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WIM Canada
2024 Summit

WIM Canada presents an exciting 2-day event full of speaker sessions, workshops, and networking opportunities, March 6-7, 2024 at TD Music Hall in Toronto.

Come ask questions, meet others in the industry, and be inspired by our amazing slate of leaders. 

Tickets on sale now! Passes can be purchased for either day separately or bundle both days together and save.

Premium WIMC members receive 60% off! Not a member? Join here today.

For Ticketholders:

*For Ticketholders only*
*For Ticketholders only*
DAY 1 - March 6, 2024
9:30 - 11:00 AM

CREATIVE ASSETS REVIEW

Submit your artist links for a chance to be reviewed live by our panel of pros!

Our panelists will select a number of artist submissions for review and discuss your website, social media footprint, and press package to provide tips on how you can increase your impact and professionalism.

PRESENTED BY CANADIAN FEDERATION OF MUSICIANS 

PANELISTS

• MODERATOR: Liana White, Executive Director @ CFM

Liana White is the Executive Director of the Canadian National Office of the American Federation of Musicians of the United States and Canada (AFM/CFM). White is involved in every aspect of the unions operations, from lobbying and negotiating on behalf of musicians, to mentoring them. With over 25 years’ experience helping musicians to navigate the legal requirements to perform cross border, White has become recognized within the music industry as a leading authority on the subject. White also sits on the Board of Women in Music Canada, and on the Canadian Labour Congress Women’s & Workers of Colour Caucuses.

• Noreen Hamid, Creative Producer & PR Director

Noreen Hamid is a Publicity Director, Creative Producer, and Consultant with over 10 years of experience leading publicity campaigns for music artists, labels, international music award shows, TV series, films, and high-profile events. She also produces television series, music and entertainment news, and special events -- from award shows and red carpets, to album release showcases and art exhibits, and everything in between. After dedicated years with MuchMusic, MTV, E!, the Toronto International Film Festival, eTalk, and much more, Noreen started her own boutique company, utilizing her passion and combined experiences in Production, PR, and Strategy, and prioritizing work with artists from marginalized communities. An expert in Hip Hop, R&B, Afrobeats, and Pop music publicity, she works with several artists, labels, and projects internationally, including Megan Thee Stallion, Young Thug, Mary J. Blige, Gunna, Charlotte Cardin, TOBi, Ralph, Ruby Waters, IDMAN, RCA Records, Arista Records, 300 Entertainment, Fool’s Gold, the Oscar-nominated documentary The Cave, and as a consultant on several upcoming series and artists in development. Currently, Noreen's work touches Canada, the US, the UK, France, Ghana, Nigeria, India, parts of the Middle East, and beyond.

• Amy Eligh, Arts & Crafts Publishing

Amy Eligh began her career in Publishing at Casablanca Media / Red Brick Songs in the Copyright and Royalties department, before moving into Creative – where she
successfully stationed herself for over a decade before moving to Arts & Crafts Music. Within her role as Director of Publishing & Licensing, Amy pitches large-scale catalogue of songs for film, trailers, advertising, video games, and TV (US & Canada) as well as oversees the day to day within the department.
In addition to pitching, Amy organizes showcases for clients / songwriters with TV networks, music supervisors, and advertisers. She also develops new writers, arranges co-writing sessions, coordinates and hosts song-writing camps, and scouts for talent.
At Arts & Crafts Music, Amy works with Broken Social Scene, Dear Rouge, Old Man Saxon, Marcus Paquin, Dan Mangan, bülow, Cary Brothers, Sarah MacDougall, David
Vertesi, Jordan Klassen, Sylo and many more. Amy is also on the Board of Directors for Music Publishers Canada and the Chair of the FACTOR Board.

• Michelle Szeto, Vice President, Management Division @ Loft Entertainment

Michelle Szeto got her first taste of the entertainment industry at an early age in her hometown of Hong Kong, working in concert production for international superstars such as Oasis, Celine Dion, Boyz II Men, Sean Lennon and Prodigy. 

During her 17-year tenure at Paquin Entertainment Group, Michelle held various roles throughout the company, including publicity, tour marketing, and artist management. 

Today, in her role as Vice President, Management Division, at Loft Entertainment (in partnership with Paquin), Michelle personally manages award-winning artists and songwriter: Donovan Woods, Wild Rivers, Lindsay Ell, Devan and Babygirl.


11:15 AM - 12:15 PM

Taking the Reins: Artist Self-Management

The tools for launching your own music career have never been more accessible... But that doesn't make it any less confusing! What do you need to know to manage yourself? How can you build a team of collaborators and industry professionals on your own? And where does the money come from? This panel of experts will discuss how artists can bootstrap projects on their own and answer your questions for how to level up.

