JAZZ.FM91 announces the second edition of its Discover Women in Jazz program

JAZZ.FM91 in Toronto is proud to announce the second season of Discover  Women in Jazz. In partnership with the Pat and Tony Adams Freedom Fund for the Arts, this outreach program promotes, champions and inspires women’s contributions to jazz as musicians, writers and bandleaders.

The second edition again features five musicians from the Greater Toronto Area selected by a panel that includes Colleen Allen, Céline Peterson, Dione Taylor, Aline Homzy and Discover Women in Jazz alumnus Reknee Harrett.

Through this program, JAZZ.FM91 will offer these talented women support, space, funding and marketing to foster their careers. The concerts in this series will be broadcast live every Thursday from 7 to 8 p.m. ET between Aug. 4 and Sept. 1, 2022.

An exciting addition to this year’s program is the inclusion of Jazzology interviews, sponsored by the RBC Emerging Artists Project. Taking place every Wednesday in August, these unique Jazzology episodes will showcase each participant in conversation with Jazzology host Heather Bambrick in the leadup to their live performance.


Marie Goudy

Trumpeter and vocalist Marie Goudy started her professional career at the age of 16. Marie has since played with many notable musicians — including on three Juno-nominated albums — came second in the 2020 Toronto Star Readers’ Choice Awards for Best Local Musician or Band, and formed a quickly rising 12tet that released the album The Bitter Suite, reaching No. 3 on the national jazz charts in 2018.

Ashley Kurkjian

Ashley Kurkjian is an accredited music therapist, a registered psychotherapist

(qualifying) and a freelance musician in Toronto. Ashley currently leads and composes for her seven-piece chamber fusion band Different Era, who released their self-titled EP in October, 2016. Ashley can also be heard performing around the GTA with bands GRACE and Human Magic. Ashley has also had the pleasure of playing the Halifax Jazz Festival with Chelsea McBride’s Socialist Night School, the Beaches International Jazz Festival and more with GRACE and The Achromatics, and the Toronto Undergraduate Jazz Festival and the Korean Harvest Festival with Different Era.

Debi Botos

From an early age, Debi Botos has cultivated an interest in Hungarian Gypsy music, from where she was born. Now 26, as a self-taught musician, Debi continues to explore and experiment with the sounds of the legendary Django Reinhardt. Through gigging around the Toronto circuit, playing festivals and concert halls in the U.S. and growing up in a very musical Botos family, she has found a sound that is both modern and an homage to the greats. She studied music at Humber College and has collaborated with some of the contemporary giants of the genre, including Samson Schmitt, Ludovic Beier and Stephane Wrembel.

Alexa Belgrave

Alexa Belgrave is a pianist, musical director and community member based in Toronto with a bachelor of music in jazz piano from the University of Toronto. With a background in classical studies, an interest in composition and an interactive and rhythmic ‘comping style, Alexa has worked with a variety of musical acts such as TUSH, the Queer Songbook Orchestra, Andrew Downing and Shakura S’Aida, and with theatre companies including the Obsidian Playwright Unit, the Musical Stage Company, Nightwood Theatre and more. In 2019, she was awarded a TD Discovery Series grant for her R&B/jazz collective Moodset. She is currently teaching musical theatre performance at Sheridan College and piano at the Annex Academy of Music and more.

Nicky Schrire

Vocalist and composer Nicky Schrire’s work has been likened to Joni Mitchell and Esperanza Spalding. Since 2012, Nicky has released Freedom Flight (2012), Space & Time (2013) and will be releasing her new album Nowhere Girl this year. “Schrire is, by any standard, a remarkable talent … Her voice is a bell, a curve of pliant sound, a personality, a vessel for great songs.” – Will Layman, PopMatters.