Long List for Sixth Annual Allan Slaight JUNO Master Class Announced - The JUNO Awards

Long List for Sixth Annual Allan Slaight JUNO Master Class Announced

This year’s program extended to include more emerging artists 

TORONTO – The Canadian Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences (CARAS) and Slaight Music today announced the long list of artists for the 2020/2021 Allan Slaight JUNO Master Class. Now in its sixth year, the program has been updated to include ten emerging Canadian artists.  These changes were made in response to satisfy a much-needed demand for ongoing support to emerging artists impacted by industry shutdowns due to the COVID-19 pandemic. 

This year saw the largest number of applications in the program’s history, and as a result, Mentorship Week, developed in partnership with Canada’s Music Incubator (CMI), has evolved into two streams. Part one, taking place this Fall, will feature a week-long digital experience tailored to the mentorship needs of ten artists selected by an industry jury. Part two of Mentorship Week, in March 2021 will include three selected artists from the long list.  2020 CBC Music Searchlight competition winner, Shawnee Kish (Welland, ON), will join the artists in both parts of this year’s Allan Slaight JUNO Master Class program.   

The 2020/2021 Allan Slaight JUNO Master Class Long List includes: 

  • Abigail Lapell – Toronto, ON
  • Biawanna – Vancouver, BC
  • Command Sisters – Spruce Grove, AB
  • DESIIRE – Toronto, ON
  • Desirée Dawson – White Rock, BC
  • JJ Shiplett – Calgary, AB
  • Laur Elle – Medicine Hat, AB
  • MONOWHALES – Toronto, ON
  • Myles Castello – Scarborough, ON
  • Sara Diamond – Montreal, QC

Left to right: Abigail Lapell, Biawanna, Command Sisters, DESIIRE, Desirée Dawson, JJ Shiplett, Laur Elle, MONOWHALES, Myles Castello, Sara Diamond, Shawnee Kish

We are very excited and proud to be taking the Allan Slaight JUNO Master Class to new heights by including more emerging artists to this year’s program,said Allan Reid, President & CEO, CARAS/The JUNO Awards & MusiCounts. This evolution is an incredible opportunity for us, along with Slaight Music and Canada’s Music Incubator, to help more artists from across the country achieve their goals of a successful career in the music industry.” 

“Now more than ever emerging artists need our support and I would like to commend the CARAS team for extending this program to include even more talent,” said Gary Slaight, President & CEO, Slaight Communications.  “We continue to see the impact this program has on those that have participated and we are thrilled to continue our commitment in elevating the next generation of Canadian artists.”

The Allan Slaight JUNO Master Class program is renowned for offering emerging artists with opportunities to hone their craft and further develop their music careers. For the first time in the program’s history, TD Bank Group will be offering a Financial Education session during Mentorship Week, to help provide financial insight and advice to artists on topics such as Starting & Operating a Small Business to Personal Finance, that will help artists succeed.  

Program participants of the 2017/2018 Allan Slaight JUNO Master Class, Neon Dreams, recently won their first JUNO Award for Breakthrough Group of the Year sponsored by FACTOR, The Government of Canada, and Canada’s Private Radio Broadcasters. 

For promotional graphics, suggested social copy, logos and more reference our Digital Toolkit.


Official JUNO Awards website: www.junoawards.ca 

Allan Slaight JUNO Master Class website: www.junomasterclass.ca

Digital Toolkit

Social Media:

The JUNO Awards: @TheJUNOAwards / @TheJUNOAwards / @TheJUNOAwards 

 #JUNOS / #JUNOMasterClass

Slaight Music: @SlaightMusic / @SlaightMusic@SlaightMusic

Canada’s Music Incubator: @CMincubator / @CMIncubator/ @CMIncubator

Exclusive Broadcast and Content Partner: 

CARAS acknowledges the financial support of FACTOR, the Government of Canada, and Canada’s Private Radio Broadcasters.

Lead Partner: TD Bank Group

Funding Partners: The Province of Ontario and the City of Toronto.

