Spend the Night With a Diva — or Fifteen

On Canada Day, fifteen female jazz divas will come together on one stage and flex their vocal talents for one night only at the TD Canada Trust Downtown Toronto Jazz Festival. Everything from a bona-fide six and a half octave diva, to an 11 year old diva-in-training, the Real Divas will showcase the range of vocal talent Canadian jazz has to offer.

Previously announced divas include Heather Bambrick, Emilie-Claire Barlow, Stephanie Bowskill, Eliana Cuevas, Lori Cullen, Andrea Menard, Liberty Silver, Dione Taylor and Suzie Vinnick.

Joining the stellar line-up are:

Bonnie Brett, who is firmly established as a singer of great power and finesse who swings hard.

June Garber, once called the “total package”, returns to the stage after a 13-year hiatus.

Maureen Kennedy has cultivated an extensive repertoire of memorable standards and rediscovered gems that compliment her very personal sound.

Samina, a classically trained singer, has made her foray into jazz with her first release, How I Feel.

Angela Scappatura whose music is able to carry a listener to a place of romance, soulful sweetness and pure elegance.

Melissa Stylianou, nominated for Jazz Vocalist of the Year in 2002 and 2003 at the National Jazz Awards, has developed into one of Canada’s top jazz vocalists.

Accompanying the Real Divas will be Bill King on piano; Chris Gale on saxophone; Jake Langley on guitar; Duncan Hopkins on bass; Larnell Lewis on drums; and Luis Orbegoso on percussion. Real Divas began a few years ago as a weekly series for female vocalists to come together and showcase their talent on stage. Produced by Bill King, Real Divas has recently released a second volume of the compilation CD called, Real Divas 2.

In other news, Rachid Taha will not be performing at the festival due to scheduling conflicts. Taking his place on June 29 at the Phoenix Concert Hall will be pianist and composer Bugge Wesseltoft whose music is equally at home with fans of deep house, techno, ambient, as well as traditional and experimental jazz purists.

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