Photo Credit: Denise Truscello – co-founder of Wire Image Singer/Song-Writer, Agent, and ELAN Member: Kathryn Berry

What attracted you to your artistic discipline?

Madonna! My mother died of brain cancer and through research and then working with the NGO, International Brain Research Organization (IBRO), I learned the many benefits of music and learning an instrument. In fact, the arts in general are an avenue to longevity and improved quality of life.

Where do you find your inspiration?

I find inspiration in my family, the books I read, and everyday struggles, the arts or just an unexpected night out.

Do you have any practical advice for fellow professional artists?

Invest in your art just as you would in any education, give it time and know that failure is just another word for “you are not ready yet” but most important do it because you love it.

What projects are you currently working on/just finished working on?

I’m currently working on my next album, Misdemeanors. The song, So You’re Goin’ to California, is the lead single off this album, slated for release in early 2019. I also manage the Mexican artist Shiadanni and we are working on some pretty exciting things for her new album. It is really rewarding to help another artist realize their vision. It is both inspiring and challenging.

Any last notes you would like to share with the public?

Yes, check out the new single, So You’re Goin’ the California, on Spotify and Youtube.

If you like what you hear, please follow me and spread the word. Success is determined by the people you touch. They are the ones who will carry you forward.

Discover more!

Ways to listen to Kathryn Berry’s music:

Kathryn on iTunes
Webpage (official website)

Connect with Kathryn Berry through social media:


Follow us on our new Instagram account to see more of Kathryn Berry’s life as a singer-songwriter (@kathrynberryca)

Photo provided by QCGN (Quebec Community Groups Network)

Today, on April 23, 2018, the Secretariat for Relations with English-speaking Quebecers (SRESQ) announced $950,000 in funding for five community-based projects. The recipients are the English Language Arts Network (ELAN), the Quebec Community Groups Network (QCGN), Quebec English-speaking Communities Research Network (QUESCREN), Council for Anglophone Magdalen Islanders, and Eastern Townships Resource Centre (ETRC).

Kathleen Weil, Minister responsible for Access to Information and the Reform of Democratic Institutions and Minister responsible for Relations with English-Speaking Quebecers, announced that the funding will increase the amount of government representation and support provided to English-speaking communities across the province.

ELAN has received $230,000 for a two-year project to ‘establish long-term arts education collaborations.’ Based on ELAN’s ACE (Arts, Communities and Education) initiative, this new funding will greatly increase collaborations between artists and educators for the benefit of students. 10 to 15 schools and communities will receive assistance for arts-based projects that will develop transferable skills and creative thinking.

Cultural and Education are natural partners, and both are under provincial jurisdiction, however bureaucratic structures have made it difficult in the past for artists and educators to collaborate. This new funding and partnerships demonstrates that the new Anglo Secretariat is fulfilling its mandate of closer collaboration between government ministries and Quebec’s English-speaking communities.


English-Language Arts Network

English-Language Arts Network ACE Initiative

School of Community and Public Affairs

Quebec English-speaking Communities Research Network

The Secretariat for relations with English-speaking Quebecers

Council for Anglophone Magdalen Islanders

Quebec Community Groups Network

Eastern Townships Resource Centre







Julien Valmary & Guy Rodgers
Julien and Guy also showed us that style, just like art, is a universal language.

Photos by: Amy Macdonald


Le Conseil des arts de Montréal (CAM) recently partnered with ELAN to present an information session in English about its programs and services.

Julien Valmary, CAM’s Management Support and Strategic Initiatives Director, led about 15 attendees through a presentation of CAM’s history, its programs, and its current strategic directions: Inclusiveness, Outreach, and Communication.

Here are 3 facts you might not have known about CAM:

  1. You can apply in English. Even though CAM’s application portal, ORORA, is currently available in French only, you are welcome to write your application and send support materials in English. (ELAN did, and we got the grant!)
  2. CAM has studios for rent. Artists can book time in dance, music, and multidisciplinary studios in the beautiful Maison du CAM right across Parc Lafontaine. Click here for more info.
  3. CAM offers a consulting service for culturally diverse artists. If you’re seeking professional development advice or guidance for your career, get in touch with Iulia-Anamaria Salagor:

The federal Ministry of Canadian Heritage is responsible for funding 12 crown corporations, including Canada Council, Téléfilm, the National Film Board, and CBC. The fund that supports Official Language communities is less visible but extremely important for minority language communities.  A significant portion of ELAN’s funding comes from this source, which has also funded some of our largest projects such as Arts Alive! Québec.