PRESENTED BY CIMA

PANELISTS

• MODERATOR: Savannah Wellman, Tiny Kingdom Music

Savannah’s experiences in the music industry have seen her on both sides of the curtain. Her journey has included a degree in music, followed by years of performing and touring in various bands, and continued at Music BC as program manager for artist development initiatives for over 7 years. Along with co-founder Meagan Davidson, Savannah launched Tiny Kingdom in 2017 as an artist management and services company, representing clients including Skye Wallace, Haley Blais, Teon Gibbs and Jasper Sloan Yip. Their expansion into a label in 2020 saw Tiny Kingdom added to a very short list of female-owned labels in Canada, and their passion for supporting other women and gender minorities lead them to spearhead the Women In Music - BC chapter. Savannah's musical and industry knowledge has been called upon as a panelist, consultant, juror, and as Chair for the MMF (Music Managers Forum Canada) and Board member of Women in Music Canada.

• Witch Prophet, Artist

Witch Prophet is a queer, East African, singer-songwriter, as well as the President and Co-CEO of women owned and operated indie label Heart Lake Records. As Witch Prophet, she provides her fans with a soundscape of vocal layers, loops, raps, and harmonies on a bed of trip-hop, neo soul and jazz inspired beats produced by her wife, DJ and business partner SUN SUN. She finds depth and connection in creating
music as a portal for self-growth and discovery. File next to Erykah Badu, Lauryn Hill, Greentea Peng and Portishead.

Witch Prophet has had the opportunity to open for multiple artists like; Tash Sultana, Sudan Archives, JPEGMAFIA, Pierre Kwenders, CLIPPING, Lido Pimienta, Begonia, and Snotty Nose Rez Kids to name a few.

Her 2020 album 'DNA Activation' was shortlisted for the prestigious Polaris Music Prize and her most recent album 'Gateway Experience', was long listed for the 2023 Polaris Music Prize. She was featured in the Toronto Star where her album was reviewed and quoted as being "a transfixing journey" and a "trippy dive into the nexus of health, spirituality and human connection".

• Aisha Wickham, Ontario Creates

Developing and promoting Canada’s music industry has been the primary focus of Aisha’s career. She is currently a Program Consultant for the Ontario Music Office at Ontario Creates. In this role, she manages funding programs and implements strategic initiatives to support economic development within the province’s music industry.

Aisha was part of the management team that launched Canada’s first Black-owned radio station, FLOW 93.5, and has also worked in senior management positions with G98.7 FM, Nia Centre for the Arts, the Urban Music Association of Canada, and the Canadian Independent Recording Artists’ Association of Canada. She ran her own communications consulting practice, ngoma productions, for a number of years, specializing in project management, business plan development and writing services for the music and broadcasting sectors.

Some of the committees that Aisha has served on include: Toronto Arts Council Music Committee, National Advisory Board for the Foundation Assisting Canadian Talent on Recordings (FACTOR), JUNO Awards nomination committees (R&B/Soul), Ryerson
University Alumni Association Board, and Community Engagement Council for the Toronto 2015 PanAm/ParapanAm Games.

Aisha is the recipient of the National Association of Black Female Executives in Music and Entertainment (NABFEME) Award for Behind the Scenes Executive of the Year, the Canadian New Media Award for Outstanding Young Woman and the Harry Jerome Award
for leadership. She holds a Bachelor of Applied Arts degree in Radio and Television Arts from Toronto Metropolitan University (formerly Ryerson University).


12:30-1:30

FIRESIDE LUNCH: BREAKOUT ARTISTS

Breakout artist Begonia chats with Bee Ramesh about her journey - an impressive rise that includes 2 recent Juno nominations, a spot on the 2023 Polaris Music Prize shortlist, and being named one of NPR’s Artists You Need to Know.

Lunch: Grab'n'Go lunches are included with your ticket!

• BREAKOUT ARTIST: BEGONIA

Pegged as Canada’s breakout alt-diva, Begonia has built a legion of fans online and at her legendary live shows. Her critically acclaimed discography includes Lady In Mind EP (2017), Fear (2019), and Powder Blue (2023).

Among her accolades, she has two JUNO nominations (2021, 2024, Adult Alternative Album of the Year), two Polaris Prize nominations, multiple #1 songs on CBC Radio, and was named one of NPR’s Artists You Need to Know. Her sophomore album, Powder Blue emerged in early 2023 and confronts themes of sexuality, self-discovery, acceptance and empowerment. The album was named one of CBC Music’s Best Canadian Albums
of 2023 (#7) and was shortlisted for the 2023 Polaris Music Prize.

