Go ahead, distract me!

Last week I was practicing for a upcoming solo appearance and I thought I would try out different ways of playing through distraction.

I love listening to Podcasts and Podcast playlist (http://www.cbc.ca/radio/podcastplaylist) is one of my favourites. So.. I opened it up on the stereo in my studio and turned it up so that I could here myself play and hear my metronome but could still also follow the program.

Why would I do this to myself? Isn’t it tough enough to concentrate without making it harder? Aren’t you supposed to get rid of every distraction and focus?

Well… yes you are but have you ever noticed that when you’re performing all kinds of things become a distraction? It’s a lot like the great advice I read here from the Bulletproof musician:

How to Make the Most of a Dress Rehearsal

Yes, I absolutely try to emulate a performance before it happens.

  • If I’m standing for a solo – I practice it standing
  • Before the concert I play in the shoes I’m going to wear
  • I try out the dress/outfit (is the skirt too short when I sit? Does it gets caught in my keys? Does (heavens forbid) the top work itself down while I play?!)

But it’s hard to emulate that person in the front row snoring or coughing or leaving suddenly…. so I also try to learn to focus through distractions.

Sometimes i also discover a new podcast too!

Katie

Happy Hour Sound Bytes 2017-2018

Welcome to the 2017/18 Series! Once again we are offering five entertaining concerts designed to stimulate your appetite for music as well as relax you for the weekend. As with every year, artists from the Kingston area and guests from further away share their talent and passion in five concerts encompassing: vocal, piano, jazz, string and wind music.

From October to May, you can experience the joy of live performance in a variety of genres – for the same incredible price as last year! $50.00 for all 5 concerts

October 13, 2017A Duo, A Duo! a concert of jazz standards and more with Chris Alfano (clarinet/sax), and Dave Barton (guitar)

November 10, 201720th Century guitar – Classic pieces from the new golden age of guitar  Jeff Hanlon – Classical Guitar

As a soloist and chamber musician, Jeff Hanlon has performed at venues and festivals across Canada and the United States, including the Banff Centre for the Arts, the Royal Conservatory of Music in Toronto, Yale University’s New Music New Haven series and the Faculty Artist Series of Queen’s University. He has recorded for PBS radio and for CBC Radio 2, and has given workshops and masterclasses for guitarists at York University, the Canadian Guitar Festival and the Federation of Canadian Music Festivals (FCMF).

Back by popular demand we again break for winter so that those of you who escape the cold can still enjoy our series in the spring!

March 16, 2018Who’s horning in?

Katie and Chris are joined by Bill Egnatoff, flute and Cory VanAllen, horn for a concert of music for flute, horn, clarinet and bassoon. Enjoy charming selections from Mozart, Gambaro and Rossini

April 27, 2018 – Georgette Fry & friends

1994 Juno nominee and veteran of the Canadian music scene, blues and jazz artist, Georgette Fry, has dedicated many hours of her 35-year career towards raising funds for and awareness of the needs of women and children in crisis. In 2017 she was awarded a meritorious Service medal by Canada’s Governor General for her work with her non-reading, non-auditioning “pop” choir (Shout Sister!), specifically aimed at women whose so-called musical limitations may have robbed them of prior opportunities to sing in a group setting.

Join us in welcoming her to the series in a concert that will give you anything but the blues!

May 18, 2018Appealing to our ‘Bass’ Chris and Katie are joined by our favourite pianist, Michel to play music for clarinet (maybe some bass clarinet too), piano, bassoon  and even some contrabassoon!

Series information

All concerts will be at 5:00 pm at St. Mark’s Lutheran Church, 263 Victoria Street

Your $50 subscription gets you entry into all 5 concerts

Single concert admission is $15 at the door. Children shorter than a bassoon are admitted free!

Reserve your key tag today – email Chris at alfano@cogeco.ca or Katie at legerek@queensu.ca

Happy Hour Sound Bytes 2016-2017

hhsb2016-2017Welcome to the 2016/17 Series! Once again we are offering five entertaining concerts designed to stimulate your appetite for music as well as relax you for the weekend. As with every year, artists from the Kingston area and guests from further away share their talent and passion in five concerts encompassing: vocal, piano, jazz, and wind music.

