Meet the Staff
Michael brings to SaskMusic a diverse range of experience in the music industry, including tour booking, artist management, marketing and promotion, and sponsorship management. Dawson spent five years serving as the Artistic Director of the Culture Exchange, where he booked and/or promoted over 400 concerts a year, before moving on to become the talent buyer for a number of venues in Western Canada. He is also the Artistic Director of the Gateway Music Festival. Dawson brings to this position a wealth of hands-on industry experience. As the current lyricist and multi-instrumentalist with Library Voices, Michael has performed at countless national and international events including Liverpool Sound City, SXSW, NXNE, Pop Montreal, CMW, Ottawa Blues Fest, Virgin Music Fest, Edgefest, and the 2010 Vancouver Olympics. Library Voices was named the 2012 Sirius XM “Alternative Artists of the Year” and has been nominated for four Western Canadian Music Awards and six CBC Radio 3 Bucky Awards. Dawson also previously owned and operated Young Soul Records, part of the EMI Associated Labels Division, releasing more than a dozen albums by Saskatchewan-based artists, and has participated in numerous juries including FACTOR (The Foundation Assisting Canadian Talent on Recordings) and the Lieutenant-Governor Awards.
Communications & Operations Manager
Lorena has been with SaskMusic since ‘97, and still finds that every week brings a new and challenging experience. She loves meeting with members and helping them navigate the ever-changing industry. She has served a multitude of roles including developing workshops and events, working on the Flatland Music Festival, running juries, licensing initiatives, compilation CDs, Economic Impact Surveys and more, in addition to participating on numerous boards and committees. She currently oversees communications and office operations including the marketing of our various programs. Lorena is a professional freelance vocalist/keyboard player/songwriter and web designer with appearances at numerous national festivals, showcases, award shows, overseas tours, and national TV broadcasts. She has charted with her own original projects and is proud mama to a remarkable 6-year-old. In her spare time she is passionate about interior design and is Vice-President of the Regina Musician’s Association Local 446.
Kaelen Klypak received his Arts and Entertainment Management Diploma from Capilano University in North Vancouver and now resides in Saskatoon as the Program Manager for SaskMusic. He manages the export and professional development of Saskatchewan Music Industry Individuals.
Klypak has been actively involved in the Canadian music industry for the past 14 years as a musician, manager, production manager, promoter, and music publisher. He currently runs his own music publishing company called Kmusic Publishing and is a promoter representative for Live Nation. He is also a jury member for various music organizations and currently sits on the board for: Saskatchewan Arts Alliance, BreakOut West (Conference Committee), and 2017 Canadian Country Music Awards Host Committee.
Program & Education Coordinator
Music has had a place in Brittney’s heart since an early age. Upon graduating high school, she dabbled in film production, writing and many various other artistic ventures. She decided to pursue an education in Human Resources based on her enjoyment of working with people, and figured it was a skill set that could be transferred across many industries. She successfully completed her program and now holds a Business Certificate and Human Resources Diploma. Prior to joining SaskMusic, she was working as the Front of House Manager at Globe Theatre. She thoroughly enjoyed working in the non-profit arts industry, and when the opportunity to join SaskMusic came up, she knew it was right for her. She started out as the Administrative Assistant in our Regina office and was then promoted to the Program & Education Coordinator, which is the position she fills now. She currently sits on the Board of Directors for the Saskatchewan Country Music Association and does promotional work as part of the Dine Alone Records street team. She’s an active jurist for many organizations including the Western Canadian Music Awards, Juno awards and Music PEI Awards, to name a few.
Bethani has been working with SaskMusic for 2.5 years and is pleased to have the opportunity to work with musicians on the ground to help them reach their creative and professional goals. Bethani served two years on the Ness Creek Board of Directors, assisting with their capacity building efforts, and also established and managed the SafeNess program in 2009. In 2013, Bethani was one of 13 young leaders selected to be part of Common House Initiative’s inaugural Emerging Cultural Leadership Exchange Program, a mentorship program focused on training the next generation of creative and cultural leaders in the province, with a focus on understanding the rapidly changing cultural landscape, leadership and professional skills development, and networking with creative professionals and artists from many disciplines across the province. She is a passionate champion of the arts in Saskatchewan, and an indie theatre artist. She currently serves as the President of the Saskatchewan Playwrights Centre. In her free time she enjoys curling up with a good book, her cat Harold, and a cup of tea.
Ben Valiaho grew up working within the Regina music community and is excited to keep developing his skills and supporting Saskatchewan artists in his new position at SaskMusic. Ben first got his start working in the industry as producer and volunteer host at 91.3FM CJTR Regina Community Radio over ten years ago, and still hosts two radio shows at Regina Community Radio. Ben sits as Vice President on the Board of Regina Community Radio and also Chair of the Promotions Committee. His commitment to music continues within the halls of the University of Regina as he is in the process of finishing up a MA in Interdisciplinary Studies with a focus in live performance. While attending the university, Ben is also Research Assistant at the Interactive Media & Performances Labs teaching workshops and hosting community hours for those who want to learn how to make electronic music, scratch records, or record. Ben has been a turntablist for over ten years and hosts a monthly DJ night, as well as DJing a number of events in and around Regina.