Begonia’s live performance is world-class. She has been playing sold-out clubs and theatres in North America and recently supported indie-all-star Leith Ross on their European tour. Her vocal prowess has the power to absolutely floor an audience, as evidenced at her Polaris Gala performance. She is riding a wave of momentum with a record number of people discovering Powder Blue and becoming super-fans. Begonia is a standout Canadian talent, and the world is beginning to take notice.

• INTERVIEWED BY: Bee Ramesh

Bee Ramesh, aka Eboshi, is a marketing strategist, director, producer, and multidisciplinary artist. At Birthday Cake Media, Bee works on the label side for Marketing & Sales; tailoring unique approaches for social media, rolling out releases, and running internal publicity. As Eboshi, she is one half of the experimental hip-hop group, Cartel Madras, and a founding member of interdisciplinary art and production house, FOREIGNERZ. She is passionate about platforming artists and developing their brand so they can share their stories with authenticity.
Signed to Sub Pop Records in 2019, Bee has toured North America and Europe, performing in major festivals; SXSW, Reeperbahn, Pop-Kultur Berlin, and Barcelona Acció Musical (BAM).
Cartel Madras has been featured in Billboard, GQ India, and NME and has had their music in the soundtracks of Hulu's "Shrill", EA Games FC24 and UFC4, and Netflix's "Trinkets". Through nightlife and event production, Eboshi has also hosted many notable events such as Boiler Room Toronto, The Otherworld: A Fashion Experience, She Rocks - a South Asian Women in
Music Showcase, and the 2023 Calgary Pride Gala. FRNRZ Media is currently developing a new scripted series.
Birthday Cake Media is a record label and management company that is committed to elevating and celebrating the diverse and uniquely talented artists on our roster. We strive to create and nurture successful, sustainable music careers globally, with a commitment to integrity, kindness, and resilience. Some of our artists include The Bros. Landreth, Begonia, Field Guide, and Slow
Leaves.


1:45-2:45 PM

Mental Health & Wellness in the Industry

Let's face it - the music industry wasn't built around best practices for mental health. It's fast-paced, and can be dog-eat-dog or even downright predatorial. So how do we carve out habits, systems, and supports for individual and communal mental health and wellness? Our panelists share their expertise on how to thrive during high-stress times like recording and touring, discuss how to build healthy creative teams, and point us toward resources that are especially useful for the music community.

PRESENTED BY TORONTO MUSICIANS ASSOCIATION

PANELISTS

• MODERATOR: Catherine Harrison, President, Revelios Mental Health

Catherine Harrison, M.A. Psych, P.C.C., is a Canadian musician, mental health strategy consultant, leadership expert, author, speaker, certified executive coach, and advocate for inclusive and equitable well-being. As the founder and president of Revelios, she aims to improve our collective mental health literacy and social fitness through education, reducing stigma, and facilitating open, courageous conversations. Over the past several years, Catherine has been active in illuminating the unique mental health challenges that musicians and crew experience. She is a trusted advisor to several national and international non-profit music organizations and provides non-clinical mental health support to Canadian music industry professionals.

• Michelle Allman-Esdaille, CEO @ Sustainable Creative Living

Michelle Allman-Esdaille, a visionary leader, is transforming the creative industry through her brainchild, The Hook & Company, a Toronto-based hub for artist services. As an accomplished artist manager and business owner, Michelle is renowned for her influence, including being the pioneering force behind The HOOK Sync Group, Canada's premier sync agency helmed by a Black woman, championing inclusivity. At ADVANCE, Canada’s Black Music Business Collective, Michelle drives operations and talent acquisition, actively fostering growth in the Black music scene. Her commitment extends to Sustainable Creative Living, a platform where she leverages her decade-long experience to empower export-ready artists and industry professionals through programming designed in partnership with MuCruu, a liaison export company. 

To add to the list, Michelle is a Reiki practitioner and author of a collaborative anthology book entitled "You Have So Much Potential - Inspiring Generation Healing & Transformation" with 29 other doctors and practitioners showcasing her multifaceted commitment to empowering others, making her a true pioneer in the industry.

• Maylee Todd, Artist

Maylee Todd, based in Los Angeles, is a multimedia/interdisciplinary artist with expertise in performance art, music production, dance, AR/VR performance, and curation. She has seamlessly integrated various artistic disciplines into a series of multimedia performances, complemented by her self-produced records. Notable works include "Maylee Todd's Musical Planetarium" (2013), "Inamorata" (2016), "Virtual Womb" (2015-2019) with international tours and features on CBC's Exhibitionists, and "Psychonaut Experiments" (2018-2020), earning her a nomination for the Inaugural Johanna Metcalf Performing Arts Prize.

