MEET THE BOARD
A lifelong supporter of the arts in Alberta, Stephanie has held leadership positions in multiple arts organizations in Calgary throughout her career. She served in fundraising and executive leadership positions at National Music Centre for seven years, most notably as Chief of Staff and Senior Director, Administration where she led operations in visitor experience, business development, human resources, and information technology. Stephanie is currently Chief of Staff at Glenbow Museum, leading Glenbow’s people and culture portfolio and acting as strategic partner to the President & CEO within the senior leadership team. Prior to Glenbow and National Music Centre, Stephanie worked in management at HMV record stores for close to a decade. Stephanie is a graduate of MacEwan University’s Arts & Cultural Management program and is an active volunteer within the music community in Calgary.
Candace was born and raised in Edmonton, graduating from the Advertising & Public Relations Program at GMCC. She worked through College as a Server at The Sidetrack Café where her passion for live music was seeded. She became the Public Relations Director for the Edmonton YMCA, where she learned a lot about working with non-profit organizations. Through this experience, she added “maximum utilization of available resources” to her credo. Candace worked in the Radio Industry for 15 years in promotions, advertising, marketing, event planning and execution. She started in Edmonton at 96 K-LITE FM, then moved to Calgary to work with 66 CFR/KISSFM and Sales, Marketing & Events for Calgary Flames Radio. Candace and her husband Lorne Webber incorporated Adventure Marketing Company in 2000. AMC produced sporting events and highlight TV shows for Luge Canada, Water Ski Canada, Alpine Canada, and more. Adventure Marketing Company pivoted from sports to live music and started producing a live music broadcast series in 2012, Stampede City Sessions. You can watch all of the one hour episodes on their website: www.stampedecitysessions.com
Brian Fauteux is an associate professor of Popular Music and Media Studies at the University of Alberta. He holds a PhD in Communication from Concordia (Montreal) and has completed a SSHRC Postdoctoral Fellowship in Media & Cultural Studies at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. He researches and writes about music industries and music radio, often with a focus on Canada, and is the author of Music in Range: The Culture of Canadian Campus Radio, a book that explores the history of campus radio and its connection to local music scenes. He is now working on a book on the cultural history of satellite radio and popular music in the 2000s as well as a collaborative research project that considers ways to rethink policy, music infrastructure, and funding frameworks that put artists first. He plays the drums and has been a Polaris Prize juror for the past few years.
Courtney Milford is an arts and culture professional with a passion for community development and facilitating economically viable, impactful, and engaging live events and programs. She has been working in leadership roles within the Arts and Culture sector for the past 7 years and has experience working with municipal bodies, non-profit organizations, and higher education environments. Valuing connection points and opportunities to learn and share, she identifies as somewhat of a professional dot-connector. She has been responsible for various multi-year community sponsorship agreements and partnerships during her 4 years as Arts & Culture Coordinator for the Town of Whitecourt and worked to establish the Whitecourt & Woodlands Performing Arts Society as a viable market and included venue amongst the Western Performing Arts Centers circuit. In her current role as the Event Producer with the Students’ Association of MacEwan University, Courtney oversees all large scale events, and most recently served as the
Western Regional Director for the Canadian Organization of Campus Activities (COCA) where she worked on membership outreach and spearheaded various regional routing collaborations. While she can't carry a tune in a bucket, Courtney has a positive demeanour and well-honed skill set that has served her well in the Events Industry thus far.
Steve Derpack, born and raised in Edmonton (and Spruce Grove) started JCL Productions, a multi-faceted company that now specializes in concert promotion, event planning, festival management, live music production, and consultation, in 2006. Prior to this, he performed in a touring band in the mid to late 1990s. After moving into the GM role and full time talent buyer for the Rev, Steve moved a couple of years later to the U of A Students’ Union to oversee the portfolio of Entertainment and Programming. During this time, Steve promoted countless concerts, events, and produced programs in various indoor and outdoor spaces on campus. Steve co-founded the Edmonton Music Awards in 2010, and promoted concerts independently in Edmonton and throughout Western Canada, working with various venues including The Haven Social Club and Avenue Theatre. Steve also opened the Mercury Room with two partners, and went on to become the Executive Director for the Arts Touring Alliance of Alberta. Steve has partnered with various entities like the Edmonton Folk Music Festival, Live at the Winspear, and Worldwide Music Ventures, which saw Steve travel back-to-back tours of Western Canada. In 2018, Steve became Artistic Director & Facility Supervisor at Festival Place, in Sherwood Park and in 2021, Steve produced a documentary about a year in the life of local artists during a pandemic. Steve will return as the Artist Liaison to support the Bear Creek Folk Festival in Grande Prairie in Aug 2022. Steve is excited to join the Board of Directors and is proud to represent Alberta Music in all ways possible, and looks forward to meeting many new and dynamic people ahead.
