Manitoba Music is pleased to welcome two new people this month. Jacques Richer will be our new Francophone Music Program Coordinator and Ila Barker will be taking on the Indigenous Music Development Program Coordinator position while Shaneen Robinson-Desjarlais is on mat leave.
“We’re thrilled to welcome Jacques and Ila to the Manitoba Music team. Both are bringing with them real-world experience as music entrepreneurs as well as community connections and fresh perspectives. They’re enthusiastic advocates and ready to start helping music workers succeed through our Francophone and Indigenous music development programs," says Sean McManus, executive director of Manitoba Music.
Richer is no stranger to the local music scene. He’s been playing music locally for two decades, currently as a member of punk rock outfit, Screaming at Traffic, which was recently signed to UK indie label Little Rocket Records. He has spent time booking shows, DIY tours, and press for bands from all over North America. He’s also built up his marketing and admin chops, most recently at a law office.
“I'm thrilled to be joining the Manitoba Music team. I look forward to helping support and connect the Francophone music communities in Western Canada to new markets and opportunities using the skills I've learned as a DIY artist and marketing coordinator, and drawing on the resources of the vibrant Francophone music scene in Canada and abroad,” says Richer.
Barker has been a mainstay on the local scene, gaining attention as a singer/songwriter after winning the NCI Jam in 2011, charting on the Indigenous Music Countdown, and hitting festival stages and venues around Manitoba and across the country. Barker is a recent graduate of the University of Winnipeg with a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Conflict Resolution, and has gained a variety of experience in the creative industries in recent years.
“Meaningful engagement with the local music and Indigenous music community has been a long time love for me. As an artist who has built her career organically, I understand the need for support and have made it my personal mission to help other Indigenous artists develop DIY skills and gain autonomy over their own art and careers. I look forward to working with and learning from all of the incredible folks in our community,” says Barker.
Richer can be reached at email@example.com, 204.975.1299.
Barker can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org, 204.942.8650.