Biography - Raesha Sirois


The Face of the Festival

Does one have to be born in the West Indies to have Carnival Fever? It certainly cannot hurt!

Raesha Sirois, born in St. James, Trinidad, immigrated to Canada in 1970 and grew up in Scarborough, Ontario. Although she enjoyed a Canadian environment and learned to embrace winter out on the slopes with her snowboard, Trinidadian culture was a great part of her upbringing. This included eating her mother’s Creole cooking, listening to Soca, pan and chutney music, and regular month-long trips down to Trinidad to visit relatives in the summer.
Raesha played clarinet in the Toronto parang group, La Petite Musicale in the late 80s and joined Silhouettes Steel orchestra to play steel pan in 1994.  She is the only known 9-bass player in Canada to own her own set of pans and currently plays with Pan Fantasy Steel band, led by 2015 Harry Jerome award winner, Wendy Jones.
A full-time dental hygienist for 22 years, Raesha works out of 3 clinics, including The Art of Dentistry in Yorkville. Her 3 children, aged 24, 13 and 7 have all traveled to the country of her birth and are forced to watch their mother play pan and play Mas in the parade. Favourite food for all of them? Dhalpourie roti with curry chicken!
Raesha regularly attends Carnival in Trinidad, with Panorama Finals and Jouvert being her highlights. Here in Toronto, she plays Mas in the Scotiabank Caribbean Carnival Parade, competes in Pan Alive and models Mas costumes – this year with Tribal Knights, D’Regulars and the new Durham Mas .
Spare time is hard to find with this lady, but she manages to scrounge up some to weight-train, garden, teach her kids piano (she is a classically-trained pianist) and travel the world. You can often find Raesha commuting to and from work on her Kawasaki Ninja.


Stephen Weir’s Note. The Face Of The Festival Photograph is downloadable from the Festival website. Media is free to use the photograph. Please Credit  Photograph by Anthony Berot  NVP Media Group. Model Make-Up by  Sue Ajodhia ( Motives Make Up)  Melinda Siegal - Assistant


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