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Zach Robertson and Maren Kathleen Elliott: Heartbreak and Hope


Zach Robertson (guitar, voice) and Maren Kathleen Elliott (viola/fiddle, voice) first met in 2013 while performing at a recital for MacEwan University's jazz and contemporary music program in Edmonton. Over the years, they have enjoyed jamming, busking, and playing gigs together around town.


As a duo, Zach and Maren love to pull together elements of their different music backgrounds, with Zach bringing in old-time country, bluegrass & blues while Maren draws inspiration from her training in classical viola, fiddling, and her fondness for folk music. They both have a passion for music that tells stories and explores matters of the heart.

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Namitha Rathinappallia: Something Worth a Lineage

Radical Connections Artist, Namitha Rathinappallia (she/they) is a fat, queer, disabled, Tamil published spoken word poet, organizer, and workshop facilitator. She writes about belonging, resilience, and joy found and fostered as acts of simultaneous self-care and resistance.


They have been creating, performing, commissioning, and competing as a poet, locally and nationally, since 2018. Currently based in Toronto, she lives with her partner and their two cats, Halloumi and Paneer.


Kate Weekes will perform a mix of contemporary folk originals and traditional music with influences of Appalachian old-time, Delta Blues and pieces by her peers in the Canadian folk music scene. Kate will perform on acoustic guitar and banjo.

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Gatineau based artist, Aymara Alvarado Sanchez is a community focused artist who loves bringing the opportunity for creativity to equity deserving communities. In addition to bringing art to people in care through Radical Connections, she works for the LAB in Hull, a place of expression and artistic creation for young people aged 16 to 30 at risk of experiencing problems related to drug addiction, homelessness and social exclusion.


Whether on sax, keyboard or microphone, Aymara Sanchez has participated in several collectives and musical projects such as Fire Queen. Currently she belongs to the band Bonnie Doon. She has performed at numerous locations from the Blues Fest local stage, SAW Gallery to DAIMON.  At her upcoming Live Stream Aymara will offer electronic music, saxophone and opera, a mix of contemporary avant garde with a touch of fun! 


Chas Guay is an East Coast  Singer/Songwriter. He will play selected folk and sixties classics mixed with some originals. Chas is the recipient of the East Coast Music Award for Musical Achievement. He is a recording artist, who has worked in musical theatre for twenty-five years. Songwriting is his main focus and he continues to perform in the Ottawa area as a singer/songwriter under the guise of Drifting Bird.


Words from the artist: “Music has served me well throughout my life and I enjoy sharing the value of harmony, melody, and rhythm. My experience in musical theatre has revealed how animation and a good smile goes hand-in-hand with enriching any experience. I have seen music to be a great connector.”

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Kim Kilpatrick was always a storyteller, and loves to work with people. She is proud to be a totally blind artist. Kim has told stories and facilitated storytelling in dementia and palliative-care units, in schools, seniors programs, and disability groups. On stage, Kim has created and performed three one-woman shows in festivals and theatres all across Canada. She presented “Raising Stanley / Life with Tulia”(2018) at the Lunch-Box Theatre in Calgary this past March. During the pandemic she created the show “Dangerous Touch” (2022). This April she will present the first part of “Flying in the Dark” (2011) for the Healing Interactive Performance series. 


“A character in one of the wonderful books my parents read to me said she was afraid of the dark. Afraid of the dark? I couldn’t understand it. Why would anyone be afraid of the dark?” Thus begins Kim’s one-woman show “Flying in the dark”. A show about a child, blind since birth, figuring out that she isn’t like everyone else. And that she is. Filled with colourful characters: parents, a sibling, friends and teasing kids. Filled with senses: hearing, touch, smell and texture. Filled with humour and insight. How does Kim learn to read? Walk to the store? Ride a bike? Meet Kim, hear her stories and you’ll realize that Kim is, in most respects, just like everyone else.


Katherine Grier tells stories from her family and adds a few short traditional tales to the mix. From the light-hearted to the serious, they're all about beating the odds in one way or another. You’ll hear sober and silly tales of strange cats, unsettling encounters, and surprising ways of facing potential disaster.

The session wraps up with Noble Thornhill, a wonderful (and true) story from her dad, about unlikely redemption in the 1940s lumber woods. It takes place over a long harsh winter and heralds spring — very appropriate to this moment.


Join actor Jennifer Vallance for an afternoon of poetry, story, and song, on the subject of the acceptance of loss, inspiration and joy. Jennifer weaves together heartfelt singing and meaningful poems which have stayed in her mind over the years.  She will also recite selections from the stories of brilliant writers which comfort and inspire.

Jennifer was born and educated in the south of England and traveled the world as a photographer before becoming a business owner in London. She emigrated to Canada is 1989 and became a singer, dancer, composer and actor in plays, musical theatre, and was the co-founder and co-songwriter in the rock band Rules of Seven. She raised 2 children as a single parent and owns her film company Girl On A Wire Productions. Now living in Toronto.

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