CBC and The Canadian Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences (CARAS) have announced the JUNOs 365 Songwriters’ Circle virtual series, adapted for an online audience after the popular “Jewel of the JUNOs” event was cancelled in Saskatoon due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Presented by SOCAN in association with Music Publishers Canada, it’s now a series of five online events beginning this Friday, May 1, 2020, featuring some of Canada’s best songwriters telling the intriguing stories behind the songs, and performing from their homes. The first episode will feature your host, JUNO and SOCAN Award winner Brett Kissel, bringing together stories and songs from JUNO Award nominees Dominique Fils-Aimé, Kaia Kater, and Devon Portielje of Half Moon Run.

The JUNOs 365 Songwriters’ Circle will be available free in Canada on CBC Gem and globally on CBC Music’s Facebook and YouTube pages and cbcmusic.ca/junos starting on Friday, May 1, at 8:00 p.m. ET. The remaining four episodes will be released every other week on Fridays, until June 26.

“It’s really special for us to be able to partner with CBC Music to bring the JUNO Songwriters’ Circle to life virtually for Canadian music fans across the country and around the world, so they can experience first-hand the magic of this event,” said Allan Reid, President & CEO, CARAS/The JUNO Awards and MusiCounts. “During these difficult and unprecedented times, it’s the artist’s words and music in which we find solace. We need our artists now more than ever, so come and enjoy their stories and songs in this truly unique musical experience.”

“JUNO Songwriters’ Circle is one of the most highly-anticipated events each year during JUNO Week, said Steve Jordan, Senior Director, CBC Music. “As we all continue to navigate this challenging time, we’re happy to have an opportunity to partner with CARAS to bring this intimate musical event to audiences at home, and support some of our country’s most talented musicians by sharing their powerful stories and performances.”

Each host and the participating songwriters for future JUNOs 365 Songwriters’ Circle episodes will be revealed in advance of each broadcast. For more information, visit cbcmusic.ca/junos.

Following the cancellation, due to the current pandemic, of the televised awards presentation that had been planned for early June, Québec Cinéma has released the names of this year’s 27 Iris Award finalists on April 23. Six SOCAN #ComposersWhoScore are nominated in the Best Original Music category. Québec Cinéma, a not-for-profit organization advocating Quebec film, wanted to publicize the outstanding work of Quebec filmmakers in spite of the fact that an alternate official awards presentation has not yet been found.

The 2020 #ComposersWhoScore nominees in the Best Original Music category are:

  • Andréa Bélanger (SOCAN), David Ratté (Will Driving West) (SOCAN) for And the Birds Rained Down
  • Jean-Michel Blais (SOCAN) for Matthias & Maxime
  • Jean Massicotte (SOCAN), Jad Orphée Chami (SOCAN) for Antigone. Publishers: Ho-Tune Musique (SOCAN) and ACPAV
  • Howard Shore (ASCAP) for The Song of Names
  • Peter Venne (SOCAN) for The Twenieth Century

In partnership with Radio-Canada, Québec Cinéma is currently looking for creative alternate ways to organize its awards presentation while following public health guidelines.

Mostly directed by women, the 2020 edition’s top finalists are Louise Archambault’s And the Birds Rained Down (13 nominations); Monia Chokri’s A Brother’s Love (11 nominations); Sophie Derapse’s Antigone (8 nominations); Podz’s Mafia Inc. (8 nominations); Myriam Verrault’s Kuessipan (7 nominations); and Anne Émond’s Jeune Juliette (6 nominations).

For a full list 2020 finalists, please visit the official Québec Cinéma website.

Alessia Cara plays the character Jane Willoughby in the new animated Netflix feature film The Willoughbys, a delightfully dark, kid-friendly tale about true value of family.

The film’s soundtrack features original music, with Cara co-writing and performing the lead song “I Choose,” streaming now on various platforms.

In the movie – based on a children’s book by Lois Lowry – Cara’s character Jane also sings, but is constantly silenced by her strict parents. Jane and her siblings hatch a plan to create a better life for themselves, and a wild adventure ensues.

SOCAN cogratulates Alessia Cara on this rare achievement!