From October to May, you can experience the joy of live performance in a variety of genres – for one incredible price!

October 21stThe word is LOVE!  a concert of tunes with ‘Love’ in the title.  How many can you name? Chris Alfano (clarinet), Paul Clifford (bass) and new to the series, Paul Morrison (piano)

November 25thMichel! Solo! Our favourite collaborative pianist Michel Szczesniak will play a few of his favourite works for solo piano.

Back by popular demand we again break for winter so that those of you who escape the cold can still enjoy our series in the spring!

March 17thKeep Calm and Harp On! What’s better than a Harp to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day! The very talented Charlene Wallace joins the series playing the instrument of the angels.

April 21stMore strings attached! Katie and Chris are joined by strings to perform great classical standards for strings with bassoon and strings with clarinet.

May 19thMeet the concerto! Chris and Katie are joined by our favourite pianist posing as an entire orchestra! We’ll be talking about what goes into preparing to perform a concerto with an orchestra when you don’t actually have an orchestra at your fingertips… as well as playing of course!

Series information

All concerts will be at 5:00 pm at St. Mark’s Lutheran Church, 263 Victoria Street

Your $50 subscription gets you entry into all 5 concerts

Single concert admission is $15 at the door. Children shorter than a bassoon are admitted free!

Reserve your key tag today – email Chris at alfano@cogeco.ca or Katie at legerek@queensu.ca

Happy Hour Sound Bytes 2015-2016

martini glass logoWelcome to the 2015/16 Series! This year we are offering five entertaining concerts designed to stimulate your appetite for music as well as relax you for the weekend. As with every year, artists from the Kingston area and guests from further away share their talent and passion in five concerts encompassing: vocal, piano, jazz, and wind music.

From October to may, you can experience the joy of live performance in a variety of genres – for one incredible price!

October 23rd – For the first time we are featuring the Swingmasters with their awesome little big-band sound. Join Chris Alfano, Blair Yarranton, Jon Stewart, Rich Bannard, Ian Fitze, and   Andy Sparling   for a fun-filled evening of great music.

November 27th – get in touch with your Classical Side with music performed by Michel Szczesniak, piano; Katie Legere, bassoon; and Chris Alfano, clarinet.

This year we break for winter so that those of you who escape the cold can still enjoy our series in the spring!

March 4th – It’s soooo romantic! Sue Graff with her wonderfully rich voice joins Chris Alfano, Dave Barton, Rick Bannard and Paul Clifford for some tuneful Jazz Standards.

April 29th – Rachel (flute) and Cynthia Tormann (piano) present a concert with a difference – amid the beautiful sounds of the flute, you can ask Rachel about what it’s like to grow up in a highly musical household, why she picked the flute (and not the cello) and any other questions you have.

May 27th – Tango Tango Tango … brace yourself for the most exciting of dance music with Chris, Katie and Ian Fitze.

Series information

All concerts will be at 5:00 pm at St. Mark’s Lutheran Church, 263 Victoria Street

Your $50 subscription gets you entry into all 5 concerts

Single concert admission is $15 at the door. New this year: Children shorter than a bassoon are admitted free!

Reserve your key tag today – email Chris at alfano@cogeco.ca or Katie at legerek@queensu.ca

Happy Hour Sound Bytes 2014-2015

martini glass logoWelcome to the 2014/15 Series! Once again we offer a potpourri of six entertaining concerts designed to stimulate your appetite for music as well as relax you for the weekend. As with every year, artists from the Kingston area and guests from further away share their talent and passion in six concerts encompassing: vocal, piano, jazz, and wind music.

From early October to mid-April, you can experience the joy of live performance in a variety of genres – for one incredible price!

October 3rd – Enjoy your favourite jazz standards performed by special guest Gene Smith, Trombone. Gene, formerly of the Woody Herman band and other great ensembles, is joined by Kingston’s Dave Barton, guitar; Paul Clifford, bass; and Chris Alfano clarinet.

