Artist Pitch Sessions

Introducing pitch sessions to the Manitoba Showcase!

Pitch sessions provide an invaluable opportunity for artists to pitch their work (theatre, dance, music, etc…) to rural Manitoban presenters, developing new relationships, touring opportunities, and performance engagements. They are the first on-stage during our Late Night Networking & Open Mic events. This year, there will be two sessions approximately an hour-and-a-half long.

Here are some of the incredible pitch artists you’ll be seeing at this year’s Showcase!

The Broken Songs Band began with spoken word, bass, percussion and some sax; first, for the Winnipeg Symphony’s New Music Festival, then later orchestrated in the recording studio by Glenn Buhr. After several years going from project to project in several Canadian cities with a collection of different musicians (sometimes even full orchestra), the new Broken Songs Band is now a quartet: Sweatman on vocals and harmonica, Buhr on guitar, piano and vocals, along with guitarist/vocalist Allan Beardsell, and bassist Gilles Fournier.

Burns and Allen – A Loving Tribute
George Burns and Gracie Allen are reunited in this charming and hilarious throwback to the golden age of comedy. The classic banter and charming rapport of the comedy duo are brought to the stage for a delightful hour of nostalgic laughter. “Local actors Stephen Sim and Caity Curtis successfully pull off old-school laughs as the vintage vaudeville comedy team of George Burns and Gracie Allen, and in doing so remind  audiences what made them so beloved.” “Since Curtis’s comic persona closely resembles Gracie Allen, the two score points on a delicious Burns-and-Allen style bit, with Sim … skilfully playing the straight man.”

-Winnipeg Free Press

Experience the amazingly funny world of Comedy in Motion with Canada’s favorite juggler, Bob Cates. The show is much more than a stand up routine, and involves a great deal of physical skill which has taken years to hone. Some skills include advanced juggling, wild unicycling and balancing skills, Dance Dance Revolution while juggling, Chinese Yo Yo and cigar box manipulation, illusion, slapstick and frantic plate spinning reminiscent of the Ed Sullivan Show. He is one of few performers left in North America performing authentic plate spinning – his signature piece. Overall, the show is very fast paced, highly interactive and uses situational comedy and advanced skills to keep audience members of all ages on the edge of their seats right to the very end.


Led by their fearless front-woman Derina Harvey, this five-piece Celtic-rock group offers a fresh take on traditional tunes and intersperse that offering with their own original jigs and reels. Their infectious rhythmic undertow is layered with rock guitar, dizzying fiddle motifs, and topped by Derina’s powerful voice. These transplanted east-coasters have earned a reputation with their high-energy live show, leaving many an audience out-of-breath and hollering from the dance floor!

After a decade of establishing herself as an international singer, Monika Wall began writing her own songs responding to a call one night from three new songs insisting on being heard. The former classical singer brings the beauty and emotional intensity of her voice to the roots/blues album that is extraordinary and rare. Her award winning voice combined with Juno award winning producer Murray Pulver’s insight has created her sophomore album of originals, Let It Flow. A cross between southern rock, gospel/blues, R&B, folk and pop influences come together for a powerful and uplifting experience. Her music is a hybrid between the smoothness of a blues singer and the heart of a story teller.


Raine Hamilton has toured Canada extensively, driving, flying, and floating her way coast to coast. Raine’s new album, Night Sky, tips between the earthly and the otherworldly; it is anchored in relatable lived experience, while reaching into the space just beyond, thinning the veil between here and there, affording safe passage to the rough and beautiful places. Raine’s ethereal voice and lyrics are at the forefront of these powerful and relatable tunes, written both in English and in French. Alongside cello + double bass, and with Raine on violin or guitar, these songs have a moving string quartet feel with a cosmic reach.


The Wardens’ mountain music- blending folk, roots, and western styles – is a piece of Canadiana reflecting the pristine wilderness of the Rocky Mountains. With haunting three-part harmonies, Scott Ward (guitar), Bradley Bischoff (guitar), and Ray Schmidt (bass/mandolin) share stories drawing on 60+ years of fiercely protecting Canada’s most prized landscapes. The trio have performed at Folk Alliance International, Canmore Folk Fest, Alberta Showcase, and shared the stage with Blue Rodeo, Paul Brandt, Scenic Route to Alaska, and Tim Hus.


Vancouver harpist Janelle Nadeau has a way of drawing people in with her warm and engaging performance style. Drawing from a diverse repertoire of classical, Celtic, original, contemporary tunes and storytelling. Currently the acting principle harpist of the Vancouver Opera Orchestra, the Turning Point Ensemble and her own groups; Janelle maintains a rigorous performing schedule. She has taken the stage with everyone from Diana Krall and Kanye West to the Vancouver Symphony Orchestra and has performed on television and radio including on the CBS show, Supergirl.