Maylee's music career boasts self-produced records like "Choose Your Own Adventure" (2010) and "Escapology" (2013), reaching number 10 on the Tokyo International Billboard Charts. Her song "Baby's Got It" received SOCAN Songwriting Award and Prism Prize nominations.

Her science fiction album "MALOO" (2022) on Stones Throw Records featured live motion capture, winning the AIM Awards' 'Best Creative Campaign' and making history as the first avatar to perform on NPR's Tiny Desk Home Concert Series. The track "Grab Your Guts" from MALOO earned a SOCAN Best Song Writing nomination.

Maylee is a music producer for CBC and Netflix's "Workin Moms," receiving the CASMA Canadian Screen Music Award for Best Original Score for the final series "The End." Currently, she tours a project using an EEG headband to convert her brainwaves into music, showcased at Elevate Fest Canada's Largest Tech Summit. She collaborates with The Lincoln Centre for Performing Arts in New York on the "Woman and Non-Binary In Tech Series." Recently nominated for the 2024 Woman In Music Honours International Achievement Award, Maylee Todd continues to push boundaries in the intersection of art and technology.

• Kathryn Hummel, Manager Programs & Services @ UNISON

Kathryn Hummel’s extensive experience in the music industry has included work with Canadian Music Week, Indie Week, FACTOR, Royalty Records and her own Artist Management and Marketing company, launched in 2005, representing award-winning artists including Hey Romeo, Tenille, Chris Buck Band, Olivia Penelva and Teigen Gayse to name a few.

In 2019 Hummel combined her passions for wellness and music, by joining forces with The Unison Fund. She is now Unison’s Manager of Programs & Services, overseeing the financial support programs and counseling & health solutions offered to Canadian music workers.

Kathryn is trained and well-versed in the topic of mental health and is passionate about the need to take better care of our community and assist in creating more services available to both musicians and industry in need.


3:00 - 4:00 PM

Innovating Income Streams

From playlisting to subscription-based communities, merch sales to licensing, artists, their teams, and the apps that support them are finding innovative new ways to get paid. These experts chime in on best practices, untapped resources, and emerging trends in diversifying income for artists and the people who support them.

PRESENTED BY ACTRA:RACS

PANELISTS

• LaTasha Alcindor, Artist

Melding the rhythms of hip-hop and dance with the future of blockchain, LATASHÁ emerges as a distinctive polymath at the crossroads of music, art, and technology. Beyond her accolades as a singer-songwriter and producer, she is a tech visionary, pioneering the integration of music with blockchain. Anchored in powerful tales of Black femininity and empowerment, LATASHÁ masterfully employs innovative tech, from NFTs to Midi controllers, to resonate her narratives even louder.

• Monika Chmielewska, Senior Legal & Business Affairs, Third Side Music
Monika is a lawyer working in the Legal & Business Affairs department at independent music publisher Third Side Music. She handles negotiations for synchronization requests (for film, TV, ads, trailers, and video games) and sample uses worldwide. In addition to her role at TSM, she is involved with the Conseil des arts de Montréal as a member of the Music Evaluation Committee, and is also pursuing graduate studies in Arts & Culture Management at HEC Montréal. 
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DAY 2 - March 7, 2024
10:00 - 11:00 AM

Beyond Genre: Creating & Branding in a post-genre world

From Alt R&B to Liquid DnB, Chillhop to Afrobeats, Synthwave to Slowcore, genres are becoming more fluid and listeners can discover new trends and artists via social media and cross-genre streaming playlists. How does this affect how music is made, represented, and promoted in the industry? Are micro-genre playlists the way to break hybrid artists? How can category-driven awards stay relevant in a landscape that is evolving faster than ever? Our experts chime in from the artist to the industry side of the biz.

PANELISTS

• MODERATOR: Melissa Vincent, Journalist

Melissa Vincent is a music journalist, researcher, and strategist based in Toronto. Her work broadly investigates questions of equity, intimacy, and community formation as it relates to music, technology, and culture. She's been featured in Elle Canada, Pitchfork, Billboard, NPR Music, The Globe and Mail, The Fader, and Vice. In 2022, she was nominated for the 7th annual Digital Publishing Awards by the National Media Awards Foundation in the category of “Best Science and Technology Storytelling.” She has moderated panels around the world, and on a somewhat frequent basis, CBC’s The National will ask her to talk about breaking music stories. In the past, she's led the strategy for content platforms operated by Blue Ant Media, Universal Music Canada, and Banger Films, including producing a podcast an 8-part music docuseries on Netflix. She's a Prism Prize juror, a SOCAN Songwriting Prize Panelist, and Polaris Prize jury foreperson and board member. She's currently completing a graduate fellowship at the McLuhan Centre for Culture and Technology at the University of Toronto.

