SOM founder Michael Menegon gathered some of the best improvisors in Toronto to help him transform his vision on to the stage. 30 years of being a dance accompanist plus his own career as a contemporary dancer lead to where SOM is today. SOM is experiential. SOM is visual. SOM is auditory. SOM is movement. SOM taps into the creative mind of both the performers and the audiences.
Michael Menegon - percussion, vocals
Ian de Souza - Bass
Nilan Perera - Guitar
Dave Patel - Drums
Sound and Light Design:
Rick Sacks - drums
Andrea Koziol - singer
Pierre Mongeon - trumpet
Ian de Souza – Bass player
Uganda born, Toronto bred bass player and producer, Ian de Souza is the recipient of a Juno Award (2007), National Jazz Award (2009) and a Dora Mavor Moore Award nominee (2009).
Over his 35 year career as a musician, Ian has recorded and performed widely on over 4 continents, North America, Europe, Asia and Australia with artists as diverse as Jeff Martin, Jane Siberry, Carole Pope, Denzil Sinclair, Stephen Paige and Colin James (Canada), Bill Frissell, Cyro Baptista, Ursula Rucker, Paul Schaffer (US), Yograj Naik and San Page (India), Wayna, Aaron Nitunga, Jean Christophe Matata (Africa).
He is a founding member of the Jazz/Canadiana/improv quartet, Sisters Euclid and is a long time collaborator with electronic duo LAL, and torch-folk singer, Andrea Koziol.
In addition he composed music for Dancemaker’s Dance Company for choreographer, Nova Bhattacharya’s Red and White. He continues to compose for dancer/choreographer Joanna de Souza’s Chhandam Dance Company.
Nilan Perera – Guitar Player
Guitarist/composer Nilan Perera has been active in some of the most forward looking, influential and radical Canadian ensembles including NOMA, Bill Grove’s Not King Fudge, Handslang and the Excalceolators. He has performed and recorded with John Butcher, Evan Parker, William Parker, Hamid Drake, Jandek, Mary Margaret O’Hara, Glen Hall, John Oswald, David Toop, Sarah Peebles, Eddie Prevost, Urs Leimgruber, Rainer Wiens and Michael Ondaatje and many others. His decade+, award winning association with multidisciplinary artist Susanna Hood has placed him in the vanguard of experimental sound artists working in performance with three major works with Ms. Hood's company hum as well as many other independent dancer/choreographers and theatre companies.
Michael Menegon – SOM director, Drummer
While finishing his professional training as a dancer at the School of Toronto Dance Theatre Michael was introduced to and mentored with the legendary drummer/dance accompanist Ricardo Abruet for three years. Since graduating Michael has continued playing for classes while also dancing for DanceMakers, Toronto Dance Theatre and the Group de la Place Royale in Ottawa as well as self-producing and performing in over 20 works in Canada, Mexico, South America and Cuba. He received a Canada Council Award for choreography and has been critiqued for creating one of the top dances in 1999 for a work that used the Beat Suit, an electronic drum costume that allows the dancer to access and create the score while dancing. He has been a resident accompanist at Toronto Dance Theatre for 30 years and has accompanied for many great teachers including Peggy Baker, David Earle, Risa Steinberg, Serge Bennathan and many others from Canada and the U.S.
Jocelyn Mah - bio coming soon
Ellen Moore - bio coming soon
Pierre Mongeon - Trumpet, Flugalhorn, percussion
Award-winning songwriter, composer, arranger, trumpet, flugelhorn and keyboard player, Pierre is active in Toronto’s improvisation scene performing with various ensembles including his collective “Pierre Mongeon’s Transharmonic”.
Richard Blenman – Video Designer
Richard is the director of Tingle Media. He has been a staple in the DJ /VJ scene in Toronto for over two decades. His work has garnered him invitations to work with the Toronto International Film Festival, Mat Sundin of the Toronto Maple Leafs and numerous clubs and restaurants in Toronto and the US.
Elke Schroeder – Dancer
Elke Schroeder is a Toronto-based dance artist. A graduate of The School of Toronto Dance Theatre (2005) she has worked with Lucy Rupert /Blue Ceiling Dance, and Alias Dance Project, Jenn Goodwin, Amanda Acorn, Susie Burpee and Andrea Nann among others.
She is a long-time student of Jozef Frucek and Linda Kapetanea (RootlessRoot) in Brussels and her teaching centers on their Fighting Monkey Practice. She has also studied intensively with Iñaki Azpillaga, the dancers of Ultima Vez, Les Slovaks,and David Zambrano.
Lonii Garnons-Williams - Dancer
Lonii was born in Darwin, Northern territory, Australia where she moved from to begin her full-time training at Queensland Dance School of Excellence, Brisbane. In 2009 she graduated with a Certificate in Dance having received the Contemporary Dancer Scholarship and awarded runner up in the Cecchetti Queensland Gold metal.
She furthered her training in Perth, Western Australia at Western Australian Academy of Performing Arts (WAAPA).
Alison Keery - Dancer
Alison Keery is a dancer, educator and improviser based in Toronto. She was the co-founder of music and dance improvisation collective, Lila Ensemble with whom she toured Europe alongside up and coming composer Emilio Guim (Sweden).