performing August 27-30, 2015, throughout the
Downtown Yonge Neighbourhood
Toronto, August 4, 2015 – Organizers of the 2015Toronto International BuskerFest for Epilepsy, presented by Scotiabank and in partnership with the Downtown Yonge Business Improvement Area (BIA), are pleased to announce a rich line-up ofoutstanding musical acts among the more than 170 performers from Canada and around the world performing August 27-30, in theDowntown Yonge Neighbourhood.
Toronto BuskerFest includes a wide array of street performers, from acrobats and magicians to comedians, fire-manipulators, contortionists and musicians! Among the 170 talented acts at this year’s festival are more than a dozen musical acts representing a variety of styles – from soothing acoustic guitar to old-time jazz, from rock ‘n’ roll to beatboxing, and more!
To watch a video of each musical act listed below, click on their name.
Acoustic Guitar Virtuosos
Daniel Champagne (Australia) – Australia’s acoustic guitar master returns to Toronto BuskerFest with his distinctive percussive style and smooth voice.
Andrew Lopatin (GTA) – The big instrumental guitarist from the little country-town of Stouffville, Ontario, Andrew Lopatin enthrals audiences with his lively guitar playing and unique rhythms. Toronto BuskerFest debut!
Old-Style Jazz & Blues
The Boxcar Boys (Toronto) – Delivering a gumbo of original old-style jazz, folk, klezmer and country, this group of six inimitable musicians on clarinet, sousaphone, fiddle, trombone, accordion and washboard were nominated for Instrumental Group of the Year at the 2013 Canadian Folk Music Awards.
Mr. B’s Joybox Express (U.S.) – Mr. B’s Joybox Express is a 385-lb. piano on a bicycle led by renowned blues and boogie woogie pianist Mr. B. Powered by three riders, Joybox completed a 1,840-mile ride along the entire length of the Mississippi River in 2014.
Scott Jackson (Toronto) – Former Canadian Beatbox Champion and a finalist on Canada’s Got Talent, this master human beatbox returns to delight audiences with his incredible vocal talent.
Sparx(Toronto) – This 18-year-old first fell in love with beatboxing when she saw Scott Jackson performing at BuskerFest. Four years later, she is competing on a world stage and just took 2nd place for Female Beatboxer of the Year at the World Beatbox Championship in Berlin. She will be joining Scott Jackson for one show daily in the Family Fun Zone as well as teaching workshops daily in the Scotiabank Tent.Toronto BuskerFest debut!
Pop/Rock/Jazz Instrumental Covers
Das Fagott Mannschaft (Toronto) – Covering great tunes from yesterday and today, this quartet of classically trained, yet slightly unhinged bassoonists (whose name is German for “the bassoon team”) cannot be contained by your typical symphony orchestra.Toronto BuskerFest debut!
Hogtown Sound (Toronto) – Hogtown Sound is an exciting busking band of young musicians from Toronto who perform brass band-style instrumental covers of pop, rock, disco, jazz and more. They started busking as a means to pay for their music school tuitions and can be found playing your favourite hits all around the streets of Toronto.
Turbo Street Funk (Toronto) – Discovered on the streets of Toronto in 2012 by Canadian jazz legend Richard Underhill, Turbo Street Funk has grown from a street savvy busking crew to a festival favourite. Following the traditions of classic New Orleans horn bands, they draw from music styles ranging from R&B, disco, jazz, funk, rock, Colombian porro, classical music and electronica.
Euphonia (Toronto) – Toronto’s hippest chamber orchestra makes classical music more accessible through personality, passion, creativity and technology. A huge hit when they appeared at Toronto BuskerFest for the first time last year, Euphonia invites audience members to “Conduct Us” and have their moment as the Maestro!
Country, Celtic & Folk
Bearded Gypsy Band (Australia) – These masterful musicians from Australia play an eclectic mix of original tunes with folk, rock, jazz, world and gypsy influences.
Heather Chappell and Vince Peets (Toronto) – These two Toronto-based singer-songwriters have been partners in music and life for over a decade, playing a mix of original folk/roots songs and lively traditional jigs on a plethora of pretty penny whistles, a romping red guitar and a purple accordion named Violet. Heather and Vince both live with epilepsy.
Screeched Inn (Toronto) – This three-piece acoustic trio brings East Coast Celtic flavour to Toronto with their rich harmonies.
MaracaTALL (Toronto) – A high energy, high impact stilt-drumming troupe that can be seen and heard over 100 metres away! With colourful costumes, choreography adapted from folkloric traditions and Maracatu drums, MaracaTALL raises Afro-Brazilian rhythms to new heights!
OKA(Australia) – The OKA boys return to Toronto BuskerFest with their earthy, feel-good sound: a mash-up of dance and down tempo electro beats marinated in the Dreamtime didgeridoo spirit of Australian Indigenous culture.
Samba Squad (Toronto) – Samba Squad follows the path of the drum from Brazil to Toronto. Inspired by the Escola de Sambas of Rio de Janeiro, the Afro Blocos of Salvador Bahia and the Maracatu nations, the beats and the grooves of Samba Squad come together in a seething cauldron of sound.
Toronto BuskerFest is teaming up with Monarchs Pub in the Chelsea Hotel to present BuskerFest After-parties, with special evening performances by festival musicians:
Thursday, August 27 @ 8:00 p.m. – Daniel Champagne
Friday, August 28 @ 9:00 p.m. – Turbo Street Funk
Saturday, August 29 @ 9:00 p.m. – Hogtown Sound
Chelsea Hotel, 33 Gerrard Street West, Toronto
Epilepsy Toronto is organizing the Purple Walk for Epilepsy on the final day of BuskerFest (Sunday, August 30 @ 10 a.m.). Participants will meet as a group in the parking lot of Epilepsy Toronto to enjoy a pancake breakfast before embarking on the city’s inaugural epilepsy walk ending at Yonge-Dundas Square, where newchoir, Toronto’s premiere rock choir featuring 50-70 singers at a time, will perform a benefit concert on the Scotiabank Stage!
16th Annual Toronto International BuskerFest for Epilepsy
presented by Scotiabank
Thursday, August 27 – Sunday, August 30, 2015
throughout the Downtown Yonge Neighbourhood:
Yonge Street all the way from Queen to College and surrounding areas (including Yonge-Dundas Square).
Thursday, noon – 11 p.m.; Friday, noon – 11 p.m.;
Saturday, 11 a.m. – 11 p.m.; Sunday, 11 a.m. – 8 p.m.
Donate at the gate to Epilepsy Toronto
For information, visit: www.torontobuskerfest.com
Instagram & Twitter: @BuskerFestTO #BuskerFestTO #DonateAtTheGate
About Toronto International BuskerFest for Epilepsy
Since its inception in 2000, Toronto International BuskerFest for Epilepsy has featured hundreds of the best street performers from around the world, hosted millions of amazed spectators and helped raise much-needed funds for Epilepsy Toronto. BuskerFest is the largest street performers’ festival in North America and is the largest Epilepsy awareness-raising event in the world.