Celebrating love, life and freedom through all forms of art. Inside Toronto’s Magic Oven on Queen Street East that is the mission of the spiritually uplifting second annual Give Thanks event.

Staying true to the eclectic and unique nature of the show, the sets are divided into themes mirroring the four elements of nature. In the first set, Earth, artist Gregory Serieaux-Halls helps summon the energy of unity and free expression by allowing others to freestyle over his guitar playing. Throughout the other sets, artists like Qi, YHW, Lancelot Buckner, Xolisa Jerome, Black Moon, Travis Blackman and HaiYah Movement showcase the depths and layers of diversity that dwells in Toronto’s entertainment scene.

“With my artwork I want people to feel empowered to action.” – Yandea Hai El

“With my artwork I want people to feel empowered to action,” says Yandea Hai El, member of HaiYah Movement, who is exhibiting her artwork and celebrating her birthday with family and friends at the event. “Whether it’s loving harder or trying to help someone else get free within themselves.” Her friends Randell Adjei and Jordon Veira, both poets and entrepreneurs, keep the crowd attentive between sets with their comedic and poetic genius.

After a performance by the soul-moving poet Ohm, Yandea is in tears as she explains how magical and powerful the night is for her. To cap off the festivities Yandea brings out her homemade vegan cake to share with family and friends and kick off the after party.

A higher movement no doubt.

Words By. Emma Kombora + Photos By. Mitzy Blair