By Tanya Phillipps
Toronto Raptors Assistant Coach and Community Ambassador, Jamaal Magloire hosted his Foundation’s annual holiday gala on last at The Tuesday at Don on the Danforth. ‘Mystique’ was an evening of magic, music and diverse BIPOC talent, with proceeds supporting hundreds of GTA families in underserved communities this holiday season.
“Our event is always a party with a purpose,” said Magloire. “The holidays are such a special time, especially for children and youth, but for many families in underserved communities right here in the GTA, food insecurity is a critical issue and an ongoing struggle. With everyone’s generous support, we are making an impact to spread some joy and help combat food insecurity.”
Celebrity guests showed their support of the Scarborough native and his mission. Toronto Raptors’ Juancho Hernangomez and members of the coaching staff were in attendance as well as artist Andrea Bolley, also known as 6Mom. Devo Brown, TV host and personality from Breakfast Television served as the emcee.
Savio Joseph, a Canada’s Got Talent finalist, headlined “Mystique” with a mesmerizing live magic and mind reading show that left guests in awe. Toronto rising R&B artist, Chris Oday and his band performed a live soulful set, and DJ 3 Keys Music had guests dancing to old skool, reggae and of course, soca. Attendees enjoyed festive signature cocktails and a savoury array of delicious and festive appetizers curated by Hassan Adenola, founder of Chef Hassan’s Kitchen.
“I am so appreciative to see this community come out each year and giving their time, talents and resources to provide families with a healthy and happy holiday,” said Magloire. “It is important to be intentional about creating opportunities to highlight and celebrate diverse young artists right here in our backyard. We have a responsibility to help one another and lift each other up.”
Longstanding partner Longo’s once again teamed up with the Jamaal Magloire Foundation as a matching partner. Together, Longo’s and the community successfully raised more than $25,000 for the Foundation, which will go towards providing gift cards for 300 families to shop with dignity, purchasing what is most needed at home.
In a touching moment, Jamaal spoke about his late father Garth, who had a lifelong passion for music. To continue his legacy, the Foundation established the Garth Magloire Music Bursary in 2021 to provide financial support to BIPOC youth pursuing their post-secondary education in music. The 2022 awardees were unveiled at ‘Mystique’ to the surprise of the winners. Janelle Yausif is a gifted opera singer on the rise, and Spencer Persaud is a multi-talented musical artist also studying sound engineering.
“My foundation is rooted in the belief that youth deserve the chance to dream,” added Magloire. “It was important for the guests to see exactly where their funds are going, who is being impacted. Janelle and Spencer are both outstanding awardees and very deserving of this award in honour of my dad. I cannot wait to see where this journey of music will take them.”