Meet The Team
Director of Strategy and Innovation
I am a visual artist and a dedicated advocate for creative, relational approaches to working with others, particularly with persons living with memory loss.
In my undergraduate degree, I studied Illustration and graphic design at OCAD University. I later completed a Master's in Recreation and Leisure at the University of Waterloo, focusing on arts-based and relational approaches to working with others. My thesis focused on friendship in care contexts and used arts-based methods to explore the topic of friendship with people living and working in long-term care. Coupled with a deep understanding of relational theories, I also have a decade of practical experience working creatively with persons living with dementia, many of those years as an artist with The Bitove Method team!
Let's connect! Contact Katia with any questions or inquiries about The Bitove Method:
Jenn is a Nia (Creative Movement) instructor who also runs a private practice in Speech-Language Pathology, specializing in acquired brain injury. She holds a Nia Black Belt certification and earned her Master’s of Health Science at the University of Toronto. Jennifer's creative arts work has included supporting individuals through The Royal Conservatory's Living Through the Arts Program, The Alzheimer's Society of Toronto, Baycrest's Memory-Link Program, The Hospital for Sick Children’s Eating Disorders Day Treatment Program, New Outlook, The Residences on Bayview and the University Health Network's Dotsa Bitove Wellness Academy.
Robin is a singer and songwriter based in Toronto. She leads the Polaris-nominated band Bernice, who have released 3 full length albums and tour internationally, and is a very active member of Toronto's diverse musical community.
Robin has been working with a relational caring approach for several years and has a huge interest in using the voice, and song, to connect, laugh and generally feel good. Robin firmly believes that everyone can sing - and should, as often as possible.
In addition to her own music, Robin has worked several times with the Toronto Dance Theatre to develop new projects, has led songwriting workshops with Toronto's Access Alliance through their phone in "ring & sing" for older adults, and regularly uses her voice as both a Voice Over artist and a backup singer for artists such as Martha Wainwright and Bahamas. She brings this wealth of experience and passion to her work with the Bitove Method.
Cassandra is a visual artist and fashion designer with a studio and storefront based out of the Junction area in Toronto. With a BFA in Drawing & Painting, Cassandra loves to paint portraits and abstracts. She developed her fashion business in her final years at OCAD.
Working with clients on bespoke creations over the years, Cassandra is an advocate of co-creating and sharing her knowledge and passion about working with your hands to create beautiful and functional pieces from scratch.
Having also been an art instructor teaching students to paint, Cassandra finds joy in sharing the experience of learning through the arts with all who are interested.
Robin is a Certified Arts Therapist, writer, singer and stand up artist. She studied classical singing at the Royal Conservatory of Music, graduated with a music degree, performed as a children’s entertainer before going back to school to study expressive arts and psychotherapy. Her professional associations include working at the Sunnybrook Health Science Center, Holland Bloorview Kids Rehab, L’Arche Toronto, Addiction Rehabilitation Toronto, Dr. Jay’s Grief Centre and UHN’s Dotsa Bitove Wellness Academy.
Warm and welcoming, Robin’s programs are known for their gentle humour, playfully exploring everyday experiences with golden oldie songs, improvisation, poetry and dance.
Steve Koven is a composer, performer, producer, educator and film maker.
As an educator, Steve has been teaching in the Faculty of Music at Toronto’ s York University since 2003, teaching Contemporary Improvisation and Jazz Piano Studies. In addition, Steve teaches in the Music Department at Centennial College in Toronto. He holds a Masters in Music Composition and has presented master classes and clinics throughout Canada, China, Japan, Colombia, Barbados, Bahamas, USA and Mexico.
Juanna is both a musician (primarily a violinist and singer) and a Certified Music Therapist, as well as a member in good standing with the Canadian
Association of Music Therapists. She is also registered and in good standing with the College of Registered Psychotherapists of Ontario in the Qualifying category.
Juanna graduated with a Bachelor of Music Therapy degree from Wilfrid Laurier University as well as a Master of Education degree from the Ontario Institute for Studies in Education at the University of Toronto.
Juanna cherishes and values the stories that are shared in musical pieces and songs. She connects deeply with the music she creates and to which she listens, and she enjoys music discussions and learning what makes a song meaningful to other music makers and listeners.
Kathleen Le Roux
Kathleen is an experienced theatre artist and professional arts-in-health practitioner specializing in relational applications of drama, clown and improvisation for elders in care. She is delighted to bring her creative talents to the virtual world of the Bitove Method, where co-creation, playfulness and community-building are at the heart of its approach to education and care.
Taylor Kurta is an award-winning singer/songwriter and PhD student at the University of Waterloo. In 2013 Taylor was awarded as the inaugural winner of Canada’s Walk of Fame/RBC Emerging Artist Mentorship Program. From there, Taylor received a bachelor’s degree in Music Therapy and completed her master’s degree at the University of Toronto in Music and Health Sciences.
Taylor has worked in long-term care as a music therapist where she created an in-house music studio for people and their families to create music together. In her PhD, Taylor is writing songs collaboratively with people living with dementia to challenge stigma.
Simon is an international award winning songwriter, musician, producer, teacher and meditator. He has two Grammys with UK band Soul II Soul, one being the global hit “Back To Life”.
He brings 7 years experience in the field of music and dementia care, working at The Dotsa Bitove Wellness Academy from its opening. Simon helped make and also composed all the music for the film Music Is Life about music and its role in relational caring at the Academy.
Susee’s friendly and positive energy thrives on making connections with people. As a collaborator and artist, she brings her life experiences as a needle art teacher, functional adult exercise and chair yoga instructor. She enjoys embracing the smile muscles and may get a little laughter yoga out of you and having fun with games or activities that engage all folks in her presence.
Susee loves the bookends of young ones and older adults and the meaning they hold for each other.Susee has led programs and activities at the Dotsa Bitove Wellness Academy, Toronto Public Library, Alzheimer’s Society, Community Wellness Centres, Adult Living buildings and out in the open beauty of nature!
Jacqueline "aka" Jack-of-all-trades works as a music video director, editor, musician, and choreographer. She loves choreographing movement-based pieces, and has studied movement throughout her many years of art school. Her classes will focus on how movement connects to the senses and highlights different experiences in life.
Hello, I am a graduate of the University of Toronto having received a Bachelor of Science degree in
Physiotherapy. I practiced as a physiotherapist in Canada and New Jersey for 20 years. After living
outside of Canada for 16 years in New Jersey and Belgium, I returned to my home town of Toronto
and decided it was time to pursue a new career path.
I volunteered in a few different settings, one of
them was the Dotsa Bitove Wellness Academy, where I was introduced to the philosophy of
relational caring. After volunteering at the Academy for over a year, I was lucky enough to join the
team in the role of Program Assistant for 4 years. It proved to be one of the most rewarding
opportunities of my life. I am excited to continue this exploration of the arts with the Bitove Method
team. I hope you can join us, and I look forward to meeting you online or in person!