcase models how Indigenous allyship and reconciliation can be mobilized through the sharing and teaching of Indigenous art and culture.

We are thrilled to honour these talented Indigenous artists and allies and to give the VocalEye community front row access to inspiring sounds, insightful conversations, and the cultural beauty rooted in Indigenous music!

The VocalEye virtual lobby opens at 6:30 pm Pacific Time for some socializing and community updates with host Amy Amantea. The pre-show introduction will begin at 6:45 pm with Amy and guests. The featured show begins at 7 pm followed by conversation, Q and A and a prize draw. 

If you’ve never attended a VocalEye Almost Live Zoom event before, you can register for just one event or sign up for the full season. A Zoom link and reminder will be sent to you on the day of the event. Almost Live events are designed for people with sight loss, but everyone is welcome. 

Register here or call 604-364-5949

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Deanna Gestrin

Deanna Gestrin is a performer, vocal coach, composer, conductor, and secondary music educator in Burnaby, British Columbia. As a mixed-heritage member of the St’at’imc First Nation, Deanna strives to build cross-cultural connections through musical performance, education, and her compositions. She holds degrees in jazz performance and secondary music education, and is currently completing a degree in counselling psychology. In addition to school teaching and performing, Deanna conducts a children’s choir at Coastal Sound Music Academy and works as a clinician, vocal coach, and studio singer for various music and tv and film projects.

Renae Morriseau

Renae is a Cree (nehiyaw iskwew ᓀᐦᐃᔭᐤ ᐃᐢᑫᐧᐤ) and Saulteaux woman (nahkawiskwêw ᓇᐦᑲᐃᐧᐢᑫᐧᐤ) from the Treaty 1 Territory on the lands now known as Manitoba. She is honoured to have received cultural teachings within her family through social and ceremonial songs and stories, but also with the Squamish, Musqueam, Tsleil-Waututh, Secwepemc, Okanagan, Nlaka’pamux, Cree and Anishinaabe peoples. She’s been creating artistic works for most of her life and has journeyed across Canada and internationally to share her voice. She is a singer, writer, actress, dramaturg and director in both television and theatre. She continues to use her skills to create stories about the pulse of social change as it relates to her people both on and off reserve for a bright future of hope and love.

Russell Wallace

Russell Wallace is an award-winning composer, producer, and traditional singer from the St’at’imc Nation (Salish) in Canada. His music has been part of a number of film and television soundtracks and theatre/dance productions. Wallace has been part of award-winning recording groups such as Kalan Wi and Spiritual Warriors. In 2019, Wallace was the artist in residence with the TD Vancouver International Jazz Festival. Wallace also has been the artistic director for the Aboriginal Electronic Music Festival, and is currently the director of the Indigenous Vocal Ensemble at Vancouver Community College.

Carrie Tennant

Carrie Tennant is the founder and artistic director of the Vancouver Youth Choir. For the past 15 years she has worked primarily with youth, developing leadership and artistry with young singers. Founded by Carrie in 2013, the Vancouver Youth Choir now serves nearly 300 singers in 7 choirs, including the brand-new VYC Kindred—a free choral program that teaches newcomer and refugee youth about Indigenous music and culture. Over the past 8 years, VYC has emerged as one of the most highly regarded youth choirs in Canada, gaining international attention for their adventurous programming, their commitment to performing and promoting music from underrepresented communities, and their outside-the-box approach to live performance. Most important to VYC members, however, is the community they have created together – one of caring, support, and connection.