• Jess Huddleston, Editorial Lead @ Spotify Canada

Jess Huddleston is currently the Editorial Lead for Spotify Canada, where she oversees a team of music curators who craft playlists and on-platform programming north of the border. Jess comes from a music journalism background — writing for Complex, VICE, CLASH and more before landing at MuchMusic and then CBC Music, where she led a team of music journalists and hosted a music talk show called The Intro. With over 15 years in Canadian music media, Jess is most passionate about shining a spotlight on emerging Canadian talent, and helping to export those incredible sounds to other parts of the world.

• Dani Deahl, DJ/Producer, Head of Communications & Creator Insights @ BandLab

As a prominent figure in music, Dani Deahl has been at the forefront of artist discovery and meaningful industry change for over a decade. She currently is a DJ, producer, and artist advocate. She developed the coverage for the intersection of music and technology for The Verge, helmed YouTube series The Future of Music, and is Governor for the Recording Academy Chicago chapter.

When performing, she crafts house sets that are technically savvy and explore her roots in Chicago’s storied music history through a contemporary lens. Her sound expands across tech house, bright, upbeat grooves, chugging percussion, and soul and disco-infusions.

She has a regular presence on Twitch with the flagship show Demo Drop and can also be found on Clubhouse, where she runs the platform’s largest dance music club, World of EDM.

As an artist herself, Dani has released with labels like Dim Mak, Monstercat, Flamingo, Cr2, and Armada. She has also been the subject of two documentaries, toured extensively across the globe, played festivals like Spring Awakening, Lollapalooza, and EDC, venues like Wrigley Field (with Fall Out Boy), hosted her own terrestrial radio show in Spain and the Canary Islands, and has been an official Red Bull DJ. She has headlined with or been direct support for artists like Alison Wonderland, Valentino Khan, Deadmau5, Diplo, Steve Aoki, NERVO, LP Giobbi, and countless others. As Diplo himself says: "She's awesome."

Dani also previously held editorial positions with NYLON Magazine and DJ Mag, and she is the host of YouTube series The Future of Music, which features stars like Charli XCX and Oak Felder, producer for Kehlani and Demi Lovato. Her writing appears in countless publications like VICE, Mixmag, Festival Insider, CNBC, OCTOBER, The Verge, Insomniac, and more.

Dani has been heralded for her impact in music by Music Business Worldwide, Music Week, Variety, Billboard, Yahoo, Chicago Tribune, and many others. She's also a prominent expert and fierce advocate on the topic of gender equality in dance music, with speaking engagements at TEDx, Spotify for Artists, Wallifornia, Reeperbahn, and more.

In 2020, she partnered with Bandsintown and Twitter to launch Net.Werk, a Twitch festival dedicated to underrepresented acts in dance. Featuring acts like Michael Brun, Varien, and GG Magree, the festival’s viewership consistently outperformed competing Twitch festivals.

Additionally, Dani has been a guest and expert voice for MSNBC and on podcasts like Reset, Vergecast, Switched on Pop, Ari’s Take, and more.

As of 2023, Dani is also an elected Governor for the Recording Academy’s Chicago Chapter, engaging in outreach and professional development for the music community.

• Hill Kourkoutis, Producer/Engineer/Artist

Hill Kourkoutis is a JUNO Award-winning producer, songwriter, composer, mixer, recording engineer, multi-instrumentalist, artist, and director.

Spanning her career, Hill has contributed either as producer, mixer and/or songwriter on albums and singles for Aysanabee ("Nomads" #1 CBC Radio, #1 Alternative Rock Radio, Top 30 Canada Modern Rock Airplay, JUNO award-nominated and Polaris Short-List album ‘Watin’), Leela Gilday (JUNO and CFMA award-winning album ‘North Star Calling’), Digging Roots (“SKODEN” Top 30 Alternative Radio, JUNO award-winning album ‘Zhawenim’), SATE (JUNO award-nominated album ‘The Fool’, 2022 Polaris Prize nominee), Royal Wood, Cassie Dasilva (TikTok 1mm+ viral single “Unsolicited Contact”), Jules (“Before You Picked Her” #1 CBC, Top 40 Alternative Rock Radio), Meghan Patrick ('Grace & Grit' CCMA Nominated Album of the Year), POESY ("Strange Little Girl" Top 40 Alternative Rock Radio) and Amanda Rheaume (‘The Spaces In Between’ #1 Album on the earshot! National Folk/Roots/Blues Chart, CFMA award-winning album). 

