24min | English | Igal Hecht
Ruben ‘Beny’ Esguerra is a multi-instrumentalist, producer, spoken word poet, arts educator, and community worker based in Toronto. Esguerra was nominated for the 2018 JUNO Awards in the World Music Album of the Year category. He was born in Bogota, Colombia, and moved to Canada in the late 80s where he began his music career. In the 90s, he joined an Afro-Colombian music orchestra. In 2008, he participated in a national poetry event The CBC Poetry Festival organized by the CBC, and has performed a spoken word piece for former Governor General Michaëlle Jean.
As a musician/producer and spoken word poet, he leads New Tradition Music, performing regularly in national and international festivals. As an arts educator, he has designed courses taught at Canadian Universities and currently facilitates interactive workshops, bringing innovative virtual and in-person drumming, storytelling, and beat-making as a healthy form of self-expression to schools across Ontario. As a community worker, he is the music director and facilitator of several community arts programs.