The Band

The Band

WE'RE A FRIENDLY AND TALENTED TEAM. HERE'S WHERE THE DYNAMICS MEETS THE MECHANICS! EVERYTHING YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT TASSO MEMBERS YOU WILL FIND RIGHT HERE.

Rhianne

Hello, I am Rhianne and I have been a part of TASSO for 4 years now. I’ve been playing steelpan since I started school at age 4 and it has always been a very important musical element in my life. The steel drums are a very fun instrument to play and I love our repertoire. Outside of music, I play field hockey at school and row outside of school. I am very involved in environmental science competitions as well as an organization competing in competitions about Ancient Greek and Roman culture. Some would call these things ‘nerd Olympics’ but I love being in a climate of people with the same passions as me just like at these international music festivals.

Spencer

Hey I’m Spencer and here are some things you might want to know about me. One big thing in my life is my love for playing the steelpan in the TASSO orchestra. The experience I get from having the opportunity to play such a unique instrument with such talented band members and band leader is priceless. Outside of pan I enjoy playing sports such as soccer, football, basketball and swimming. I also work as a lifeguard and a swim instructor and being able to teach a child the skill of being able to swim Is very rewarding. I enjoy socializing with people and i am always down for a good time and laugh.

Eleni

My name is Eleni, I’m 18 years old and I’ve been in this band for the past 7 years. I love tomatoes but hate ketchup, I take my sugar with coffee, and I can’t have cereal with milk without a glass of water. Ever. On a more serious note, my hobbies include playing competitive volleyball at a national and provincial level as my team has ranked 10th in Canada and 3rd in Ontario. I also very much enjoy taking on leadership roles both in and outside of the school. Whether it be on student council or helping with charities, I’m always the first to volunteer to help organize. I’m an extremely adventurous but calm and collected girl which is why opportunities like those spark my interest! Being 18 comes with many once in a life time experiences. My life so far has consisted of LOTS travelling with not only the band all over the world, but more specifically to Greece as that’s where I’m from! As I grow older I plan to continue travelling the world and exploring new places because being on a plane honestly just comes naturally to me. For example, I LIVE for the turbulence – it’s like a mini roller coaster to me… From the experiences and opportunities I’ve been given over the years, I have developed many skills and have grown as individual. My personality has developed into a mature but silly, enthusiastic, driven girl, but by being 18, I think it’s safe to say that there are many more to come and I plan on cherishing each and every one of them!!

Marcus

My name is Marcus Reeb and I am a 17 year old senior who just graduated from Lyndon Institute High School in Vermont, USA. I am from Savannah which is a small city in Georgia but have spent my years growing up in Washington D.C., Ottawa, but mostly Toronto. I started playing steel pan with TASSO in elementary school and all the way through high school. I have devoted my time to football since the age of 7 and it’s pretty much been the other half of my life. I have won gatorade player of the game, NEK player of the game, and set the record for my high school in most rushing touch downs in a half. I will be attending Mississippi Valley State University to continue my football career and academic career where I will be studying PRE business, sports management, and physical education. In my spare time when I am not training or doing school work I love to hang out with my friends, drive around, play Xbox, and hang out in the city because as of late I have been away and haven’t had many chances to do that. This summer I plan on working for the Canadian Football League (CFL) with their head office in Toronto later on this summer. I love eating steak, pizza, and maynard gummies.

Vladimir

Born and raised in Toronto, I started playing steelpan as part of my musical instruction at Rosedale Public School at the age of four. I joined the alumni band, TASSO, when I entered middle school, and since then, I have expanded my musical knowledge as well as going on amazing trips to Scotland, Germany, Austria, and the Czech Republic with the Steel Pan band. Now 17 years old, I am at the end of highschool. I have been playing Piano for the same amount of time as the Steel Pan, these instruments have made me love music. I like to draw and watch movies in my spare time. I am also on a competitive ski team. For the past school year, I have assisted TASSO leader Salmon Cupid as a teaching assistant at Rosedale Public School. I plan to become a teacher after university, and working with Mr. Cupid has helped me to fully realise this goal. I am very excited to travel to Australia with TASSO this summer and experience the other great musical talent from around the world.