November 14th – get in touch with your Romantic side with works by Schumann, Grovelez and more performed by Michel Szczesniak, piano; Katie Legere, bassoon; and Chris Alfano, clarinet.

January 9th – Sorrento is back by popular demand! Ian Fitze, accordion and Chris Alfano, clarinet perform old favourites that will have you singing along. The tunes will be picked by you in an audience lottery!

February 20th – Welcome to the opera! Come hear a collection of instrumental and vocal music from light to serious … but not too serious!

March 6th – Tribute to the great jazz clarinet and vibraphone pairings such as Goodman/Hampton, Shaw/Roland, DeFranco/Gibbs and Daniels/Burton.  Chris Alfano is again joined by Greg Runions, vibes; Paul Clifford, bass; and Rich Bannard, drums.

April 17th – Kingston Classics Trio closes out the season with light classics for flute, bassoon featuring Chris, Katie and Bill Egnatoff.

Series information

All concerts will be at 5:00 pm at St. Mark’s Lutheran Church, 263 Victoria Street

Your $50 subscription gets you 6 concerts and an entry to win a performance by the group of your choice

Single concert admission is $10 at the door.

Reserve your button today – email Chris at alfano@cogeco.ca or Katie at legerek@queensu.ca

Sorrento

Imagine yourself in the Italian countryside and you can almost hear the sweet sounds of your favourite songs played on clarinet and accordion.

Chris Alfano and Ian Fitze will serenade you with such classics as Spanish Eyes and Days of Wine and Roses.

Nothing could possibly be more appropriate or more romantic for your anniversary reception or afternoon garden party.

Kingston Classics Trio

The warm sound of a wind trio adds just that extra bit of class to your event. Kingston Classics Trio

We provide a wide variety of music suitable for every occasion. Classical and baroque favourites from Vivaldi and Haydn to selections from operas such as Carmen and the Barber of Seville are just a small portion of our repertoire.

Requests may be arranged and suggestions are accommodated whenever possible.

Listen to  samples of us…

medley of tunes from My fair lady, arranged by Chris Alfano

Bach 3 part invention No.1

Bizet, Seguidilla from Carmen

Mozart Divertimento

 

Bill Egnatoff, flute
Chris Alfano, flute and clarinet
Katie Legere, bassoon

Rates*

The rate for this trio for the first hour is $350.00. The rate for each proceeding hour is between $150 and $225.00 depending on the requests and function of the group

* rates apply to engagements withing the Kingston area. Contact us to get a quote for out of town engagements.

Time For Two

When something small is all you need, it’s “Time for Two”.

Available for weddings, receptions, parties and concerts we have music for every occasion. Our repertoire includes everything from the lovely ‘Simple Gifts’ to ‘Pachelbel’s Canon’ to … well you call the tune!

Requests may be arranged and suggestions are accommodated whenever possible.

Katie Legere, bassoon & Chris Alfano, clarinet and flute

Rates*:

$250.00 for the first hour and $ 100.00 for each proceeding hour

Samples:

Jesu Joy of man’s Desiring

Pachelbel Canon

Simple Gifts

Hornpipe in D

La Rejouissance

Let Me Call You Sweetheart

All about us:

Katie Legere performs with the Kingston Symphony, which she joined in 1993, on bassoon, contrabassoon and saxophone. She performed with the Toronto Philharmonia from 1995 to 2002 as well as the National Arts Centre Orchestra, Toronto Symphony, Le Violons de Roy, Ottawa Symphony, National Academy Orchestra, Windsor Symphony, and Ohio Light Opera Orchestra.

