Vocalist, composer, teacher, and bandleader Raquel Marina Skilich (b. 2000) is recognized for her adaptability, competence, and originality. Based in Toronto, Ontario, she is an emerging artist optimistic in building a music career to connect with others on a deeper level creatively and authentically.
Raquel grew up studying classical piano music and has a strong background in choral singing. She completed a Bachelor’s degree in Jazz Comprehensive at the University of Toronto and graduated with honours (2022). Raquel has had the pleasure of studying under notable Canadian jazz musicians including Laura Swankey, Alex Samaras, Andrew Downing, Steve Wallace, and Terry Promane. Additionally, she participated in the intensive summer program entitled SIM: School for Improvisational Music (2022) where she has not only been able to learn from greats such as Michael Mayo, but has been able to expand the boundaries of her vocal technique, improvising, and composing. With a diverse background in music, she is looking forward to sharing her musical artistry and versatility with her colleagues and peers as well as expanding her audience.
Raquel often performs a variety of her own arrangements and compositions. You can find her performing around the Greater Toronto Area. She has led bands at some of Ontario’s most admirable venues such as the Jazz Bistro, Drom Taberna, the Emmet Ray, the Rex Hotel Jazz and Blues Bar, and more. She recently had the opportunity to share the stage with established jazz luminaries, the most recent two being Benny Bennack III and Russell Hall.
Raquel has composed and arranged pieces for several ensembles at the University of Toronto, including Vocal Jazz led by Christine Duncan. Currently, she is working on arranging for high schools, colleges, and other large ensembles in Toronto.