AE Festival Presenters

Thursday’s Presenters

Michael Roberson

Michael Roberson is a public health practitioner, activist, and leader within the LGBTQ community who created The Federation of Ballroom Houses, co-created the National Black Gay Men’s Advocacy Group and the HIV prevention intervention “Many Men, Many Voices.” Michael earned Master of Divinity and Master of Sacred Theology degrees from Union Theological Seminary.


Melted-pop duo Phèdre make music for escaping. The visually evocative soundscapes emerging in their songs take form like a great comic; a concise narrative, bright colors, and psychedelic textures. Phèdre‘s music borrows from hip-hop, psych and high-bpm electronica to make music digestible to internet-induced-ADD-types and also those who can sit through a heavily conceptual full-length.

Blue-eyed synth soul with an ’80s bent, The Magic transcend time and place with their music. The duo of Geordie and Evan Gordon with Jessy Bell-Smith, and Tim Clarke create a sparse, haunting sound focused on Geordie’s croon and falsetto, with sonic nods to Sade, Hall & Oates, Haim, and Blood Orange.

Versa is an audio/visual collaboration between process-based artist Monika Hauck and musician Alex Ricci. Expanding on their increasing infatuation with live improvisation and sound-responsive visuals, VERSA produce engrossing video backdrops using hand-crafted props and locally-sourced imagery. VERSA will illuminate the stage for some amazing acts, showering them with layered colour, strobing shapes and hints of a dream you once had.

DJ Junglecat offers you the finest bass heavy sounds of the UK – specializing in bassline house, UK garage, UK funky, grime, dubstep and jungle/drum n’ bass.

Friday’s Presenters

Vanessa de Oliveira Andreotti holds a Canada Research Chair in Race, Inequalities and Global Change at the Department of Educational Studies, University of British Columbia. Her teaching and research focuses on analysis of historical and systemic patterns of reproduction of knowledge and inequalities and how these limit or enable possibilities for collective existence.

Maikoiyo Alley-Barnes

Maikoiyo Alley-Barnes is an artist, filmmaker, writer, and designer who explores the resonance of genetic cultural memory through the mystical and the mundane. Alley-Barnes has exhibited sculpture and films in numerous traditional and new-media-based settings. He has been, and continues to be, instrumental in the creation of seminal cultural spaces in Seattle.

Founder of the renowned Zab Maboungou / Danse Nyata Nyata Company, artist-choreographer and performer, philosophy professor and author, Zab Maboungou has distinguished herself on all fronts of artistic and cultural action. Through her works and involvement in artistic and cultural development, she has managed to translate and implant another presence and another focus for the imagination. The author of several articles on dance and the book “Heya Danse! Historique, poétique et didactique de la danse africaine” (2005), her reputation as a public speaker and “public intellectual” make her very sought-after wherever there is a meeting between “arts, knowledge and people”. Her original technique of movement, called Loketo, is now a model of its kind.

Ashon Crawley

Ashon Crawley is an Assistant Professor of Religious Studies and African American and African Studies at the University of Virginia. His research and teaching experiences are in the areas of Black Studies, Performance Theory and Sound Studies, Philosophy and Theology, Black Feminist, and Queer theories.

Dolleen Tisawii’ashii Manning is an Anishinaabe artist and scholar who works at the intersection of Indigenous philosophy and ways of knowing, contemporary continental philosophy, and art.

Amanda Cachia

Amanda Cachia is an independent curator and Assistant Professor of Art History at Moreno Valley College in the Riverside Community College District in Southern California.

Andrew Hunter is the Art Gallery of Guelph’s Senior Curator and an instructor in OCAD University’s Curatorial and Critical Studies Graduate Programme.

Joseph Heath

Philosopher, cultural analyst, and Professor of Philosophy at the University of Toronto, Joseph Heath presents his lecture, “The Rise of the Counter-Cultural Right.”  Heath will discuss the rise of the alt-right, and the unexpected appropriation by the right of certain radical ideas that originated in the countercultural movements of the 1960s.

Tanya Talaga

Tanya Talaga is a journalist at the Toronto Star, covering everything from general city news to education, national health care, foreign news, and Indigenous affairs. Talaga will be reading from her book, Seven Fallen Feathers: Racism, Death, and Hard Truths in a Northern City, a finalist for the 2017 Hilary Weston Writers’ Trust Prize for Nonfiction.

Okavango African Orchestra

12 instruments, 10 languages, 7 countries…Okavango African Orchestra brings together the traditional music and instruments of several major African cultures that historically have had little or no interaction. Batuki Music Society Artistic Director Nadine McNulty assembled this cast of eight accomplished African-born musicians who now live in Toronto and Montreal.

Saturday’s Presenters

Billy-Ray Belcourt

Billy-Ray Belcourt is from the Driftpile Cree Nation in northwestern Alberta. He is a 2016 Rhodes Scholar and is reading for an M.St. in Women’s Studies at the University of Oxford. He was named by CBC Books as one of six Indigenous writers to watch, and his poetry has been published in Assaracus: A Journal of Gay Poetry, Red Rising Magazine, SAD Mag, mâmawi-âcimowak, The Yellow Medicine Review, PRISM International, and The Malahat Review.

Shelley Niro is a 2017 recipient of the Governor General’s Award in Visual and Media Arts, and the Scotiabank Photography Award.

Nancy Rowe is an educator, consultant and a Traditional Practicioner of Aanishinaabek lifeways, views, and customary practices.

Il-Dong Bae & Dong-Won Kim

Il-Dong Bae is highly regarded as one of Korea’s finest p’ansori singers.
“If Volcanoes could sing, then they would sound like Il-Dong Bae. The Korean’s voice has such breadth that it not only fills physical space like a lava flow, but seems to stretch back across time”

– John Shand, ABC Jazz

Percussionist, pedagogue, vocalist, composer, improviser, Dong-Won Kim has studied various forms of traditional music from great Korean music masters. By participating in many intercultural projects, he has been devoted to sharing the profound beauty of Korean traditional culture and music with the world. He has performed in Europe, the U.S.A., Japan, and many other countries.

Sunday’s Presenters

Dani D’Emilia

Dani D’Emilia is a transfeminist artist and educator working internationally across performance art, devised theatre, visual arts and radical pedagogy projects.

Just a gap

Back to Main Program

sponsor block