Alexus

My name is Alexus and I am a third year member of the Toronto All Stars Steelpan Orchestra (TASSO). I have a passion for the arts and studied dramatic arts at the Young People’s Theatre(YPT) and Art Starts in Toronto. I also enjoy playing the drums, clarinet and socializing with friends. My future aspiration is to be a Judge in the Court of Law!

Ben

Hi, my name is Ben, I am 11 years old (turning 12 soon), and I love sports. My favorite sports to play are Baseball and Hockey, and I play competitive hockey for the North York Knights. In music, my favourite instruments to play are piano and steelpan. I have been part of the band for 2 years, as I joined TASSO in the beginning of grade 5. My favourite food to eat is pizza, even though I like to eat lots of different things. I am in grade 6 now, and just recently our class won the gold award in the Kiwanis Music Festival. I am SUPER excited to go to Australia, even though I am still thinking about how to kill 24 hours on a plane!

Ben

My name is Ben. I’m 17 years old and one of the newest members of TASSO, since I started less than a year ago. I’m currently attending the YMCA Academy. I hope to become a chef one day. Some of my interests include food, cooking, and restaurants. I love trying all kinds of international foods. My favourite food is sushi. I plan on eating a lot of sushi and learning how to prepare it when I visit Japan with my family before travelling to Australia this summer. I like bike riding, playing baseball and basketball. I’m a fan of the Blue Jays and Raptors. I recently completed my first 5km run and I hope to compete in others. I’m really looking forward to going back to Camp Kodiak for my 7th summer because I enjoy swimming, go-carting, knee boarding, rock climbing and hanging out with my friends. I enjoy volunteering and helping others that are less fortunate. I’m extremely passionate about music and playing the steelpan. I started playing about 4 years ago at my school as well as with lessons through Afropan. It was so much fun performing with TASSO in Toronto’s 112th Annual Santa Claus Parade. I was recently honoured to play at my cousin’s wedding. I’m really looking forward to performing at The Sydney Opera House this July for The Australian International Music Festival. I’m pretty easy going and kind hearted. I feel that when you’re smiling, the whole world smiles with you!

Zindzi

My name Zindzi, I have been in Salmon’s TASSO for 6 years now and it has honestly been the best time of my life. Besides spending my Fridays jamming out to Steel Pan I have also been a competitive dancer, played rugby, and been captain on my schools soccer team. When not participating in those activities I write short stories and poetry which I have preformed at various events. I’ve also been a devout vegan since I was 7. Being Trinidadian I’ve always had a love and appreciation for Caribbean music. Playing with TASSO has given me the opportunity to play amazing music and travel the world with my closest friends and family. TASSO has helped me with becoming the confident leader I am today and I’m so excited to get the opportunity to compete in the Sydney Opera House.

Jordan

My name is Jordan and I am a proud member of the Toronto All Stars Steel Orchestra. I began my journey into the world of music at 4 years old when my parents signed me up for piano lessons. From then I have played different instruments, but the most memorable one by far is the steelpan. Through playing the steelpan I have learned more about music and have been given the amazing opportunity to travel around the globe playing the only instrument invented in the 20th century. Being in this group and playing the steelpan has opened my eyes to the world and given me a true sense of what it means to be a musician. The other instruments I play include the piano, saxophone, and guitar. Aside from music I also enjoy playing sports and my favorite one is soccer. Some of my other pastimes are listening to music and reading. I am currently pursuing my NLS certification in the hope of becoming a lifeguard and/or a swim instructor with the ultimate goal of getting a part-time job.