She has also written and produced songs for children’s television shows including the theme songs for Remy and Boo (CBC/Universal Kids) and Dino Ranch (CBC/Disney) and episodic songs for Thomas & Friends: All Engines Go (Netflix). Syncs include commercial placements for Cadillac, Virgin Mobile and Tim Horton’s and television shows/films including Station 19, Private Eyes, Offspring, Bloodthirsty, Kim’s Convenience, Killjoys, Degrassi and Hometown Hockey. In addition to these projects, she has released her own music through several projects including Drowning Girl and Hill & The Sky Heroes.

As a multi-instrumentalist, Kourkoutis has had the honour of accompanying artists such as Serena Ryder, The Weeknd, Martha and the Muffins and Tara Slone. For two seasons, Hill also performed as guitarist in the house band for Scott Borchetta's CTV series, 'The Launch'.

As a music video director, she has directed videos for Mother Mother, Sass Jordan, Serena Ryder, and Alex Cuba.

In 2022, she became the first woman to be nominated and to win a JUNO for Recording Engineer of the Year.

Hill primarily works out of her private recording studio in Toronto, The Lair. When taking a respite from studio duties, Hill enjoys mentoring and teaching audio production for a variety of different music schools, organizations, universities, and music festivals. Hill also serves on the Board of Directors for The Songwriters Association of Canada and sits on the Manitoba Music Advisory Committee.


11:15 AM - 12:15 PM

Growing a Grassroots Community

Now more than ever, artists have the tools to reach their audiences directly. But this wealth of tools, platforms, and techniques can overwhelm emerging artists looking to build meaningful connections with fans. How can artists effectively cut through the noise to grow and activate their communities both in person and online?

PANELISTS

• Josephine Cruz (aka Jayemkayem), DJ/Producer

Josephine Cruz aka JAYEMKAYEM is a DJ, radio host and music curator currently based in Toronto. Whether she’s making appearances at some of Toronto’s most high profile events; or traveling abroad to play such iconic venues as Le Bain in New York City, the Echoplex in Los Angeles or Le Baron in Shanghai, she’s constantly spreading good vibes and good times with her eclectic selections that span the genres of rap/trap, R&B, grime, UK garage and beyond. She was a music journalist before ever stepping behind the decks, so it makes sense that this Calgary transplant has become known for her progressive sets that have seen her play venues across the world—from Montreal to New York to Indonesia—as well as share the decks with such names as Venus X, Virgil Abloh, Stretch Armstrong, Boi-1da and more; and open for such artists as Skepta, Playboi Carti and AJ Tracey. She is also the co-founder of Toronto’s first pop-up radio station, Istolethesoul FM.

• Alica Hall, Executive Director, Nia Centre for the Arts

Alica Hall has been working at the intersection of art, communications and community development for over a decade. As a leader with deep roots in the community, she has served as the Co-Chair of Pride Toronto, helping the organization expand its strategic and artistic infrastructure. She oversaw the expansion of the festival from 10-days to a month and led the development of the organization's first strategic plan. Over the years, Alica has formalized her practice as a curator through community based spaces and partnerships. Her curatorial practice is driven by a desire to explore identity and power, excavate lesser-known stories and a commitment to expand visual narratives surrounding the Black experience. In 2018, she took on the role of Executive Director at Nia Centre for the Arts, a Toronto-based charity that supports and showcases arts from across the Black diaspora in Canada. In her time at the Centre, she has curated their first Art Fair, doubled the operating budget and raised $12-million in capital funding. In 2023, Alica opened the doors of the newly renovated Nia Centre for the Arts: a 14,000 sq. ft facility serving as Canada’s first professional, multidisciplinary Black arts centre. Located in historic Little Jamaica, the Centre is a gathering space for Black artists, young creatives and community to showcase, support and promote artistic traditions from Canada’s Black diaspora. 


12:30 - 1:30 PM

Leadership Inspiration Series

In keeping with WIM Canada's focus on leadership in 2024, we're bringing together TikTok's Kat Kernaghan and SiriusXM's Michelle Mearns in a conversation with Journalist and CBC host, A. Harmony. Enjoy a grab'n'go lunch as these trailblazers talk career path, tips, tricks and inspiration for leadership in today's music industry in Canada.

