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Harbourfront Centre Brings Caribbean Traditions To Life For Island Soul!

Island Soul free events at multiple venues
Friday August 4 – Monday August 7, 2006 (235 Queens Quay West, Toronto)
Public Information: 416-973-4000 or www.harbourfrontcentre.com

TORONTO, July 13, 2006- Harbourfront Centre will be transformed into a haven of tropical delights and an oasis of Caribbean culture for Island Soul taking place August 4 through August 7, 2006! Representing a broad spectrum of past and present Pan-Caribbean and Caribbean diaspora life, Island Soul will feature superstar concerts from The Mighty Sparrow and Tony Rebel, a celebration of Rastafarian culture, and a tribute to the legacy of Chinese people in the Caribbean region.

For our 2006 festivities, Island Soul will provide an exciting variety of savoury island food, riveting film, rousing live music, probing panel discussions, captivating dance performances and stellar visual art of local and international Caribbean origin. Island Soul is supported by Upfront Theatre Foundation and Masani Productions, Ryerson Caribbean Research Centre, Tsung Tsin (Hakka)Association of Ontario and Fui Toong On Society. All concerts and events are free admission! A schedule is attached.

MUSIC- International acts returning to Toronto will be renowned calypsonian The Mighty Sparrow(Grenada), Rastafarian legend Tony Rebel (Jamaica); and soca star Roy Cape and the Kaiso All-Stars (Trinidad and Tobago). Jump back into time with retro reggae selector Aba Shaka and The Ark of Covenant Sound; also performing will be New York’s latest burgeoning soul star Eric Roberson, aka Erro.

To further underscore Harbourfront Centre’s ongoing Power of Place theme, Island Soul includes top Canadian and Toronto talent with diverse Caribbean influences. Black Market shares their Cuban timba sounds; Mika brings his hybrid of contemporary Haitian and R&B music; award winning reggae singer Blessed will drop his smooth vocals; hip hop super-group Big Black Lincoln grace Tdot with a highly anticipated performance; Idaban And Friends will delight with roots reggae; sweet sounds will ring from Joy Lapps, aka The Pan Princess and pan will echo throughout the weekend from Afropan, Pan Fantasy and St. James Town Youth Steel Pan Orchestra, who will also be serving up pan workshops; and Soul on Ice led by DJ Sean Sax dish up musical flavour for your soul.

DANCE- This weekend features Toronto experts in Caribbean rhythm and movement with Ire Omo Afro-Cuban Drum and Dance Ensemble; Fire Culture of the Islands and Caribbean Dance Ensemble; and for some contemporary vibes, Majestic step up to the plate and Twisted Hair Spirit Dancers bridge the gap between generations. Island Soul audiences can try their turn in Reggaerobics and Socacise with Tamla Matthews.

FOOD- Island Soul would not be complete without the tasty delicacies of the Caribbean. Grab your Pan-Caribbean passport and prepare for a Haitian Culinary Demo with Coco Banana; a spicy battle royale ROTI Cook-Off to crown the 2006 Roti King; a mouth watering Jerk Demo; sampling Caribbean Hakka cuisine from Chef Herbert Lee; and delicious Trini Pelau with Joan Pierre.

LITERARY ARTS – Island Soul offers a Reading and Panel Forum with famed Jamaican poet, Reverend Easton Lee followed by a panel discussion including Ray Chen, Richard Fung and Janet Kong, examining the lives of the Caribbean’s Chinese minority.

VISUAL ARTS- Throughout the entire Island Soul weekend, Harbourfront Centre curates Chinese in Jamaica and Trinidad- A Retrospective Photo Exhibition with special guest artist, Ray Chen, a historic showcase marking the 200th year of Chinese culture in Trinidad and Tobago.

FILMIsland Soul includes the Canadian premiere of 2 important Caribbean stories on screen. Women West Indies is a selection of 6 portraits of outstanding women from the Caribbean and It’s All About Dancing takes an in depth look inside the world of Jamaican dancehall; Caribbean Animated Magic Series are delightful short films for the young at heart; Chinese in the Caribbean Showcase provides a special focus on the Caribbean’s Chinese legacy with two films.

KIDS – Harbourfront Centre is pleased to present Calypso 101 for the young ones; Music workshops with famed children’s musical entertainer Asheba (Trinidad and Tobago). Island Soul also offers Carnival Costumes Make and Take.

RASTAFEST- RASTAFARI ARTS AND KULCHA FESTIVAL is a multi-discipline festival showcasing different aspects of the Rastafarian culture. The festival draws from the rich and diverse global Rastafarian lifestyle and history. Activities include Music, Dance, Drumming, Arts and Crafts, Ital cooking, and Film screenings. Rastafest is a co-production of Upfront Theatre Foundation and Masani Productions.

