Photographs by Fally Alfani from I Heart Local Music
Born and raised in Lawrence, I am a musician, actress and producer. I opened my private music studio in 2015 teaching voice, guitar, and piano and currently perform in 3 bands as well as solo from time to time. I have released 3 albums of original music. My sister and I have a sister act and run a production company; we recently debuted our new show, Music of the Mind, at the Lied Center in January of the year.
I’m also involved in community outreach – working as a coach for River City Rock Camp, and sponsoring an ongoing youth concert series (Raise Your Voice LFK) that raises money for local and national charities.
My first experience with Lawrence Arts Center goes back to junior high. Growing up in Lawrence, I was lucky to have the opportunity to be a part of Summer Youth Theater. When I moved back to Lawrence almost 10 years ago, I reconnected with my roots and became involved at the Lawrence Arts Center again, first as a performer in shows such as The Nervous Set and Grotesque Arabesque: A Midnight Visit to the Grave of Poe and then as a producer and artistic director with Starhaven Rounders Cowboy Cabaret 2015/2016 and now Cabaret du Monde.
Cabaret du Monde is a celebration of music and movement from around the world; an exploration of artistic diversity from across the glove and right here in our own community. I want the audience to tap into their imagination, to be enchanted and entertained, and maybe even learn something they didn’t know before. With aerial routines, fire eating, international music, Irish Step dancers, opera, and more, I’m quite sure there will be something to delight kids of all ages.
The Rambling Roses, made up of Adiran Rees (guitar, vocals), Jennifer Bennett (ukulele, dulcimer, vocals), Katie Benyo (violin, vocals), and myself (lead vocal, guitar) will be the ‘house band’ for the show. We normally play a mix of classic country, old, and new alt-country and originals, but for this show we are performing folk songs from Denmark, Argentina, Spain, France, Taiwan, Greece, and more. We’re excited to be collaborating on a few numbers with The Lawrence Ukulele Orchestra and The Last Carnival Circus, as well. See a small clip from our practice here!
To learn more about the upcoming production of Cabaret du Monde and to buy tickets, click here!