Jose Aristóteles Canga – simply nicknamed as “Ari” by locals - is an Edmonton-based keyboardist, music producer and sound engineer. He is an Associate Producer and Radio Technician at CBC/Radio Canada, and is a Digital Audio Production Graduate from Pixel Blue College. Ari is multi-lingual in English, French, Portuguese, Spanish and Lingala. Originally from Angola, Ari is a World Music, Afro-fusion and Jazz aficionado. His passion of how history, music genres, and cultures interconnect can be recognized within his vibrant compositions, where he often blends traditional elements with modern flair. As a producer and sound engineer, Aristóteles has worked with artists from North and South America, Europe, Africa, and Southeast Asia in a multitude of additional genres, including Pop, Folk, Hip-Hop, R&B, Electronic, Afrobeat, Semba, Kizomba, and Kuduro. Ari has produced and/or mixed music for many artists, including Amanda Malela, Arlo Maverick, Stephanie French, and more. He has performed alongside Jaguar Wright, The Melisizwe Brothers, Nuela Charles, poet laureate Titilope Sonuga and many more. Aristóteles is also the keyboardist and founding member of Melafrique, a Neo-Soul Afro-fusion band that launched in Edmonton in 2016. Their single, “Not Alone” was released in 2020 and has been featured on CBC Radio One’s Key of A with Tarik Robinson and EDify Magazine. Melafrique has performed at numerous local events, such as Edmonton Jazz Fest, Taste of Edmonton, Heritage Festival, The Works Art & Design Festival, Folk Fest, 5 Artists 1 Love, and more.
Dan Clapson is the co-founder of the Blue Jay Sessions event series and co-owner of Calgary venue The Prairie Emporium. He programs a wide range of live entertainment throughout the year and has been nominated for a variety of awards by associations like the CCMA, CMAB and the YYC Music Awards. In 2022, he was named Talent Buyer of the Year by Country Music Alberta.
In 2019, he co-produced the first queer country concert in the history of the Calgary Stampede, alongside Blake Spence of Detour YYC, which featured co-headliners Trixie Mattel and Nice Horse as well as opening act Mariya Stokes.
Separately from the music and events realm, Clapson is PR/communications expert and one of Canada’s most celebrated food and lifestyle writers. His work has appeared in publications including The Globe and Mail, Out Magazine, Air Canada enRoute, Eater, Calgary Herald, Xtra Magazine and many more. He co-owns the media site EatNorth.com and appears as a culinary expert on radio and television programs such as Global News and CTV Morning Live.
His debut cookbook Prairie will be released on Aug. 29, 2023, via publisher Penguin Random House.
Manuela Wuthrich aka Nuela Charles
3x JUNO-Award nominated Nuela Charles is an alternative/pop singer-songwriter with a soulful edge. Born in Kenya, raised in Switzerland, Canada and the Bahamas before settling back in Canada, Charles’ music is infused with her multicultural upbringing. With 5 studio projects released to critical acclaim, multiple award wins, and even more nominations, Charles released her self-titled 6th studio project, Nuela Charles in September 2022. Her music has been streamed collectively over 5 million times and can be heard on the hit show Jane the Virgin, Netflix’s Tiny Pretty Things, and much more.
Natasha began her career over 10 years ago in Vancouver, BC, working music festivals such as The Squamish Valley Music Festival & Skookum Art and Music Festival, after moving back to Alberta she continued as a Promoter Rep for Union Events. She currently holds the role of Director of Production & Business Development for Stampede Entertainment, curating and producing shows across Western Canada. In the fall of 2018 Natasha was accepted into Canada's Music Incubator Artist Manager program and since then has been working with Country Music Artist, Mariya Stokes and Dream-Pop Artist Clea Anaïs. Natasha was recently nominated for Production Manager of the Year at the Canadian Live Music Awards (2023) and is the Chapter Head for Women In Music Canada - Calgary Branch.