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TEDxToronto Announces Conference Performers and Demos

TORONTO [September 5th, 2013]Performers_Sept 5

Rounding out the twelve speakers already announced for their 2013 Conference, TEDxToronto has just revealed a final, critical component of their lineup for the day. The conference, taking place on September 26, 2013 at the Royal Conservatory of Music in Toronto, will focus on the theme “The Choices We Make”. As part of their programming, many TED and TEDx events often intersperse TEDTalks or TEDxTalks with stage performances and technical demonstrations, or “demos.”

For their 2013 conference, TEDxToronto has selected performers and demos they believe not only complement the stellar lineup of speakers they have secured, but that will be just as inspiring for delegates, provoking discussion and action. They consist of “The Godfather of Canadian Hip Hop,” an award-winning indigenous dance performance company, a rock icon, mechatronic engineers, and the man who performed the first long distance telementoring neurosurgery in the world.

Regarding the three performers booked in for the event, Afshin Mousavian, chair and co-organizer of TEDxToronto, says that “performances like the ones you’ll see at TEDxToronto 2013 are another way to generate an emotional reaction, stimulating conversation and potentially acting as a catalyst for change in the lives of those in the audience.”

Afshin went on to say: “the kinds of technical demos we’ll see on stage offer a bit of a sneak peek at technologies of the future that are being realized today. We’re proud that some of the world’s best and brightest are from Canada, and we’re thrilled that these change makers have chosen to join us for TEDxToronto 2013.”


The Performers and Demos are:

Performer: Maestro Fresh Wes (@MaestroFreshWes)

Celebrating his 25th anniversary in the music industry, "Maestro" Fresh Wes Williams is one of Canada’s most successful and influential Hip Hop artists and premier multi-media personalities. His signature song "Let Your Backbone Slide" was the first Canadian Hip Hop single to ever go gold. Wes stars as a high school teacher on CBCs hit show, "Mr. D." Wes is also the author of the critically-acclaimed book, "Stick To Your Vision.” His new album and collaboration project 'Orchestrated Noise' was released in Spring 2013.

Performer: Red Sky (@redskyconnect)

Red Sky is Canada's leading company of world Indigenous performance in dance, theatre and music. This multi-award-winning company was founded by Artistic Director Sandra Laronde in 2000. Red Sky has garnered an international reputation for collaborating on landmark projects with prestigious artists and companies from around the globe. Red Sky captures and ignites the imagination of millions of people from nine countries on four continents. Red Sky highlights the promise and potential of what is possible within contemporary Indigenous performance.

Performer: Matthew Good (@mattgood)

Throughout his two decades at the forefront of Canadian music, rock icon Matthew Good has only been one thing: unpredictable. Refusing to adhere to the path of least resistance – a flat, unwavering, pop/rock cultivator status – Good has successfully shuffled through musical genres & aural approaches. Multiplatinum sales, four Juno awards, 19 nominations overall & almost one million albums in the hands of fans asserts Good as the epitome of an artist & creator: invoking personal challenge, taking unprecedented courses & carving his own path.

Demo: Thalmic Labs (@thalmic)

Stephen Lake, Matthew Bailey and Aaron Grant are the co-founders of Thalmic Labs. Building on the knowledge that they gained through the Mechatronics Engineering program at the University of Waterloo and numerous work experiences, the idea for MYO was born in April 2012 as the three sought out to answer a fundamental question: how do we connect the real and the digital worlds as we move towards wearable and ubiquitous computing?

Demo: Dr. Ivar M. Mendez

Dr. Mendez is a Fellow of the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada & the
American College of Surgeons. Dr. Mendez’ research focus is in functional neurosurgery, brain repair, stem cells and robotics. Works in the use of remote-presence robots for medical care in neurosurgery. In 2002, Dr. Mendez and his team performed the first long distance telementoring neurosurgery in the world. Winner of the 2011 Health Canada Award for Contribution to the Improvement of the Health of Canadians. Also a gifted photographer and sculptor

The performers and demos announced today join speakers including: Dr. Steve Mann, Joel MacCharles, Steph Guthrie, Darrell Bricker, Rodolphe el-Khoury, Michael Stone, Dr. Brendan Frey, Ti-Anna Wang, Mark Henick, Gabrielle Scrimshaw, Deborah S. Berlin-Romalis and Mark Bowden (Click here for more information). Conference hosts will be announced over the coming weeks.

To learn more about the speakers and the conference, visit

Photos of the performers and demos are available upon request.

About TEDx, x = independently organized event

In the spirit of ideas worth spreading, TEDx is a program of local, self-organized events that bring people together to share a TED-like experience. At a TEDx event, TEDTalks video and live speakers combine to spark deep discussion and connection in a small group. These local, self-organized events are branded TEDx, where x = independently organized TED event. The TED Conference provides general guidance for the TEDx program, but individual TEDx events are self-organized. (Subject to certain rules and regulations.) 

About TED

TED is a nonprofit organization devoted to Ideas Worth Spreading. Started as a conference in California 26 years ago, TED has grown to support those world-changing ideas with many initiatives.

At a TED conference, the world’s leading thinkers and doers are asked to give the talk of their lives in 18 minutes or less. TED speakers have included Roger Ebert, Sheryl Sandberg, Bill Gates, Elizabeth Gilbert, Benoit Mandelbrot, Philippe Starck, Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, Brian Greene, Isabel Allende and former UK Prime Minister Gordon Brown. Three major TED events are held each year: The TED Conference takes place every spring in Vancouver, Canada, simultaneous with TEDActive, in Whistler, BC; and the TEDGlobal Conference takes place each summer in Edinburgh, Scotland.

On, talks from TED conferences are shared with the world for free as TED Talks videos. A new TED Talk is posted every weekday. Through the Open Translation Project, TED Talks are subtitled by volunteers worldwide into more than 90 languages. Through our distribution networks, TED Talks are shared on TV, radio, Netflix and many websites.

The TEDx initiative grants free licenses to people around the world to organize TED-style events in their communities with TED Talks and live speakers. More than 5,000 TEDx events have been held, and selected talks from these events are also turned into TED Talks videos.

The annual TED Prize grants $1 million to an exceptional individual with a wish to change the world. The TED Fellows program helps world-changing innovators from around the globe to become part of the TED community and, with its help, amplify the impact of their remarkable projects and activities. TED-Ed creates short video lessons by pairing master teachers with animators, for use in classroom instruction or independent learning.

Contact Information

For interviews with TEDxToronto organizers or speakers:
Candi Jeronimo
Public Relations Manager, TEDxToronto


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