Moskitto Bar

  • July 1
  • 8:30 pm
  • TD Stage - Festival Village
  • Free


An only-in-Toronto blend of the music of Ukraine, the Balkans, Iraq, Algeria, Brittany, Canada and more that celebrates the coming-together of cultures, and music’s ability to unite us – and get us moving.

Moskitto Bar began in the woods at Ontario’s OM Festival, with the connection of three talented artists who discovered new musical connections while the mosquitos fed on them, the best Moskitto Bar in Canada with some different blood flavours from all over the world. Tangi Lion (Brittany, France) brings lively Celtic/Romany melodies on accordion and vocals, Ahmed Moneka (Iraq) brings deep Middle-Eastern soul influence on percussion and vocals; and Yura Rafaliuk (Ukraine) adds the Ukrainian/Balkan flavour on cimbalom and vocals. Soon thereafter, they were joined by Fethi Nadjem (Algeria), who adds a traditional North African/Algerian influence with violin, and vocals. The band continued to grow adding more and more talented musician storm all over the world, becoming a musical “family,” with Demetrios Petsalakis, from Greece on Oud, Christopher Kettlewell from Canada on upright bass, Majd Sekkar from Syria on clarinet and Naoki Hishinuma on trumpet from Japan + special guests.

The band is the personification, and the soundtrack brought to life, of multi-cultural Toronto; and of the magic that ensues when artists from different traditions come together in new contexts. Like their namesake bug, but nicer, they feed off of one other musically and gain inspiration through sharing. An ever-expanding, consciously genre-bending experiment, Moskitto Bar isn’t just more than the sum of its musical parts and a platform for musical exploration: It is proof of the magic that ensues when we focus on that which unites us rather than on what separates us. Despite the diverse backgrounds, languages, experiences, traditions, politics, and ideas of Moskitto Bar’s members, what unites the group is the deeper connection that music makes possible, and their desire to connect cultures for a better future.

In their short history, they have already graced the stages of Koerner Hall, Harbourfront Centre, the Aga Khan Museum, the Opera House, NAC and community events, festivals, and more. They’ve worked with Russian group Dobranotch, Bosnian icon Bozo Vreco and Ukranian group Burdon Folk Band. Their self titled debut album, came out in April, 2019.