Gyal Dem Fiyah: Rookz
Kiana “Rookz” Eastmond is the founder and director of Sandbox Studios, a recording studio at Carlaw and Lake Shore that holds artist support and accessibility central within its mandate. Rookz has been firmly embedded in Toronto’s music scene for some time, working in everything from management to artist development. Because of that hands-on perspective, she was able to see gaps in the ways in which artists were supported and guided on their journeys through their musical careers. When launching Sandbox, Rookz made financial accessibility fundamental to its operation, knowing how restrictive the high cost of studio time can be for emerging artists. That’s a crucial resource to many folks, still weighing out their musical talents and dreams against the backdrop of what’s in the bank.
A masculine-of-centre lesbian in control of her own business, Rookz has also opened the door to others like herself who may find it daunting to enter the male-dominated/gender-homogenous environments of recording studios. Even with “fear-factor” being low, the opportunities afforded to, and acceptance of, visibly queer folk in such spaces are limited. Rookz says later for all that.
Most recently, Rookz was appointed the new ED of Manifesto. This is huge.
Today @Manifesto_TO is excited to welcome our new ED, Kiana ‘Rookz’ Eastmond to the team! @rookzie is a true creative leader, entrepreneur, storyteller, uplifter, animator and agitator. We can’t wait to see what she builds with all of you. pic.twitter.com/jLIQqlPHef— Manifesto (@Manifesto_TO) November 6, 2018
Visit sandboxstudios.ca to see follow what Rookz and her team are up to… which always seems to be a lot.