André Alexis is an acclaimed novelist, playwright and librettist.
Born in Trinidad and raised in Canada, he has been the recipient of several significant
Canadian literary awards. His most recent novel, Fifteen Dogs, won the 2015 Scotiabank
Giller Prize and the Rogers Writers' Trust Fiction Prize. His debut novel, Childhood,
won the Books in Canada First Novel Award, the Trillium Book Award, and was shortlisted
for the Giller Prize and the Writers' Trust Fiction Prize. His other books include Pastoral
(nominated for the Rogers Writers' Trust Fiction Prize), Asylum, Beauty and Sadness, Ingrid
& the Wolf, Despair and Other Stories of Ottawa and Lambton, Kent and Other Vistas: A Play.
Buffy Sainte-Marie is an award-winning musician, songwriter, activist, educator, and visual
artist whose audacious attitude to life on and off the stage has inspired people around the world for over four
decades. She is known for her 1960s protest anthems (“Universal Soldier”), open-hearted love songs
(“Until It’s Time for You to Go”), incendiary powwow rock (“Starwalker”), and the Academy Award–winning song
“Up Where We Belong,” which Sainte-Marie co-wrote for the film An Officer and a Gentleman. One of the most
compelling artists of our time, she combines a high-energy stage presence with cerebral songs that tell
Deepa Mehta is an Academy Award-nominated transnational filmmaker whose films have played major
film festivals around the globe. Acclaimed as daring, fearless and provocative, her work challenges
traditions and stereotypes. She is best known for her Elements Trilogy of Fire, Earth, and Water,
which was nominated for the Academy Award for Best Foreign Language Film. Her other directing credits
include Bollywood/Hollywood, Heaven on Earth, Midnight’s Children, the epic adaptation of Salman Rushdie’s
three-time Booker Prize–winning novel, and her latest film, Beeba Boys, a tough, stylish gangster film.
Rebecca Belmore is a Montreal-based multidisciplinary artist and a member of the Lac Seul
First Nation at Frenchman's Head, Ontario. In 2013 she won the Governor General’s Award in Visual and Media
Arts. She gained international acclaim at the 2005 Venice Biennale’s Canadian Pavilion where she was the
first Indigenous woman to represent Canada. Belmore has exhibited and performed internationally and
nationally since 1987. She won the Jack and Doris Shadbolt Foundation’s prestigious VIVA Award 2004 and the
2009 Hnatyshyn Visual Arts Award. Her work is in the collections of the National Gallery of Canada, the Art
Gallery of Ontario, the Canada Council Art Bank, the Canadian Museum of Civilization and many others.
Matt Galloway is the host of Metro Morning on CBC Radio One, 99.1 FM, and the host of
Podcast Playlist on CBC Radio One. He has anchored CBC Radio's coverage of the 2008 Summer Olympics live
from Beijing, and the 2010 and 2014 Winter Olympics. In 2012, he was given the Excellence In Community
Service Award for addressing issues confronting diverse communities by the Intercultural Dialogue Institute,
and in 2013, received the Award for Diversity and Social Inclusion by the Tagore Anniversary Celebrations
Committee of Toronto. In 2015, Toronto Life Magazine named him one of Toronto's top 15 most influential
people, and he also received the African Canadian Achievement Award for excellence in Media.
Measha Brueggergosman is an award-winning Canadian soprano who is recognized around the world for her spectacular
voice and innate musicianship. She has shared the stage with the likes of Bill Gates and former U.S. President Bill
Clinton and given performances for Nelson Mandela, Kofi Annan and Queen Elizabeth II. At the 2010 Vancouver Olympic
and Paralympic Winter Games, 3.2 billion television viewers from across the globe witnessed her singing during the
Opening Ceremonies. Her musical range encompasses everything from gospel hymns and jazz standards to classical music.
She is also Canadian good-will ambassador for African Medical and Research Foundation (AMREF), Learning Through the
Arts and the World Wildlife Fun (WWF).