About Allan Slaight JUNO Master Class

The Allan Slaight JUNO Master Class is an initiative that provides the crucial tools to help artists develop their careers, build their own sustainable business and become ‘JUNO ready’. The ‘Master Class’ includes a week-long customized artist development program co-developed with Canada’s Music Incubator at Coalition Music. This development program provides hands-on mentoring, networking and collaboration opportunities.


The Canadian Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences/L’académie canadienne des arts et des sciences de l’enregistrement (CARAS) is a not-for-profit organization created to preserve and enhance the Canadian music industry and to contribute toward higher artistic and industry standards. CARAS’ mandate is comprised of four key pillars: Educate through our music education charity MusiCounts programs and initiatives, Develop emerging artists through mentorship and development programs, Celebrate Canadian artists with year-round JUNO Awards showcasing, and Honour music industry icons through the Canadian Music Hall of Fame. For more information on The 50th Annual JUNO Awards or The Canadian Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences (CARAS) please visit junoawards.ca.

About Allan Slaight

A pioneer of rock and roll, Allan Slaight parlayed his entrepreneurial flair with his knowledge of radio to create Canada’s largest privately owned multimedia company, Standard Broadcasting Corporation Limited.

Born in 1931, Allan hosted his own radio program, Spins and Needles, a late night jazz program, at age 16 at CHAB in Moose Jaw, Saskatchewan. He moved to Edmonton in 1950, working his way up the ladder being appointed in 1956 as the National Sales Manager at CHED. There he came to the attention Allan Waters, owner of CHUM Radio in Toronto, who hired Allan to turn around the fortunes of his struggling station. Allan’s programming, promotions, and business acumen propelled CHUM into a household name. 

Allan left the station in 1966 to coordinate programming and sales of Radio Caroline, the infamous pirate radio station. He returned to Canada in 1967, to become the President and General Manager of Stephens and Towndrow.

In 1970, Allan established Slaight Communications and acquired radio stations CFGM in Toronto and CFOX in Montreal. In 1977, Allan launched a new rock and roll radio station, CILQ-FM, known as Q107, in Toronto. In 1985, Slaight Communications sold CFGM and Q107, and purchased Standard Broadcasting Corporation Limited from Conrad Black. Under Allan’s leadership, Standard Broadcasting and Standard Radio grew from seven radio stations to a national network of over fifty. In 2007, the Slaight’s sold Standard Broadcasting to Astral Media.

Radio was not Allan’s only passion. He served as a trustee of Women’s College Hospital (1978- 1982), a director of the United Way of Greater Toronto (1979-1987), director of the Shaw Festival (1982-1988), a governor of York University (1986-1987), and a director of the Festival of Festival (1989-1993).

An inductee into the Broadcast Hall of Fame (1997), the recipient of an Honorary Doctor of Commerce from Ryerson Polytechnic University (2000), appointed a Member of the Order of Canada (2001), the recipient of the Walt Grealis Special Achievement Award (2005) for his contribution to the growth and development of the Canadian music industry, Allan has also maintained a lifelong interest in conjuring.

About Slaight Music

Slaight Music was started in 2011 with a mandate to support the Canadian music community through a variety of initiatives and to develop Canadian talent via strategic partnerships with industry peers.

About Canada’s Music Incubator
Canada’s Music Incubator (CMI) is a Toronto-based national not-for-profit organization specializing in professional development and ongoing mentorship for artists, managers, and music companies. Launched in 2012, CMI supports over 1,000 music entrepreneurs, across all genres, build long-term careers and sustainable businesses, and has provided 10,000+ hours of professional development programs and one-on-one mentorship. Working with private and community partners, CMI’s Live Events department has curated 460+ shows and paid $880,000+ directly to artists since 2015. CMI also advocates on behalf of music sector infrastructure development and creative entrepreneurship education in high schools. For more information, please visit: canadasmusicincubator.com

For more information on the Allan Slaight JUNO Master Class please contact:  Elyssa Macri, CARAS/The JUNO Awards, [email protected], 647.361.3181