Toronto Kirtan Community

Toronto Kirtan Community
Kirtan Forever!

~ Connecting & Creating Community for Kirtan Lovers in Toronto and Beyond ~

ALL known kirtans are posted below on this website's Kirtan Calendar, on the left side above the list of links.

To receive a weekly newsletter listing kirtan events or to have your kirtan posted, please email

On FaceBook: 'TorontoKirtanCommunity' group: I post the upcoming week's kirtans, as well as interesting articles, videos, photos, links about events and artists.

On Facebook's 'TorontoKirtanCommunity' page: links and information about kirtan and musicians are posted.



Kirtan opens the heart and stills the mind. It is the yoga practice of ecstatic chanting. Through repeating the Divine Names in Sanskrit, the mind is cleared of worry, doubt, fear and all limiting concepts. The joy of peace and infinite love is given to the practitioner, and transmitted through the world by chanting. This is the practice of bhakti yoga or the yoga of devotion. - contributed by Pat Sandford

“Music that is saturated with soul force is the real universal music, understandable by all hearts.” — Paramahansa Yogananda

“Kirtan is for all people. There are no experts, no beginners. The practice itself is the teacher, guiding us to ourselves. Kirtan allows us to enter into a mystery world—a world where all the logic of our minds, all the condition and learning are left outside. And in this mystery, we create a temple inside of our hearts, a place of refuge, a place of love, a place of just being.” —Jai Uttal

"Chanting is a way of getting in touch with yourself. It's an opening of the heart and letting go of the mind and thoughts. It deepens the channel of grace, and it's a way of being present in the moment." -- Krishna Das

"You start doing chanting as technique. You start to sing ‘Shri Ram, Jai Ram, Jai Jai Ram.’ You start thinking it means, Honorable Ram, Hail Ram, Hail Hail Ram. Then after an hour you stop thinking about all of that and you are just singing it. You are realizing the aesthetic of the music and how beautiful it is. Then after a while it starts to go deeper until your heart is just singing, it’s singing from inside you. Then there’s a point where true bhakti starts- where dualism ends and you become like the chant. You are in a space where it’s not emotional anymore. It’s moved into the deeper, intuitive quality of love. Touching that love leaves you with trust in the method and trust in where the method takes you—trust in the Beloved and trust in how you get there." –Ram Dass

"If we know anything about a path at all, it's only because of the Great ones that have gone before us. Out of their love and kindness, they have left some footprints for us to follow. So, in the same way that they wish for us, we wish that all beings everywhere, including ourselves, be safe, be happy, have good health, and enough to eat. And may we all live at ease of heart with whatever comes to us in life."
- Kirtan closing prayer by Krishna Das

Monday, March 28, 2011

HRIDAYA YOGA Kirtan & Meditation


click on poster for larger view

Moksha Yoga & Kirtan with 905ers Jessica & Deena Robertson - LILA

Join Moksha Yoga cofounders and kirtan singing sensations, Jessica Robertson and Deena Robertson of the music collective Lila, for a weekend of asana and kirtan to help you awaken to a life of peace, joy, and freedom.

Moksha Yoga takes us through a series of strengthening and toning postures for detoxifying the body. All yoga classes this weekend are cotaught by Jessica and Deena so that beginners receive the attention they need, and those with an established yoga practice can deepen their understanding of yoga asana. There are also ample kirtan (chanting) sessions to calm the mind and open the heart.

Through our yoga and chanting practice, as well as guided meditation, mindfulness eating, and personal singing assignments, we discover how to:

Practice moksha inspired yoga
Use bija mantras to awaken new energy and begin new healthy life patterns
Open our heart to accept ourself and others
Learn to listen deeply and discover our true self (svadyaya)
Open to people at all levels of experience in yoga, this workshop is perfect for those wanting to try yoga or chanting for the first time or to deepen their practice.

Jessica Robertson, cofounder of Moksha Yoga and the New Leaf Yoga Foundation, has taught more than 300 teachers at the Yoga Alliance 500-hour level. She is coauthor of The Little Moksha Yoga Book and sings in kirtans internationally.

Deena Robertson is cofounder of Moksha Yoga London and Moksha Yoga Danforth. She sings internationally in kirtans with her sister Jessica and their group Lila. Their first CD is Myth and Myrrh.


click on posters for larger view

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Sat April 9 2011 Mike Cohen, Brenda McMorrow & Lea Longo

top 2 photos taken by Pat Sandford

Saturday, April 9 · 8:00pm - 10:30pm

These three Kirtan artists are excited to reunite after a successful collaboration at Bhakti Fest 2010 in Joshua Tree, California.

You will be transported and transformed through the integration of Shiva and Shakti, the Divine Masculine and Feminine.

Start time is 8pm.

Held at Yoga Sanctuary, in the Danforth location - #95 Danforth Avenue, Toronto, ON at the Broadview Subway Stop.