Below is a list of performances for Island Soul.

Friday August 4
Dance – Iré Omó Afro-Cuban Drum and Dance Ensemble (7 p.m. - Toronto Star Stage)
Latin Caribbean rhythms with soca and calypso vibes come alive during this colourful and moving dance performance.
Music – Black Market (8 p.m. - Harbourfront Centre Concert Stage)
Energetic Cuban Timba band led by master drummer, Robelcys Martinez.
Music – The Mighty Sparrow (9:30 p.m. - Harbourfront Centre Concert Stage)
Undisputed Grenada-born Trinidadian Calypso King. Artist Website
Visual Art – Chinese in Jamaica and Trinidad: A Retrospective Photo Exhibition with artist Ray Chen (Marilyn Brewer Community Space - various hours)
RastaFest
RastaMarket (6 p.m. - 12 a.m. - Lakeside Terrace Tent)
Browse and shop for local and international Rastafarian fares. The items on display range from handmade jewellery to drums.

Saturday August 5
Kids – Carnival Costumes Make and Take(1 p.m. - 5 p.m. - Harbourfront Centre Kidz Tent)
Dance – Fire Culture of the Islands (9 p.m. - Toronto Star Stage)
Visual Art – Chinese in Jamaica and Trinidad: A Retrospective Photo Exhibition with guest artist Ray Chen (Marilyn Brewer Community Space - various hours)
RastaFest
RastaMarket (12 p.m. - 12 a.m. - Lakeside Terrace Tent)
Browse and shop for local and international Rastafarian fares. The items on display range from handmade jewellery to drums.
Dance – Majestics (1 p.m. - Toronto Star Stage)
A youth hip hop, reggae and calypso dance troupe.
Dance – Twisted Hair Spirit Dancers (2 p.m. - Toronto Star Stage)
Music – Trinity Drummers (3 p.m. - Toronto Star Stage)
A group of drummers and chanters from the Ethiopian Orthodox Church.
Music – SuperheavyREGGAE On The Lawn with Humble, Treson, Kiwana, Horace Martin, Ricky Husbands and Chester Miller (6 p.m. – Toronto Star Stage)
Music – Blessed with Lindo P (8 p.m. - Harbourfront Centre Stage)
Music – Tony Rebel (9:30 p.m. - Harbourfront Centre Concert Stage)
Legendary Jamaican Rastafarian merges dancehall rhythms with conscious roots lyrics. Artist Website
Music – Aba Shaka and the Ark of the Kovenant Sound (11 p.m. – Brigantine Room -- Late Night Now – Presented by Brahma) Atlanta and NYC showcase of rare innovative dub and Reggae music. Artist Website

Sunday August 6
Food – Haitian Culinary Demo with Coco Banana (12:30 - Lakeside Terrace)
Kids – Carnival Costumes Make and Take(1 p.m. - 5 p.m. - Harbourfront Centre Kidz Tent)
Dance – Caribbean Dance Theatre (1:30 p.m. - Toronto Star Stage)
Music – MIKA (2 p.m. - Harbourfront Centre Concert Stage)
Haitian-Canadian musical wunderkind innovatively blends Caribbean and urban pop sounds. Artist Website
Music – St. James Town Youth Steel Orchestra (3:00 p.m. - Ann Tindal Lawn)
Music – Afropan (3:30 pm - Harboufront Centre Concert Stage)
Toronto’s oldest community steelband led by Earl La Pierre.
Film – Women West Indies (4 p.m. - Studio Theatre)
Canadian premier of six short portraits of outstanding women from the Caribbean (15 minutes each) part of a 66 portrait series.
Dance Workshop – Reggaerobics and Socacise with Tamla Matthews (4:30 p.m. - Ann Tindal Lawn)
A dance workshop for all ages that uses reggae/dancehall and calypso/soca music to
fuel stretching, cardio and toning.
Music Workshop – Pan Workshop: St. James Town Youth Steel Orchestra (4:30 p.m. - Brigantine Room)
Talented youths from the St. James Town Youth Steel Orchestra will teach audience how to play to steel pan in this 30 minutes one-on-one session.
Food – ROTI Cook-Off! (5:30 p.m. - Lakeside Terrace) Audience members will have a chance to sit on a judges panel to sample and decide the Roti King.
Music – Pan on the Lawn: Pan Fantasy (5:30 p.m. - Ann Tindal Lawn)
Film – It's All About Dancing (6:30 p.m. - Studio Theatre)
This Jamaican film incorporates the best of the dancehall selectors, DJ’s and dancers.
Music – Big Black Lincoln (8 p.m. - Harbourfront Centre Concert Stage)
Toronto hip-hop soul super group gets funky.
Dance – Fire Culture of the Islands (9 p.m. - Toronto Star Stage)
Music – Eric Roberson aka Erro (9:30 p.m. - Harbourfront Centre Concert Stage)
New Jersey songwriter performs his anthemic soul and house numbers. Artist Website
Music – Soul on Ice (11 p.m. - Brigantine Room -Late Night Now –Presented by Brahma)
Soul music, house and grooves DJ set.
Visual Art – Chinese in Jamaica and Trinidad: A Retrospective Photo Exhibition with guest artist Ray Chen (Marilyn Brewer Community Space - various hours)
RastaFest
RastaMarket (12 p.m. - 12 a.m. - Lakeside Terrace Tent)
Browse and shop for local and international Rastafarian fares. The items on display range from handmade jewellery to drums.
Film – Roaring Lion (2 p.m. - Studio Theatre)
Food – Rasta Pasta (3:30 p.m. - Lakeside Terrace)