PANELISTS

• Kat Kernaghan - Head of Music, TikTok Canada
Having dedicated her post-secondary studies to pursuing 2 degrees (a degree in Media Studies & a degree from the Ivey School of Business), Katrina "Kat" Kernaghan began her career in live music, working at Corus Entertainment. From there, Kat landed a job with Wax Records as Head of Marketing, while also serving as the day-to-day manager for indie-pop artist bülow.
Kat joined the TikTok Canada team in March 2021 as Label & Industry Partnerships Manager, leading several projects including the re-launch of MuchMusic, coordinating two TikTok Tailgates with the NHL, and serving as the go-to-market lead for TikTok's Ticketmaster integration.
In August of 2022, Kat moved into the role of Head of Music for Canada, leading the country's music operations team.
• Michelle Mearns - Vice President, Programming & Operations at SiriusXM Canada

As Vice President, Programming & Operations at SiriusXM Canada, Michelle oversees all aspects of programming and network operations, including sports, talk, comedy and music groups. She also oversees SiriusXM’s repeater systems, broadcast facilities and enterprise operations.

With over 20 years of experience in streaming, podcasts, digital marketing and partnership development in music and entertainment, Michelle previously led growth initiatives, strategy and content marketing at Apple (Canada). Prior to that, she led all marketing and communications activity for both Twitter Canada and Facebook Canada. She was also previously the marketing and communications lead for CBC Music, and worked on promoting artists as part of Universal Music Canada’s Island/Def Jam division.


1:45 - 2:45 PM

Press & Publicity: Launching with Impact

PANELISTS

• MODERATOR: Noreen Hamid, Creative Producer & PR Director

Noreen Hamid is a Publicity Director, Creative Producer, and Consultant with over 10 years of experience leading publicity campaigns for music artists, labels, international music award shows, TV series, films, and high-profile events. She also produces television series, music and entertainment news, and special events -- from award shows and red carpets, to album release showcases and art exhibits, and everything in between. After dedicated years with MuchMusic, MTV, E!, the Toronto International Film Festival, eTalk, and much more, Noreen started her own boutique company, utilizing her passion and combined experiences in Production, PR, and Strategy, and prioritizing work with artists from marginalized communities. An expert in Hip Hop, R&B, Afrobeats, and Pop music publicity, she works with several artists, labels, and projects internationally, including Megan Thee Stallion, Young Thug, Mary J. Blige, Gunna, Charlotte Cardin, TOBi, Ralph, Ruby Waters, IDMAN, RCA Records, Arista Records, 300 Entertainment, Fool’s Gold, the Oscar-nominated documentary The Cave, and as a consultant on several upcoming series and artists in development. Currently, Noreen's work touches Canada, the US, the UK, France, Ghana, Nigeria, India, parts of the Middle East, and beyond.

• Claire Julian, Director of Publicity, Nettwerk

Claire Julian serves as the Director of Publicity at Nettwerk Music Group, leveraging over 16 years of expertise in music publicity. In her current role, she spearheads global press campaigns for acclaimed artists such as SYML, Wild Rivers, Vacations, Miya Folick, Matt Maltese, and NEIL FRANCES. She also helps oversee Nettwerk’s international team of publicists.

Claire’s journey in the music industry began at MSO PR (now SRO) in Los Angeles, where she provided valuable assistance on campaigns for iconic artists, including David Bowie, Jane’s Addiction, Dolly Parton, Slash, and Ozzy Osbourne, and for renowned festival clients like Lollapalooza and Coachella. Driven by her passion, Claire relocated to Brooklyn during the peak of the 2010s blog era. There, she collaborated with emerging indie bands like Sea Wolf and Hockey at a boutique agency, overseeing tour press and national campaigns. She joined Nettwerk’s New York office in 2014 as a Tour Publicist, rising to the position of Director, now based in the Los Angeles office. 
• Nadia Ali, PR Founder and CEO

Nadia Ali PR Founder and CEO, Nadia Ali is a seasoned music and lifestyle publicist from New York who is dedicated to developing up and coming and established artists and talent via results-driven and carefully tailored press campaigns. Nadia most recently contributed her skills, creativity and passion for music to her work as Head of Publicity at Arista Records, working with artists such as Måneskin, Paul Russell, Mike Posner, Bishop Briggs, and UPSAHL. Previously holding prominent positions at MTV, Warner Records, Liz Rosenberg Media, and Island Records, Nadia has over 17 years of experience working on strategic press campaigns for established artists including Madonna, Cher, Fleetwood Mac, Stevie Nicks, Florence + The Machine, Tove Lo, and A R I Z O N A, high profile talent including Gigi Hadid and Eden Grinshpan, and nonprofit organizations such as Nvak Foundation/Nvak Collective and The Miraculous Love Kids.

• Carly Lewis, Journalist
Carly Lewis is a journalist living in Toronto. 

Her work has appeared at The New York Times, Vanity Fair, New York Magazine, Wired, Vulture, The Cut, The Atlantic, Elle, The Globe and Mail, The Walrus, The Guardian, Interview Magazine, The Fader, Pitchfork, the Toronto Star, Hazlitt, Spin, Maisonneuve and Maclean's. 