Tickets are $20 advance and $25 at door. Purchase advance tickets online here at http://torontokirtancommun

For additional info contact Pat Sandford at

Yoga Sanctuary - Danforth location, 4th Floor
95 Danforth Avenue
Toronto, ONTARIO
(Broadview subway stop)


Sat April 2, 2011 @ 7pm Jim Gelcer and friends kirtan @ Jaya Yoga Centre, 121 Willowdale Ave. Suite 302, Toronto

Jim Gelcer is an award-winning and internationally acclaimed musician and composer. His love of music and yoga led him organically into the world of kirtan, where he is now in demand as a kirtan leader and has just released his first kirtan album, Bhagavan. Jim artfully combines traditional kirtan with modern influences like jazz and world music into a unique blend unlike anything else you've heard. What happens when you combine a deeply devotional soul with a sophisticated pop music sensibility? At a live kirtan with Jim you may hear mashups of mantras with just about anything from Leonard Cohen to Bob Marley, Bill Withers, or even Black Eyed Peas.

Jim will be accompanied by 4 musicians! Kathleen Gillis, Susan Vandewater, Debbie Ingham, and Anne Marie Boudreau. Jaya Yoga does have some pillows to sit on, however feel free to bring your backjack or yoga mat.
Bring your friends
and family....everyone is welcome!!
They look forward to seeing everyone there and enjoying the music, talent, and mantra together as a community of students, teachers and musicians!

647-352-JAYA (5292)


Tuesday, March 1, 2011

THE KIRTANIYAS' last weekend in Toronto in March 2011

Om Bolo Kirtaniyas Ki! Jai!!
The Kirtaniyas on Saturday March 5 2011
@ The Downward Dog Yoga Centre in Toronto
photo courtesy of Rishi Kumar

Saturday March 5 2011 @ Toronto's Downward Dog

Saturday March 5 2011 @ Toronto's Downward Dog

Friday March 4, 2011 @ 5 Elements Brampton

Friday March 4, 2011 @ 5 Elements Brampton

Friday March 4, 2011: 8-10pm in BRAMPTON: The KIRTANIYAS
1st hour Prana Flow Yoga taught by Michelle Cormack pranafied with The Kirtaniyas live music
2nd hour Kirtan/Chanting
$15 in advance/$18 at the door
For more info and tickets, contact 5 Elements Yoga & Pilates Brampton at 905-451-9642 or at

Saturday, March 5, 2011 @ 8:00pm in TORONTO:
$ 20 + tax - In Advance (Before March 5th)
$ 25 + tax - Regular Price

THE KIRTANIYAS: Born to and raised in Krishna culture of song, dance, philosophy and devotion, The Kirtaniyas consist of four energetic and multi-talented singers-musicians from various backgrounds who live and breathe kirtan with a passion. Let's chant, dance and experience the uplifting experiece of Kirtan Yoga together! Come and taste authentic Gaudiya kirtan with The Kirtaniyas. Hear the glorious sound of mrdanga drum and savour the sweet sound of harmonium. Let your spirit soar with pure sound vibration of potent mantras!


“With great talent and exuberance, The Kirtaniyas rock the house with their devotional chanting.”
- Wah

“The Kirtaniyas are bright shining stars of the kirtan revolution. Their energy is fresh and uplifting and their music is absolutely intoxicating. They are my favourite kirtan band around!” – Govindas, Bhakti Yoga Shala

“Vijay is my new favorite drummer. Sweet, joyful, funky, slamming, he’s got all the colors I like to paint with.
I wanted him to tour with me, but he was already booked!” – Dave Stringer

“Clearly the torch is being passed to Vijay and The Kirtaniyas, giving me hope that a whole new generation will continue to fall in love with the transformational path of Bhakti Yoga and devotional chant. I LOVE what they do and encourage any Kirtan aficionados to come experience their magic!” – Shiva Baum, Executive Producer of Krishna Das’ “Breath Of The Heart” and Triloka Records’ Head Of A&R

“The Kirtaniyas, led by Vijay, are my favourite devotional chanters of all time.” - Sura, Temple Bhajan Band

Listen. Can you hear it?

A melody starts, wistful and longing. It sweeps the crowd. The singer closes his eyes and his song bursts forth. It is wrenched from his heart, it seems. We call out in response. It is an easy mantra. Cymbals clash and punctuate a rhythm. Drums begin to throb and thunder.
They say the drum beat represents the heartbeat of God maddened by love.

That’s The Kirtaniyas—four talented performers—all of them singers and musicians. These energetic, multi-talented artists come from a rich, colorful background. They grew up in a Krishna culture of song, dance, philosophy and devotion. At the heart of it all, there was always Kirtan. It owned their passion before they could talk. Restlessly tapping out drum beats till they got on their mothers’ nerves; dreamily humming tunes; studying songs and lyrics and language; learning to play instruments—they were never more passionate about anything.

They live by Kirtan, they relish it day after day, and now they are inviting you to join them:

“How would you tell someone what sugar tastes like when they have never tasted it? How can we describe kirtan? Come and taste it, relish its sweetness for yourself.”