From sultry sambas to a French nightclub, take a musical trip around the world with Pink Martini founders
October 1, 2020
They have performed on concert stages around the world and sold more than 3 million albums. Now Thomas Lauderdale and China Forbes from the band Pink Martini bring an evening of music and conversation exclusively for Moss Arts Center patrons on Friday, Oct. 9, at 7:30 p.m.
Always a sold-out party, Pink Martini is inspired by the romantic Hollywood musicals of the 1940s and '50s. The ensemble’s arrangements of Latin music, cabaret, and cinema scores come together in a sophisticated yet utterly unpretentious sound that has built a worldwide cult following.
For “A Piano, a Song, and a Pink Martini,” lead singer Forbes joins founding pianist Lauderdale for an online bespoke performance taking audience members on a musical trip around the world, from sultry sambas to a French nightclub, followed by an audience discussion moderated by Margaret Lawrence, Moss Arts Center director of programming. The duo is only performing a very few of these concerts this year, making this performance a rare opportunity.
Ticketholders have access to the performance as it happens, and for seven days following the event.
Lauderdale founded the “little orchestra” Pink Martini in 1994 to provide beautiful and inclusive musical soundtracks for political fundraisers for such causes as civil rights, affordable housing, the environment, libraries, public broadcasting, education, and parks. A year later, he asked his former Harvard classmate Forbes to join the ensemble. They began to write songs together, and their first song, “Sympathique (Je ne veux pas travailler),” became an overnight sensation in France.
“Pink Martini is a rollicking around-the-world musical adventure,” said Lauderdale. “If the United Nations had a house band in 1962, hopefully we’d be that band.”
Pink Martini has performed its multilingual repertoire on concert stages and with symphony orchestras throughout Europe, Asia, Greece, Turkey, the Middle East, Northern Africa, Australia, New Zealand, South America, and North America. The ensemble has released 11 studio albums.
Exclusive to the Moss Arts Center and designed specifically to be presented online, the “HomeStage” series is a curated collection of virtual performances offering opportunities to engage directly with artists. Guaranteed a front row seat, attendees get up close and personal with “HomeStage” series artists during these distinct performances and conversations, which include moderated discussions.
Tickets are $10 for general public and free for Virginia Tech students. Tickets can be purchased online; at the Moss Arts Center's box office, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Wednesday through Friday; or by calling 540-231-5300 during box office hours.
All “HomeStage” series events are free for Virginia Tech students.