Monday August 7
Food – Jerk Demo (12:30 p.m. - Lakeside Terrace)
Music Workshop – Asheba (12:30 p.m. & 2:30 p.m. - Harbourfront Centre Kidz Tent)
Putumayo World Music recording artist and storyteller leads group to compose their own Calypso song together.
Dance Workshop – Reggaerobics and Socacise with Tamla Matthews (1 p.m. - Ann Tindal Lawn)
Film – Caribbean Animated Magic Series (1:30 p.m. - Studio Theatre)
These two colourful animated short films will delight both the young and the young at heart.
Music – Joy Lapps a.k.a. The Pan Princess (2 p.m. - Toronto Star Stage)
Literary – Chinese Caribbean: Reverend Easton Lee Reading and Panel Forum (2 p.m. - Brigantine Room)
A special reading, followed by an intimate discussion about being a Caribbean minority,and the legacy of shopkeepers with Easton Lee, Ray Chen, video artist Richard Fung, Janet Kong, and legendary Byron Lee the Dragon. Hosted by Gail Scala.
Food – Hakka Caribbean Cuisine with Chef Herbert Lee (2:30 p.m. - Lakeside Terrace) Jamaica's “Uncle Herbert” cooks Mookyee Chicken with Preserved Vegetables and Pork Stuffed Tofu.
Music – Ibadan and Friends ( 3 p.m. - Harbourfront Centre Concert Stage)
Celebrated roots reggae outfit.
Film – Women West Indies (3:30 p.m. - Studio Theatre)
Canadian premier of six short portraits of outstanding women from the Caribbean
(15 minutes each) part of a 66 portrait series.
Music – Asheba (4 p.m. - Toronto Star Stage)
Putumayo World Music recording artist and storyteller specializes in children’s entertainment.
Music – Roy Cape and Kaiso All-Stars (4:30 p.m. – Harbourfront Centre Concert Stage -- part of the Pepsi Concert Series) The Duke Ellington of Calypso music returns with his celebrated band. Artist Website
Film – Chinese in the Caribbean Showcase (5 p.m. - Studio Theatre)
A short film and a feature combined to showcase the Caribbean through the eyes of Chinese filmmakers.
Food- Trini Pelau with Coconut Milk by Joan Pierre (5:30 p.m. - Lakeside Terrace)
Visual Art – Chinese in Jamaica and Trinidad: A Retrospective Photo Exhibition with guest artist Ray Chen (Marilyn Brewer Community Space - various hours)
RastaFest
RastaMarket (12 p.m. - 6 p.m. - Lakeside Terrace Tent)
Browse and shop for local and international Rastafarian fares. The items on display range from handmade jewellery to drums.

Attention Media: For more summer information and festival releases go to www.harbourfrontcentre.com/wr/info/media.php
Harbourfront Centre Focus - The Power Of Place
Geography, history, memory all guide us as we struggle to find a sense of belonging and identity. They can direct us as clearly as a map or a compass. But does your heritage define you or does it make you part of a community? Do you belong to your neighborhood or does it belong to you? What is your place in the world? Power of Place is part of an ongoing exploration of ideas-based programming at Harbourfront Centre, June through December 2006.
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Media Contact:
For Harbourfront Centre:
Shane Gerard, 416-973-4655, sgerard@harbourfrontcentre.com
Bill Bobek, 416-973-4428, wbobek@harbourfrontcentre.com
Wendy Vincent, 416-973-4518, wvincent@harbourfrontcentre.com


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