Barbra Lica and Chef Diakhia Lezama bring International Flavours to Laz Restaurant

From a 16-year old auditioning for Canadian Idol to a seasoned act on the North American club and festival circuits, Barbra Lica has made her mark on the Canadian Jazz scene having performed everywhere from New York City’s legendary Birdland to Toronto’s prestigious Koerner Hall. She has also headlined at festivals across the continent including Festival International de Jazz de Montréal, Vancouver International Jazz Festival and Xerox Rochester International Jazz Festival, and opened for the likes of Christian McBride, Pat Metheny, Bob Dorough, and Terence Blanchard. Barbra brings her unique vocal stylings to the second annual Markham Jazzlicious WinterFestseries with an intimate performance at Laz Authentic Cuisine from March 5 through 9.

Barbra Lica is a JUNO-nominated, Canadian jazz and folk vocalist and songwriter of exceptional talent and has been receiving accolades for her unique vocal ability that stresses subtlety, grace, and expression. Based in Toronto, Barbra’s performances have captivated audiences all over the world with her genuine warmth and engaging stage presence. Her work spans 6 albums and has amassed millions of streams. She recently won the CMRRA “Song of the Year” for The Ghost of Me and is nominated for two Canadian Folk Music Awards. In a world where almost, everyone appears to have their public image and hashtags in order, Barbra’s latest album (2023) Imposter Syndrome, explores instead an identity still in flux. 

Laz Authentic Cuisines is a one-of-a-kind culinary establishment with a menu inspired by the idea of simple and honest cooking. Hailing from the Caribbean nation of Trinidad and Tobago, where her mother owned a catering business, Chef & Owner Diakhia Lezama was grounded in the art of cooking. Prior to her newly found full-time profession, Chef Diakhia worked in the corporate sector as a financial analyst. “I thought that my nine-to-five job was going to be what I would do for the rest of my working life,” she said. “But there came a time when I started to hate what I was doing, and I knew I could not continue.” Her specialty Jazzlicious menu is inspired by the restaurant’s signature dishes, a mouthwatering array of Caribbean flavours that include Maple Jerk Chicken, Trini Curry Snapper Fillet and Shrimp Rasta Pasta.

The Markham Jazzlicious WinterFest brings together food lovers and music enthusiasts for special evenings celebrating the culturally rich experiences that City of Markham has to offer. Leading jazz vocalist Heather Bambrick returns this year performing at Ambiyan which serves up authentic Indian cuisine by the newly appointed Executive Chef Harmeet Singh (February 27 to March 2). Barbra Lica, jazz vocalist and songwriter performs at Laz Cuisine where guests will be treated to a spectacular meal prepared by Executive Chef and Owner Diakhia Lezama (March 5 to 9). Jazzlicious WinterFest closes with performances by Canadian jazz and boogie woogie pianist Michael Kaeshammer who joins Bill Jewer, Executive Chef of Draco at the Toronto Marriott Markham (March 20 to 22).

Markham Jazzlicious WinterFest is produced by Destination Markham Corporation in collaboration with the Markham Jazz Festival, and in partnership with Cosmo MusicJAZZ.FM91Zoomer Radio and Flato Markham Theatre with funding provided by Experience Ontario and Central Counties Tourism. Matt Dusk’s appearance at Essence of Unionville at Hilton Toronto/Markham Suites Conference Centre & Spa is co-presented by Minken Employment Lawyers and Genesis Markham.

Tickets for the 2024 Markham Jazzlicious WinterFest are on sale now. For further information and to purchase series and event tickets please visit jazzlicious.ca.  

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