Artist in Residence


2019 Artist in Residence

The City of Kitchener welcomes the 2019 Artist in Residence, Mary Neil: a community musician and founder of KW Junk Music which hosts participatory music making with handmade instruments from recycled items. Her passion for music is grounded in community building, sustainable practices and inclusive collaboration.

During her year long residency, Mary will create opportunities through workshop and events, for the community to make instruments, create unique musical compositions and to experiment. No musical experience is necessary to participate, just a willingness to explore, have fun and make new friends!

She hopes to incorporate these instruments on a music wall that will also link to the community compositions so everybody can enjoy music making!

Mary was recently a guest on the Coffee Matter Podcast.

Please check back regularly for updates on more events and upcoming workshops or sign up to the Kitchener Arts newsletter.

Proposals for the 2020 Artist in Residence are now being accepted. Learn more and get details about the information session (on Sept 9, 2019) on our AiR call for proposals page. 

Upcoming events:

Residency Kick-off Event, March 7

Thursday, March 7, 7 - 8:30 p.m

Kitchener City hall, Rotunda, 200 King Street, West, Kitchener

Join Mary as she talks about her practice to date engaging communities across the region and upcoming plans for her residency. Participate in a musical performance with Mary. All welcome, no registration required.

Trillium Public School, May 6

Monday, May 6

Mary will visit with elementary grade students to create instruments and a composition highlighting the theme of resiliency. Closed to the public.

Young @rt, May 9

Thursday, May 9, 6:30 - 8:30 p.m.

Waterloo Region Museum, 10 Huron Road, Kitchener

Youth and guests attending the event will have a chance to participate in a musical session to reflect their varied interests in the arts. This will compliment other programming during this event that celebrates youth in the arts. Free, open to the public; no registration necessary. Get more information.

Yuva Arts Project, May 25

Saturday, May 25, 3 - 6 p.m.

Forest Heights Community Centre, 1700 Queen's Boulevard, Kitchener

The Yuva Arts Project is a cross-cultural collaborative project that involves a group of youth travelling from the red light district of Mumbai, India to our region. The group will collaborate with local Indigenous and newcomer youth through the creative arts to embark on a journey towards leadership and self worth. Mary will be engaging the youth in a collaborative jam session.

Closed to the public. More information on the project can be found here.

Hohner Avenue Porch Party, May 25

Saturday, May 25, 7 - 7:30 p.m.

Hohner Avenue, Kitchener

Come get your groove on during this fun event! Mary is the featured musician and will be asking the community: what does this porch party mean to you? Free, all ages, open to the public, no registration necessary. Get more information.

Neighbour's Day at KPL, June 8

Saturday, June 8, 1 - 3:30 p.m.

Kitchener Public Library, main branch, 85 Queen Street North, Kitchener

Mary will host a workshop of making instruments from recycled items and follow with a super fun junk music jam! She hopes to hear your interpretation of what the Kitchener Public Library means to you. Free, all ages. If you are interested in joining, please register here.

Amigos Social Spanish Group 55+, June 15

Saturday, June 15, 11:30 a.m. - 1:30 p.m.

Downtown Community Centre, 35 Weber Street, West, Kitchener

Mary will join The Amigos Social Spanish Group, a 55+ adults group, to get their musical perspective on the City of Kitchener. New members are always welcome. If you are interested in joining, please register here.

Cherry Park Festival, July 6

Saturday, July 6, 2 - 4 p.m.

Cherry Park, Kitchener

If you ever wanted to play a musical instrument, harbour a hidden dream of becoming a drummer or simply enjoy music and interactive play, join Mary for a junk music jam. Try out jammin' on different instruments and your hand at composing short musical compositions, in an inclusive and collaborative environment. Free, all ages, open to the public, no registration necessary.

Kitchener Market, July 13 POSTPONED

Saturday, July 13, 10 a.m. - 2 p.m.

Kitchener Market, 300 King Street, East, Kitchener

This event has been postponed. Please check back for re-scheduling updates.

Kultrun, July 13

Saturday, July 13, 3 - 4p.m.

Join Mary in the workshop tent for a community composition workshop. It's free and fun for whole family! Get more information.

Schneider Creek Porch Party, July 27

Saturday, July 27, 4 - 5 p.m.

Schneider Haus National Historic Site, 466 Queen Street, South, Kitchener

Another chance to jam with Mary and listen to other local musicians at a community building event. Free, all ages, open to the public, no registration necessary. Get more information.

Blues Festival, August 10

Saturday, August 10, 11 a.m. - 2 p.m.

The Museum, 10 King Street, West, Kitchener

Jam a bluesy tune with Mary on ready made "junk" instruments during one of Kitchener's most popular festivals. Stay on for a workshop to make your own instruments. All ages, open to the public. Get more information and register.

Belmont Village Bestival, September 14

Saturday, September 14, 12:30 - 2:30 p.m.

Belmont Village, Kitchener

Details forthcoming. Free, all ages, open to the public, no registration necessary.

 Kitchener Market, November 9

 Saturday, November 9, 10:00 - 11:00 a.m.

 Kitchener Market, 300 King Street, East Kitchener

 Join Mary for a musical performance highlighting some of the compositions she created along with the community at the events during her residency. Get more information.


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