Jason

My name is Jason and I have been in the Toronto All Stars Steel Orchestra for the last 3 ½ years. I was the youngest member for 2 of those years. I remember barely being able to get my arms above the basses comfortably. Now I’m no longer the youngest, I’m going on my second trip with the group, and people can see me properly above the pans….I think. I live by a quote by Maya Angelou, “You may encounter many defeats, but you must not be defeated”. This quote motivates me in all aspects of my life whether I am playing soccer, football, or basketball. Soccer consumes most of my free time but I also like to play board games and do track and field. I enjoy spending time with my family and we could be doing anything really and I would still have fun. People (excluding teachers) describe me as funny, competitive, athletic, fast, and smart. Don’t even wonder about that “excluding teachers” part, there just not enough space to go into it.

Justin

My name is Justin and I have been a part of the Toronto All Stars Steel Orchestra (TASSO) since September 2013 and enjoy it very much. I hope to remain a part of TASSO even after I’m finished high school. The greatest satisfaction for me is probably that I get to show my parents through my playing because my mom is from Trinidad (the official birthplace of the steelpan) and my dad is from Jamaica. Playing the steelpan allows me to show off my Caribbean roots. Outside of steel pan I enjoy playing soccer, basketball, and football. I recently received the certification to become a soccer referee; now all I need is some actual games to ref. I like ketchup but not tomatoes, and grapes but not raisins, and every morning I have to eat or drink something orange…..just because. A few words I would use to describe myself are athletic, a risk-taker, honest, and entertaining. My favourite foods are pizza, burgers, fries and chicken. Did I say fries already? Well, I suppose a second time doesn’t hurt…and fries.

Emily

My name is Emily, I am 16 years old and attend Northern Secondary School. I have been part of TASSO for 5 years and have traveled to Germany and Scotland on tour with the band. I have always had a great time traveling and playing all around the world. Some of my hobbies include swimming, being a lifeguard, going on walks, hanging out with friends, and watching Netflix. I also love helping out and getting involved in the community. I do tons of volunteering and always love giving a helping hand. I have had many amazing experiences in my life and I can’t wait to add playing with the band in Australia to them

Julian

Hello my name is a Julian and I am a part of TASSO.  I joined the band in late September following friends and family who joined in past years. For me steelpan is more than just music, it is to make friends, create memories and express yourself. Outside of pan I enjoy playing soccer both in school and on a competitive team. I aim high and strive to do my best.

Nigisti

My name is Nigisti, I have been in salmon Cupid’s amazing steel pan orchestra, Toronto All Stars, since I was in grade seven. I am now graduating from post secondary school with a welding and cosmetology certificate. I am a makeup artist, and an artistic director. I love the concept of enhancing and highlighting ones beauty through paint and makeup. On my free time I enjoy dancing, painting and writing poetry. As someone who grew up in a Rastafarian home, Ive been raised to eat vegan my entire life. Since I don’t eat animals, many of my peers assume that I don’t know what “good food” is. When I say both my parents are vegan chefs, and I cook one of my “gisti specials”, I always show them another side of food, the vegan side with a Caribbean twist! Alongside Caribbean food I also love Caribbean music. Every Friday I get to be apart of creating music that cateres to everyone. We mesh songs together that are old classics and fresh hits! Attending practices  gets me excited to see what Salmon Cupid  and my band members create together. As a graduating member of the Toronto All Stars, I wish all the best to my pan family. I know they will continue to shine and amaze people with their talents. I will always have a passionate love for the Toronto All Stars Steel Orchestra, it’s been in my life for many years. Once a part of the  TASSO family, always a part of the TASSO family.

Jeremy

Hello my name is Jeremy, I am 18 years old and I am a Jamaican-Canadian hip hop dancer and photographer from Toronto, Ontario. I love the summer, going on adventures and drinking water. I have been playing steel pan for six years and I love it. I even made one a few years ago. Playing steelpan is a great way for me to connect with my Caribbean heritage. I am a mixed media artist, currently working with photography, plants and cement. Some of my artwork has been featured on Afropunk and Further Magazine. I continue to learn and express myself and my African heritage through different mediums. My intentions are to make art for black kids, black kids who feel like they cannot be excellent and express their creativity. A lot of black youth feel afraid to step into their creative side without judgment or if they do so they are not considered black. With my passion for design I want to be an interior designer when I’m older as well as a DJ and photographer.