Her work has been recognized by the National Magazine Awards and Digital Publishing Awards."

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3 - 4 PM

Global Develoment Case Studies: USA

Developing an artist from local success to international readiness is no easy feat, especially in a global market that is constantly changing and growing. These professionals in artist development and talent booking will share case studies from their experience, highlighting how they helped grow artists to international recognition.

PRESENTED BY CIMA

PANELISTS

• MODERATOR: Helen Britton, CEO& President @ Six Shooter Inc.

As a business owner, artist manager and industry stakeholder for over twenty years, Helen Britton’s approach to the music business has focused on developing the infrastructure to support long-term, multi-dimensional artist careers. CEO and President of Six Shooter Inc., the management division of Six Shooter Records, Britton oversees a roster that includes Tanya Tagaq, July Talk, Whitehorse, The Dead South, Nyssa and William Prince. With perseverance and integrity, Britton has built Six Shooter Inc. as a destination for internationally renowned artists whose creative pursuits often extend beyond the standard role of musician or performer. In addition to her artist management work, Britton also represents Tanya Tagaq for live booking (Canada and Europe), speaking engagements, book publishing and as Executive Producer for an upcoming documentary and a stage production. On the CARAS/MusiCounts board, Britton is also engaged in developing and supporting initiatives towards a more equitable, accessible music business for all.

• Tao-Ming Lao, Founder @ Blue Crane Agency / Agent @ Paquin Artists

Tao-Ming Lau is the Founder/Agent at Blue Crane Agency (@bluecraneagency), a music booking agency seeking to prioritize women, artists of colour, and LGBTQ2S+ musicians in North America and abroad, and agent at Paquin Artists Agency. The Blue Crane roster was founded with and includes artists like Priyanka, Zaki Ibrahim, Shay Lia, Clerel, DJ NDN (Co-Founder of A Tribe Called Red), Vivek Shraya, BAMBII, and more. The agency has programmed festivals such as Pride Toronto and curated events for Nuit Blanche, Royal Ontario Museum, Toronto International Film Festival (TIFF), and more. Tao is a board director at Polaris Music Prize and Canadian Live Music Association and was chosen as a Rising Star in Toronto Life Magazine's 50 Most Influential Torontonians of 2018.  Previously, she was at Chicago-based touring agency Billions, Universal Music Canada, and got her start with Carly Rae Jepsen's management and label in Vancouver, on the traditional and unceded territories of the xʷməθkʷəy̓əm (Musqueam), Sḵwx̱wú7mesh (Squamish), and səlilwətaɬ (Tsleil-Waututh) Nations, where she was born and raised. Tao is a queer woman of colour seeking to open more doors and establish better infrastructure for underrepresented talent.

• Michelle Szeto, Vice President, Management Division @ Loft Entertainment

Michelle Szeto got her first taste of the entertainment industry at an early age in her hometown of Hong Kong, working in concert production for international superstars such as Oasis, Celine Dion, Boyz II Men, Sean Lennon and Prodigy. 

During her 17-year tenure at Paquin Entertainment Group, Michelle held various roles throughout the company, including publicity, tour marketing, and artist management. 

Today, in her role as Vice President, Management Division, at Loft Entertainment (in partnership with Paquin), Michelle personally manages award-winning artists and songwriter: Donovan Woods, Wild Rivers, Lindsay Ell, Devan and Babygirl.

• Elizabeth Phipps, Senior Director of Marketing @ AWAL
Elizabeth got her start in the industry in 2010 with her Toronto-based music blog, Torontette, which showcased Canadian bands, artist interviews, show reviews and more. In 2011 she pivoted her passion for music into a career, joining the Sony Music Canada marketing team. 2024 marks five years since she helped establish AWAL’s Toronto office and in this time, she has cultivated a dynamic roster of Canadian independent artists to present on the global stage vis-a-vis AWAL’s modern business model. Most notably in 2023, Elizabeth signed The Beaches to a worldwide AWAL Recordings deal, one that provides the band with all the resources of a global label, while allowing them to retain ownership and control of their music. 

The Afterparty

Thursday, March 7

Join us for an industry mixer event to celebrate International Women's Week, reconnect with old friends, and make new ones. 

Entry is included for all ticketholders.

Location TBA


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Location & Hotel

Event Location

Programming for both days will be held in Downtown Toronto at Allied Music Centre:

178 Victoria St,
Toronto, ON
M5B 1T7


Hotel

Traveling from out of town? WIMC has partnered with The Chelsea Hotel to offer a discounted block of rooms for your convenience. 

Book using this link 

Or use the Group Code:  WIM030524

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