Jessica McMann is a Calgary-based Cree musician, contemporary dancer and choreographer. She is also a classically trained flutist, with a Bachelor of Music from the University of Calgary. Her research focus has been contemporary music, jazz, and improvisation. She is currently pursuing her MFA in unceded Coast Salish territory. Her recent compositions and soundscapes explore Indigenous identity and history. Jessica's skills enable her to contribute as a side musician, soloist or ensemble member.
She has been dancing fancy shawl, jingle and hoop dance for 17 years, and has had the opportunity to present contemporary and traditional work at festivals across western Canada, and tour northern Europe. Currently her personal experience, Two-Spirit identity, Cree and Blackfoot language, and the strength of Indigenous women guide her current contemporary dance work. She works regularly with Elijah Wells, a Blackfoot animator to bring the stories of Transgender, Two-Spirit and Queer persons alive.
Here recent artist-in-residence was with the Coastal Jazz Society, resulting in 10 new compositions performed at the Vancouver International Jazz Festival in June 2018. Her work has been shown at AlterNative: IndigiQueer (2017), IndigeDIV (2017), Talking Stick Festival (Vancouver 2012, 2013) Kootenay Cultural Festival (2012, 2015, 2016) Fairy Tales Film Festival (2012), ASTAM; Cree Festival (2012), Coastal First Nations Dance Festival (2011,2012, 2014, 2017, 2018) Vancouver Queer Film Festival (2011), Q the Arts Festival (2011), 7a*11d (2010). Her most recent large work was shown at the Urban Shaman Gallery in Winnipeg as part of "The 60's Scoop; A place between". She has also toured in Sweden, Netherlands, and Belgium. She has created soundtracks for the ITWE Collective, performed with the Ambrose University Chamber Orchestra and the Foothills Philharmonic Orchestra, and was a guest musician for Arcade Fire at the Junos and regularly with Laura Vinson and the Free Spirit . She also is a dance artist in Calgary schools.
She is a Laureate of the Hnatyshyn Foundation REVEAL Indigenous Art Awards. CV available upon request.