Irene

Claire

My name is Claire and I’m 13 years old. I have been in TASSO for three years now. Outside of TASSO I enjoy playing soccer and guitar. I started playing soccer when I was five and have been on my current team for almost five years. I also like playing the guitar in school. Even though I’m not very good I like playing songs that I hear everyday. I enjoy playing the steelpan in other countries and listening to new kinds of music.

Joshua

Maeve

Emma

My name is Emma. I am 15 years old. I only joined TASSO recently but I’m really enjoying it and plan to stay for a long time. When I’m not doing steel pan you can find me horseback riding or playing guitar. My horseback riding career started at the age of nine when I began riding with my heart set on showing. Now I ride for fun and I’m enjoying that a lot more than training to show. I’ve been playing guitar for almost 3 years and I absolutely love it, ever since I was a child I’ve listened to old rock like Pink Floyd, Queen, Jimi Hendrix, The Rolling Stones and Guns N’ Roses to name a few. At school you can find me in the band room. I major in advanced band were I play the flute. Advanced band is a big responsibility that takes up almost all of my time, advanced band means I play a year up with the grade 10’s. In grade 11 I want to take psychology so I can hopefully have the credits to get into U of T for criminal psychology or neurosciences. I’m very interested in how the brain works and I would one day like to work with convicted killers to see how their brains work. I am a very down to earth person and outgoing once I get to know the people around me. I love performing at high levels as I can focus when it comes crunch time. TASSO is great and I’m very happy with my decision to join the band. I’m very thankful to Mr. Cupid for giving me the opportunity to learn and play with the band.

Isadora

Hi, I’m Isadora and I am 14 years old. I have been playing steelpan since the age of four and I have been in TASSO for the past five years. Being in the band has helped me enhance my musical skills as I play many other instruments like the piano, ukulele, guitar and clarinet. I have a huge passion for dance and do many styles such as ballet, jazz, tap and modern and I love performing my dances. I live for the stage energy! I love baking all sorts of things including cookies and decorative cupcakes but my favourite things to bake are novelty cakes, and I like eating them too. I adore anything to do with horses and horseback riding as they are my favourite animals and riding is my favourite sport. This will be my third time travelling with the band and I can’t wait for Australia!

Sophia

Hi, my name is Sophia. I’m a comedian and if you mess with me … I’ll roast you … Just kidding! I am 11 years old and I started playing steelpan when I was three. My favourite pan is the Six Base because it carries the root notes and it is very easy to dance to, or in my case, bob up and down to. My dad is Salmon Cupid and he and my mom are both from Trinidad where the steelpan originated. If you see us out as a family it’s not deja vu, I have an identical twin. I love traveling. My favorite sports are volleyball, track and cricket. I also LOVE to eat! I’m currently on a sea food diet. Any food I “see” I eat. Some of my hobbies are making collages, reading, writing (poems and short stories in particular) and trying to discover new favourite foods. I’ve been in math clubs, art clubs on my school’s sport teams, but my favorite activity by far is participation in Battle of the Books. I have a few book series that I am collecting. My favourite one is Heroes of Olympus by Rick Riordan. Some words that best describe me are funny, artistic, individual and curious.

Salmon

My name is Salmon Cupid. I have the privilege of being the Musical Director of the Toronto All Stars Steel Orchestra. From an early age I learned and I live by one word. PASSION!

Sebastian

My name is Sebastian. I am 13 years old. I am very excited to start high school this fall. I have been a member of TASSO for 2 years but I have been playing steel pan with Salmon since I was 4 years old. In grade 6 I won the Steel Pan award and I felt very happy.

I excel at Math, Science, and Sports such as soccer, basketball, football, skiing, skating, and swimming. I am a very athletic and competitive person who dislikes losing and I believe that sports are good for my health, can help develop my leadership skills, and make new friends.