Performance highlights include:

  • 2014 – Happy Hour Sound Bytes series – bassoon
  • 2013, summer, Thousand Islands Playhouse, The (Post) Mistress by Thompson Highway, Bassoon and Tenor Sax
  • 2012 – 2013 Happy Hour Sound Bytes series, founder and performer: www.livemusickingston.ca
  • 2011 Faculty Artist Series presents, Bassoon Extravaganza, with bassoonists Katie Legere, Joelle Amar, Jo Ann Simpson and Isabelle Lépine.
  • 2009 Recital with Chris Alfano and Michel Szczesniak, Kingston Public library (Fund for Scholarly Research and Creative Work).
  • 2008 60th Birthday celebration concert for Marjan Mozetich.
  • 2002 Dietter Concerto for Two Bassoons, with Susan Graves and the Kingston Symphony Orchestra.
  • 2001 Concert of contemporary Canadian music for bassoon and string orchestra.

Chris Alfano is an active musician in the Eastern Ontario area playing in a variety of genres. He have performed classical music and jazz/pop music on clarinet and saxophones as part of the Kingston Symphony and National Arts Centre Orchestra as well as with the Kingston Classics Trio.

Performance highlights include:

  • 2013, summer, Thousand Islands Playhouse, She Loves Me, Flute, piccolo, clarinet,
  • 2013-2014 – Happy Hour Sound Bytes series – clarinet
  • 2013, summer, Thousand Islands Playhouse, The 25 Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee, Flute, piccolo, clarinet, sax
  • 2013: initiated the Swingmasters Ballroom Orchestra for a fundraiser for the Kingston Symphony and at the Kingston Garrison Ball
  • 2012 February:  original music written for clarinet, piano, violin and cello by pianist/composer David Braid and the Land’s End Ensemble in Calgary for two concerts and a recording session in that city .

* rates apply to engagements withing the Kingston area. Contact us to get a quote for out of town engagements.

 

Swingmasters

Click play to listen to the Swingmasters

Whether you’re hosting your office get-together, throwing a lavish party, getting married or celebrating another special event be sure to include The Swingmasters … the very best in musical entertainment

swingmasters-croppedStarted by Al and Jim Rolls of Hamilton in the early ’50’s, Swingmasters is an 7-9 piece ’40’s “big band” style dance band comprised of Alto Sax, Tenor Sax, Trumpet, Trombone, Rhythm Section, and Vocals. With additional personnel we become a classic dance orchestra with strings.

We play Swing, Bossa Nova, Light Rock, Waltz and Polka styles always suitable for dancing.

This group is designed for dancing and a big crowd and is ideal for large office Parties and large elegant weddings where only live music will do.

Swingmasters ballroom OrchestraSwingmasters Ballroom Orchestra

This is a 22 piece dance orchestra that can perform everything from Swing Music to Strauss Waltzes like a real Hotel Orchestra of Yester Year. It is a full big band with 8 strings for a lush sound that cannot be surpassed for class and elegance by any other group.

Chris Alfano, Leader

Rates*:

Swingmasters
The rate for this group is $900.00 (7 piece band) for the first hour and $400.00 for each hour proceeding.

Swingmasters ballroom Orchestra
Rates are negotiated.

 

* rates apply to engagements withing the Kingston area. Contact us to get a quote for out of town engagements.

Chris Alfano Trio

What could be better than the sounds of smooth jazz for your cocktail hour or corporate get together.

Together with his colleagues from the Kingston and surrounding area Chris Alfano will entertain and delight you with their interpretation of the standards of the jazz genre.

Chris plays clarinet, flute, alto, tenor and soprano sax with ease and virtuosity.

Watch Chris, joined by Rich Bannard, Paul Clifford and Greg Runions to perform a tribute to Benny Goodman on the Island Star:

Rates*

The rate for each of this trio for the first hour is $325.00. The rate for each proceeding hour is between $150 and $225.00 depending on the requests and function of the group as well as special arrangements and fees for travel if out of town. The jazz trio can be augmented with a drummer for dancing. The rate is $400.00 for the first hour and $225.00 for additional hour.

A duo of Tenor Sax/Clarinet and Guitar/Piano can be utilized for a rate of $200.00 for the first hour and $100.00 for each subsequent hour.

* rates apply to engagements withing the Kingston area. Contact us to get a quote for out of town engagements.