Blending jazz, Afro-Cuban, and world rhythms, OKAN takes inspiration from the roots of Cuban music and contributes to the contemporary evolution of these powerful styles. Embracing musical traditions that historically have been dominated by men, co-leaders Elizabeth Rodriguez and Magdelys Savigne share lead vocals, and are the core composers and multi-instrumentalists who bring a fresh perspective to this Latin and world jazz fusion through their powerful lyrics and incredible musicianship.
Born in Havana, Cuba, Elizabeth Rodriguez is a classically trained violinist and hailing from Santiago de Cuba, drummer/percussionist Magdelys Savigne graduated with honours in orchestral percussion from Havana’s University of the Arts. Both are JUNO-winners as well as GRAMMY & Cubadiscos nominees for their work with the group Jane Bunnett & Maqueque, of which they are former members.
OKAN’s busy 2018 season included stops at Kultrun, Lulaworld and Toronto Jazz Festivals as well as The Mississauga Living Arts Centre and The National Arts Centre. OKAN will showcase at Mundial Montreal in November and tour Western Canada, as a quartet, in 2019-2020 under the auspices of Prairie Debut.