Women in the Studio National Accelerator 2021: Meet our Producers

Ava Kay – Toronto, ON

Ava Kay is a Canadian, singer-songwriter and composer whose accomplishments as a writer include gold records and domestic and international radio success. Her pop songwriting career has produced songs that have accumulated over 30 million streams and counting across streaming platforms. The Toronto born and raised songstress has collaborated with Grammy award-winning producer Afrojack, “Britain’s Got Talent/Eurovision” finalist Ryan O’Shaughnessy and multi-platinum artists Raghav, ATB and Tyler Shaw.

Ava’s work as a songwriter and composer has also garnered multiple award nominations. Her TV credits include projects for Disney, CBC, The Family Channel and Hallmark. Her film credits range from original compositions to film scores for award-winning films such as American Mary, Dr. Cabbie, The Door & Prom Night amongst others.

Her debut solo single “Wild Again” has received widespread critical acclaim from dozens of publications worldwide.  “Earmilk” describes her as a “Cinematic Pop Angel”, while  “Popdust” claims emphatically,  “If you don’t already know this artist, then get to know Ava Kay now”.

Ava is currently composing a new feature movie Hysteria set to be released late 2021.  She is an alumni of the Canadian Film Centre Slaight Music Residency and holds a degree in Psychology.

DJ Killa-Jewel – Montreal, QC

A 25-year veteran of the underground hip hop scene and turntablist community, DJ Killa-Jewel has rocked the decks across Canada, the U.S., Europe, Asia and Australia at some of the most prestigious clubs, concerts and festivals. Trained in classical music, she spent years fusing hip hop with the theatre milieu by composing “turntable music” live for theatrical productions, and touring extensively with award-winning Canadian actor and director Robert Lepage on his highly acclaimed productions “Zulu Time” (co-produced by Peter Gabriel) and “The Buskers Opera”. She has also scored for television and video games, in her most recent collaboration with Bioware on their acclaimed title Dragon Age, where she produced and remixed Inon Zur’s theme “I Am The One”, and composed the music for CBC television’s hit show for kids, “Surprise! It’s Edible, Incredible”. Her debut EP, Reckless, is a project that brings the classic, boom bap hip hop era with the dry, bassy 808 rhythms and sounds of mainstream cloud rap. Collaborations with Nate Husser, Wasiu, Ras Kass and Sereni-T, along with the use of her own vocals on the record further solidify her status as both a producer and performing artist.

Elisa Pangsaeng – Vancouver, BC

Elisa Pangsaeng is a producer, writer, mixer, recording and mastering engineer. She cut her teeth as a runner at Van Howes and Hipposonic studios before moving on to spend the better part of a decade as a senior engineer at Monarch Studios in Vancouver, BC. Elisa joined CPS Mastering in 2018 and has quickly gained momentum in the mastering world, while continuing to produce records freelance. Select credits include Lights, Yukon Blonde, Kinnie Starr, Said the Whale, GRAE, STACEY, and LOLO.

Lana Winterhalt – Winnipeg, MB

Lana Winterhalt is a singer-songwriter, producer and artist based in Winnipeg. She has released five projects in the past five years and her catalogue covers a wide range of genres including: acoustic ballads, neoclassical instrumentals, indie rock, electro pop, and new age. On her EP Hold On To Me, Winterhalt experiments with minimalist lyrics over synthesized backdrops. On It Was Pouring Rain Then Just Like That The Sun Was Shining,  she gives a nod to the neo-classical resurgence sparked by fellow Canadian artists Alexandra Stréliski and Jean-Michel Blais. From heartbreak to pure bliss, and hushed ambience to exploding soundscapes, Lana Winterhalt’s artistry and production sink deep into your soul and intend to stay there. Winterhalt is co-founder of Good + Plenty WPG, a brand new arts and music collective with the main goal of promoting underrepresented artists in Winnipeg. G+P seeks to shake up the boys club, make ALL shows and venues accessible, and provide opportunities and resources for underrepresented artists to be heard, uplifted and celebrated.

Mour – Toronto, ON

Mour is a Toronto-based dark pop/hip-hop producer. Originally from Oshawa, Ontario, Mour started working at large concert venues in downtown Toronto in her late teens. Though she was always drawn to music in her youth, the late night, backstage, venue life heavily influenced how she saw the music world, broadening both the genres she was listening to and the people she was meeting every day.

As Toronto’s music scene became more influenced by dark hip hop, so did Mour. Delving into music production six years ago, Mour started finding her dark pop sound and making her name known in the last year, with the guidance of respected community members such as Dan “5piece” Lombardi and Anthony “Cajflow” Johnson. In the last year, she’s released two self-produced albums, one with a feature from EverythingOShauN, and a single with local artist and hometown friend J-Will. Mour has been recognized by members of the Toronto music community as an uplifting, talented producer, and she is proud to be standing out as an LGBT female in a male-dominated space.