On March 28 in Ottawa, Minister Mélanie Joly and Prime Minister Trudeau unveiled the 2018/19 Action Plan for Official Languages. The new Action Plan received a 20% increase in funding, which was an encouraging demonstration of support for minority language communities across the country. Some of the highlights include:

  • $57.35 million to increase support for organizations working in community development, culture, and second language learning;
  •  $67.3 million in new funding (over 5 years) for the construction of cultural and educational infrastructure;
  • $11.2 million to double the Community Cultural Action Fund, for a total investment of $21.2 million over 5 years;
  • $10 million for a new Community Media Strategic Fund.



Quebec Budget 2018/19

The Quebec budget on March 27 was full of election year goodies. After years of austerity and cuts it was certainly a good new budget for artists and cultural workers. Total investment in the Ministry of Culture and Communication will rise to $778 million in 2019/19, an 11% increase. This the largest new investment in culture in 20 years.

Media and culture

  • $113 million on youth and culture, including $35 million for cultural field trips for school daycare students;
  • $168.9 million in new funding for arts funding organizations and cultural tax credits, including $100 million in new funding to be divided between CALQ and SODEC, and $2.5 million to extend a tax credit for a first major cultural gift (of $5,000 to $25,000) from Jan. 1, 2018 to Dec. 31, 2022;
  • Increasing, from $15.5 million a year to $19.5 million, the contribution to the Quebec Cultural Heritage Fund;
  • $5 million to compensate museums that offer one free Sunday a month;
  • $5 million for large-scale cultural events in Quebec City;
  • $40 million for “various initiatives” that support the creation of digital cultural works;
  • $64.7 million for a tax credit to support digital transformation of print media;
  • $11.6 million to make digital video productions eligible for the film and television tax credit.

Anglo Secretariat

Last year, the Couillard government created a new Anglo Secretariat, which established Arts and Culture as a community priority.  The 2018/19 budget provided the Anglo Secretariat with a $24.5 million budget and several projects involving arts and education are waiting to receive financial support.


Guy Rodgers

Executive Director

Fuat Tuaç – Jazz vocalist —- Photo credit: Peter Graham


Finding Connection in the Montreal Jazz Scene
By: Erika Serodio

Fuat Tuaç was waiting at the bar when I arrived at Café Parvis. “I usually go to places like this,” he tells me a few minutes later. He motions around the room as if his hands could fill the space with sound. He tells me that he often enquires with staff members at the local eateries he visits, “Is there live music on any night? Would you like some? Would you like jazz? Wouldn’t it be nice? And I convince them.

Fuat’s entrepreneurial spirit comes as no surprise. Before pursuing jazz full-time, he worked as a corporate lawyer in Turkey. Fuat recognizes both the importance and the difficulty of marketing yourself as a musician in Montreal. “That’s where most of the musicians fail actually, even myself,” he explains. “You called the bar one time, twice, three times. You stop by – they don’t have time. Rejection, rejection, rejection. We have to deal with that. And sometimes, I see frustration in my colleagues, which is something I constantly battle as well because the market is not so big.”

And yet, despite these challenges, Fuat says “it’s the Montreal live music scene that I find so inspiring.” When asked to describe his inspirations, Fuat returned to the people around him: “I must say most of my colleagues are my inspiration. Because we’re so lucky. Any given day we can go out. And just like in New York, you can go to a live venue – it doesn’t need to be jazz… There’s just amazing music.”

Fuat is a jazz vocalist who enjoys singing many different styles of jazz. “I think that as a musician, and as a person as well, you have to be open. You cannot say I can’t do that, because that kills your inspiration.” He understands that jazz music is not approachable for everyone, but he’s thinking about ways that he can incorporate new sounds into his music. “You can go eclectic… Why not mix the genres of music and make something new, fresh?” Fuat has been thinking about how “even the noise of the city sounds like hip-hop.” At the moment, he’s considering shaping his story as an immigrant into urban poetry and to use instrumentals that combine hip-hop, jazz, and eastern influences. On his upcoming album, he’s looking to collaborate with other immigrants and musicians who have mastered Middle Eastern instruments.

Fuat has never been a fan of what he calls “the elite hashtag on jazz.” He discovered jazz later in his life, a theme he explores on his first album, Late Bloomer. The improvisational aspect of jazz intrigued Fuat, who appreciates the ability to reinvent a song each time he is on stage. The encouragement that he received from his teachers and the welcoming disposition of the local jazz community also drew him in.

Fuat’s passion for jazz is deeply entwined with his desire to bring people together. When he attends a dinner or a house party, he says “I always ask – Can I bring a friend?” Sometimes they say no, but Fuat is not defeated by this. “In our culture, in Turkish culture, you mix your friends. Whereas I realize here in Montreal people seem to not blend so much.” But he continues to hold this Turkish value close, nourishing it with his music. “I find it so fascinating and inspiring, actually. The interaction. And I think that there must be more interactions between the immigrants and the Quebecois living here.” Fuat feels that there are open-minded people in Quebec, “especially in the music world… People are curious about different cultures.” Through his music, Fuat aims to encourage people to be open to new sounds and to be curious about other cultures – music as a catalyst for change.