My hobbies include reading, watching movies, playing video games, basketball, and soccer. I play competitive soccer at club level and my team recently won our winter league at the Hanger. I love fruits and especially strawberries. I can finish a whole pound of strawberries at a meal!

My parents immigrated to Canada from Romania. I fluently speak Romanian, English, and am currently learning French. I think it is important to speak more than one language because it opens up doors to other cultures. I also like travelling to Europe because that is where my roots are from. Some countries in Europe that I have visited include: Romania, Germany, Switzerland, Italy, and France. I am very excited to explore Australia and I am grateful that TASSO has given me such a wonderful opportunity.

In 10 years I see myself becoming a professional athlete, a doctor, or a dentist.

Christa

Hello, I’m Christa! I am 11 years old and, unlike my twin sister, I am not funny at all. Usually, I have to inform people once I’ve told a joke.

I love to read novels, especially genres like fantasy and mystery. I am currently collecting two book series. One is The Land of Stories by Chris Colfer and the other is Neil Flambe by Kevin Sylvester (my profile picture here is of Kevin Sylvester and me). Whenever I’m not in the mood to read (which is not often) I enjoy watching the news and drinking tea. Some sporting activities I enjoy the most are soccer, volleyball, lacrosse and sprinting.

When I get older I would like to be an entrepreneur and work in the culinary arts and financing. This is because cooking has always fascinated me and income tax and banking interest me.

I have been playing the steelpan since I was 3 years old. When I was 6 years old I played O Canada for the launch of the Toronto Caribbean Carnival at Nathan Phillips Square. I have been a part of TASSO for a long time. I believe that it’s a great place to learn a unique instrument and have fun at the same time.

Morgan

My name is Morgan and I am 13 years old. I have been playing steelpan from Kindergarten. I enjoy going on the internet and playing around with the computerize steelpan in my free time. I am always busy playing different sports such as squash, badminton, ping pong, tennis, tae kwon do and the track and field sport shot put.  My favorite sport is volleyball. My mom had me try curling and that the sport I don’t like the most. I like to play games also on the computer. I am a quiet person most of the time but sometimes I enjoy speaking.

Josh

Adam

My name is Adam, and for some strange reason I have an aversion to, apples, snakes, and girls named Eve. I’m in Grade 8 and I’ve liked to play soccer since I was six years old. I really enjoy the outdoors and I love going camping. I even camped outside in the frigid winter with my Scouts troupe one weekend. I also like to run, and participate in school track and field every year, and I plan to join a track team outside of school. I specifically like to run the 1500 meter, and 100 meter races. This year I was on  my school’s 4×100 relay team, and we placed 3rd in Toronto. In grades 5, 6, and 7, I placed 6th in toronto for the 1500 meter. I plan to continue track into high school and make it into the Ontario Finals.

Moriah

Hello, my name is Moriah. I am 13 years old and have played pan with TASSO for many years now and hope to for many years to come. I have been playing the steelpan for as long as I can remember. The first steelpan I owned was a baby sized red steelpan which I played around with even before I could walk. Both of my parents are Trinidadian so steelpan is in my blood! The steelpan that I regularly play during practices and performances is the Tenor steelpan. It is the steelpan that typically carries the melody of the song the orchestra plays.

My dad, Salmon Cupid, is the Musical Director of TASSO. I have twin sisters who also are a part of the band which means double trouble for me to handle.

My passions are traveling, exploring the world and playing sports (lots and lots of sports). I’ve participated in every sport that my school offers to intermediate students except for basketball and badminton. A few of my favourite sports are flag football, volleyball, ultimate frisbee and track.

I’m on the student council at my school. There are 13 members on the council which is comprised of grade 7 and grade 8 students. I am one of only three grade 7’s to secure a place on the council. This team offers leadership and support to the school community and I am very proud to be a part of it.

What I’ve noticed throughout the years about TASSO is that as our members grow older and retire from the band they always find a way to come back, visit and play with us again. TASSO members are not just members, we’re family and that’s what makes it welcoming and special.