OBUXUM – Toronto, ON

OBUXUM is a Toronto based Somali-Canadian producer and beat maker, whose lush and characteristic sound celebrates story telling. She has made her presence known with notable festival performances at Wavelength Festival, Kazoo! Fest, Electric Eclectics, and Venus Fest. NOW Magazine included OBUXUM in their list of Toronto electronic musicians to watch in 2018.

Sadé Awele – Vancouver, BC

Sadé Awele is a Nigerian-born singer who is inspired by her Yoruba and Ibo heritage, which you experience in her music, one that ranges from Afrosoul to conscious alternative R&B, neo-soul and contemporary R&B. Her music is certainly in a category of its own. 

Her most recent work includes a series of singles with accompanying music videos available on all music platforms, Youtube & IGTV. Her most anticipated EP project Time Love Journey, was released in the fall of 2020 and has gained over 200,000 streams since its release. There is so much more to come from her unique sound. Described by Exclaim! Media as an artist that needs to be heard in 2020, Sadé Awele is the Afro-infused R&B artist we have been waiting for.

Having won African Fashion & Arts Award’s Female artist of the year award, she has captivated spaces with her timeless lyrics and jazzy tone. She writes and performs any genre she likes without setting any boundary, relying on her emotions and intuitions. Thanks to her versatility, Awele’s creations range from Afrobeats, to Afrosoul, Electro R&B, Alt R&B, and R&B.

Her boldfaced and enticing sound often gets personal to listeners, exposing them to their own emotions. Influenced by some of the greatest pop stars such as Nao, Erykah Badu, Jamila Woods, HER, Beyoncé, Awele takes her influences and adds her own personal touch unique to most catalogues, and defying any rigid classification of genres.

Sarah MacDougall – London, ON

Sarah MacDougall is a multiple award-winning artist, songwriter, composer and producer. She has released four albums, and over the last ten years has toured extensively across North America and Europe. Sarah’s latest album All the Hours I Have Left To Tell You Anything won two Indie Awards, and was nominated for two Western Canadian Music Awards, and a Canadian Folk Music Award. Previous albums have earned her two Western Canadian Music Awards and several more nominations. Sarah recently signed with Canadian publisher Arts&Crafts as a songwriter and producer. With a background in audio engineering from Banff and Berklee College of Music, and a degree in music composition from Simon Fraser University, Sarah is a versatile talent in the studio. She is currently working on her next album, as well as producing and composing for, and collaborating with other artists. Sarah often collaborates with storyteller and writer Ivan Coyote, and they have created several theatre shows together (one of which Sarah composed and scored for a six- piece chamber ensemble). Sarah has co-written songs with Bill Lefler, Nygel Asselin, Rich Jaques, Stacey, Old Man Saxon, Marcus Paquin, Ben Kunder, Hill Kourkoutis, Matt Epp, Begonia, Thom D’Darcy, and more. She is currently producing an album for Toronto artist Andrea Ramolo in her studio The Dreamship.

An engaging performer, Sarah has been selected to play international festivals such as Iceland Airwaves, Edmonton Folk Festival, Reeperbahn, and has shared the stage with artists such as Tallest Man on Earth, Buffy St. Marie, Passenger, and many more.

Sierra Noble – Winnipeg, MB

Sierra Noble is a well-known singer, songwriter, fiddle player, and producer from Winnipeg, Canada. She started touring and releasing music as a teenager and has performed around the world including as an opening act for Paul McCartney, Bon Jovi, and Johnny Reid, and as a featured performer in the Opening Ceremony of the 2010 Winter Olympics. Throughout her music career, Noble’s had the honour to work with and learn from some of the best producers and engineers in the industry including Russ Titelman, Rusty Matyas, Chad Carlson, and Brent Maher on both her own projects and others. Her original music has been featured in TV shows such as “One Tree Hill”, “Switched at Birth”, and “Parenthood”, and in films such as CBC’s Humboldt: The New Season, 40 Weeks The Movie, and Fostering Hope.

Steph Copeland – Toronto, ON

With beginnings as a singer-songwriter and electronic music producer, Steph Copeland’s foray into screen composing began in 2012 with the indie horror film Antisocial. She has since scored over 40 features, series and commercials (“Vicious Fun”, “The Oakroom”, CityTV’s “The Wedding Planners”, NBA Canada.)   In 2018, Copeland produced and conducted all-female orchestral ensembles in performances opening the SOCAN Awards and TIFF Gala. Keeping true to her songwriting roots, Steph continues to produce and release albums and songs which have seen placements in series such as Netflix’s “Tiny Pretty Things”, “L.A.’s Finest”, “UnREAL”, animated series “Mysticons” and more.