As Fuat begins work on his next album, he turns to themes that have deeply influenced his life. “Immigration, living in Montreal, the realities, I’d like to derive from the realities of being an immigrant and the reality of being a real Quebecois.” When asked about including political and social themes like immigration and belonging into his music, Fuat’s response is candid: “I guess when you’re an immigrant you have no choice… you have to.”

Discover more!

Fuat Tuaç’s webpage

Follow us on our new Instagram account to see more of Fuat Tuaç’s (#fuattuac) life as a jazz musician and performer!

A new photo or video will become available everyday from April 3 – April 10, 2018.



  • Savvy Sessions presents Touring and Showcasing with Mariam Assaf at the MAI. This workshop is free but registration is mandatory –  APRIL 15, 1 PM – 4 PM.  Click here to learn more. 
  • Join Diane Roberts, David Smuggler, and Gerry Trentham to explore the transformation of voice and movement techniques into essential Legacy Voice. Develop skill using rhythm, balance, breath, spontaneity, and resonance. This 3-day workshop is from APRIL 20 – APRIL 22, 10 AM – 5 PM. Hosted by Concordia University’s Theatre Department, MB Building – 1450 Guy Street. Registration deadline: APRIL 13. Click here to learn more.

Multidisciplinary / General

  • Savvy Sessions presents Sound Recording for Voice Artists (Music / Theatre) with Denis Martin at Studio Lamajeure. This workshop is free but registration is mandatory – APRIL 8, 1 PM – 5 PM. Click here to learn more.
  • YES Montreal presents Jump-Start Your Art & Financing Options on APRIL 16, 1:30 PM – 3:30 PM – learn how to live off your art. Click here to learn more.
  • YES Montreal presents Post, Tweet, Pin or Tag?: Choosing the Right Social Media Platform on APRIL 18, 6:30 PM – 8:30 PM – learn what social media platforms are the best for your business/artistic ventures and how to best employ them. Click here to learn more.
  • Savvy Sessions presents Build Your Own Website with June Park at Grovehall, Huntingdon, QC. This workshop is free but registration is mandatory – APRIL 22, 10 AM – 1 PM. Click here to learn more. 
  • Savvy Sessions presents Grant Writing Essentials with June Park at Grovehall, Huntingdon, QC. This workshop is free but registration is mandatory – APRIL 22, 2 PM – 5 PM. Click here to learn more.


  • Puppetry Creation in Community Course, Tuesdays from APRIL 10 – MAY 22; 2 PM – 5 PM at Too Close to the Sun Theatre Studio (5445 de Gaspe, suite 408). $85.00 per person for all 7 sessions (3 hrs each). $12.00 per session for drop ins. This puppetry creation course will explore various styles of puppetry — creating original pieces in collaboration with participants for performance. Open to all ages and experience levels. Click here to learn more.
  • Savvy Sessions presents Translation Essentials Part 1 & 2 with Alexis Diamond. Venue TBA. Please note that participants must attend part 1 and part 2 of this workshop. This workshop is free but registration is mandatory – APRIL 11, 5 PM – 7 PM & APRIL 14, 1 PM – 5 PM. Click here to learn more.
  • Marketing Yourself with Amy Blackmore on APRIL 14, 3 PM – 5 PM – learn how to better market yourself. Topics include brand crafting, online presence, in-person networking tips, resume/cover letter writing for the arts, interview skills, and more. This workshop is pay-what-you-can. MainLine MiniMain Studio – 3997 St-Laurent. Space is limited. Click here to reserve your spot. 
  • Savvy Sessions presents Autofiction: Follow the Yellow Brick Road with Joanna Nutter at Freestanding Room. This workshop is free but registration is mandatory – APRIL 28, 1 PM – 5 PM. Click here to learn more. 

Visual Arts

  • Collography (APRIL 7, 8 – 9:30 AM – 3:30 PM. $220) / Monotype – no experience required (APRIL 11 or 14 – 9:30 AM – 2:30 PM. $80) workshops available in Hudson – Studio Sorge, 1626 chemin Hudon, Dunham – QC. Email or call 450 295-2567 (leave your email).

Literary / Writing

  • AELAQ presents A Book Talk and Workshop: Elements of Indigenous Style on APRIL 13, 12 PM  – 2 PM at Atwater Library Auditorium, 1200 Ave Atwater. Gregory Youngin will take take participant through the topic of his new book, Elements of Indigenous Style: A Guide for Writing By and About Indigenous People, which offers guidance on producing material that employs Indigenous-based editorial practices and concerns, and that reflects Indigenous people and their voices in an appropriate and respectful manner. Click here to learn more.