Venus Fest Gets the Weather Station, Hannah Georgas, Luna Li, Melody McKiver for Summer Mentorship Program and Workshop Series

BY Exclaim! StaffPublished May 2, 2023

Organizers behind Toronto's Venus Fest have announced the return of their mentorship program, pairing developing artists and music arts workers with established mentors in their field .

Taking place from June 5 to July 28, the eight-week, Toronto-based program offers participants one-on-one online mentorship sessions with a professional musician or industry expert for an hour per week.

Artist mentors for 2023 include Tamara Lindeman of the Weather Station, Anishinaabe musician and composer Melody McKiver, Vancouver-based singer-songwriter Hannah Georgas and internet-powered polymath Luna Li.

On the industry side, Venus Fest has invited Koji Shiraki of Get Better Records; Manifesto festival managing director Tinesha Richards; music curator, event producer and Debaser founder Rachel Weldon; and Katrina Lopes of KL Management to take part in this year's program.

Venus Fest's mentorship program also includes two in-person, peer-to-peer sharing sessions, and a trio of in-person workshop sessions led by guest artists. This year's lineup includes a deep listening and sound gathering session led by composer Anne Bourne, a day reserved for songwriting with Lisa Patterson and Beau Cassidy, and a workshop on how to grow your audience both online and IRL led by CBC's Rina Espiritu.

Mentees receive an honorarium of $500 for their full participation, in addition to a care package designed to support wellbeing.

Mentorship program applications are open until May 17. Artists/arts workers who are QT/BIPOC that have lacked previous institutional support, and people who are accessible to the in-person sessions in Toronto are encouraged to apply, with complete application details via Venus Fest's official website.

Venus Fest's 2022 edition, the festival's sixth, was headlined by Georgas, Vagabon and Austra, with further performances by Mother Tongues, Kaia Kater, Russell Louder and more. Georgas and Kater were both participants in the fest's 2022 mentorship program.

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