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Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Top 10 of 2010

When you look back, things are always better... Here are my top 10 performance moments of 2010:

10. Jingle Eve
This was my first gig here in Orlando, FL - outside of my work with Disney. It took place down in the Ivanhoe Village and it was a great opportunity for me to have a look in to what happens here in the various parts of Orlando.


9. Alison and Sal's Wedding Reception, Starling Lane Winery
A beautiful couple asked me to play at their wedding reception located at the Starling Lane Winery, in West Saanich, BC. It was pouring rain when I arrived, and the plan was for me to play once their vows and commitment had been announced. I did this, with the help of the catering company, and played within the gorgeous cathedral/atrium like structure - which the ceremony was held in.
I then made my way to the tasting area, where all the wedding guests hung out as well to keep dry from the rain. 
It was a lot of fun playing next to the barrels of wine, smelling it in the air, and performing amongst the conversations, laughter and accidental smashing of wine glasses.


8. Alex and I at The Fort Cafe
It is always a pleasure to create music with my friend Alex. He has a great mind, is very easy to collaborate and perform with, a fantastic person, and a lovely friend.
At this gig, we were on the line up for Accordion Noir's "An Evening of Pleasing Squeezing" held at The Fort Cafe, in Victoria BC.
It was an intimate setting, and a nice little venue for Alex and I to perform our experimental accordion/synth set up.

Here is a video from that performance:




7. Victoria Pride Parade
It was my goal from the start with my gypsy band back in Victoria BC, to play in the Victoria Pride Parade, and so when the stars aligned and we were asked to play in the parade I was more then excited. Not only did we play in it, but we lead the parade as well!
Getting 8 musicians to jump in to the backs of Kabuki Kabs isn't easy, but having them wear no pants IS!
 


6. Opening for Tom Fun Orchestra
I had the opportunity to have my gypsy band and I open for the amazing Tom Fun Orchestra, at Hermann's Jazz Club in Victoria BC in the middle of August 2010. This was a big deal to me because when I had first started my gypsy band, Tom Fun was a band that I admired and sought out to be similar to. I loved their exciting energy that is felt in their music, and aimed to have that same "party" feel in our performances.
The band members of Tom Fun are good people. I hope to play with them again :)





5. The Great Giffoni on Mayne Island
Performing with The Great Giffoni opened my eyes to the realization that I LOVE performing for children. I would look forward to the next birthday party, reception, festival that David Gifford would call me up and see if I was available for.
The combination of The Great Giffoni's charming magic show, Princess Muffin, and the funny little kids would always brighten my day.
His Magic show headlined the Mayne Island Fall Fair, and I had never been to Mayne Island. The trip was lovely, the beaches there are great, and I had a lovely time at the Teddy Bear's Tea Party :)



4. Eastern Bloc Party @ Logan's Pub
This show was HUGE. Literally. I had put together this show, and had asked both The Bolting Brassicas and The Carnival Band to be a part of it. All together there was about 40 musicians involved in this gig.
The audience was amazing, and made the night what it was. This night of massive alternative marching bands was a great end to the summer in Victoria BC, and a great last gig with my band before I moved to Florida.



3. TD Vancouver International Jazz Festival
Guilt & Company, located in Vancouver's Historic Gastown, was a great venue for some of the many performances happening during the TD Vancouver International Jazz Festival during the end of June of 2010.
I had the pleasure of being a part of this festival, and getting to play with Sam Davidson (Brasstronauts), Colin Cowan (Analog Bell Service), Ali Siadat (Mother Mother), and Bobby Siadat (You Say Party and Gang Violence).
A big THANK YOU to Guilt & Company for asking me to be a part of these two great nights of music, for being able to play with those fantastic musicians, and having the opportunity to be a part of the TD Vancouver International Jazz Festival.



2. Victoria Celebrates Canada Day
My gypsy band and I played the main stage at the annual Canada Day event this past July 1st, 2010. Being a native Victorian and having grown up in the Garden City I had been going to the Canada Day festivities every year. To have the opportunity to play for your own city, at this grand event, is kind of a big deal!
Looking out from the stage to see all of the inner harbour, the Empress Hotel, Government Street, and having 40,000 people looking back at you felt GREAT!
I had a blast, I had great mics on my accordion (thanks to my friend Alan Zisman) and the sound and production team were fantastic to work with.  It was great performance and a huge accomplishment!


1. Walt Disney World: The Ziti Sisters
Well here we are, in Orlando FL. Seriously? Pinch me.
I get to dance around with little princesses and mini-Minnie Mouse's all day, and play my accordion while I do it. Okay!
This has been one crazy ride so far, stressful to go from submitting footage, auditioning through Skype, to filling out Visa applications, to packing up and selling off unnecessary belongings, saying goodbye, and coming to a strange new land where everything feels backwards. This is the life of a gypsy accordionist.





Looking ahead at 2011:

I stopped making New Year's resolutions a long time ago. I make resolutions and goals more then once a year, and review them regularly. I keep up with them, create new ones, finish old ones, and make big decisions all year. I recommend you do the same. Keep a day timer, make "To do" lists, sync your Google Calendar with your Blackberry, and keep yourself on track! Be aware of what you're asking for from the universe, you never know where you might end up!

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