Kat Lewis tells me about her motivation behind The Sweethearts of Swing. With the Derry launch this coming Friday night, March 10th, at The Belfray Inn, Derry, I was keen to hear just why Kat is so keen to be part of this genre of music.
"I've loved the music of the Andrews Sisters, ever since I was introduced to it in choir practice with Chattanooga Choo Choo", she told me. " I then went and borrowed a cassette tape from the library and played it over and over until I had to give it back. I just loved the blend of the harmonies and the sound of the instruments.
After I graduated from the Royal Academy of Music, I tried to set up something like this in England but the timing wasn't right for us and it just fell apart. I carried on with very mainstream work doing TV, Musical Theater and straight theater but I decided to 'retire' at the start of 2016. I just felt that it was time for me to take creative control of what I was doing and I wanted to reawaken my passion for the arts. It was time to take this ambition off the shelf and form a three piece girl group. I put a post on Facebook and Naomi was straight in there wanting to know about it. We'd worked on panto before so I knew that Naomi has a fantastic voice and is a total perfectionist, like myself!!!. Then
Orla, who I've been close friends with for years, was on the phone to me and asked how things were going and if we were still looking for a third person. Naomi and I were absolutely delighted, as we had assumed that the drive from Derry for rehearsals would be asking too much, but Orla is one dedicated woman! So from there we started putting the music together and arranging the harmonies and we started doing a few gigs to test the waters. Everything was going well, so we did the Belfast launch in November, which sold out! We couldn't believe it! The response from people has been better than we ever could have hoped for. So many people got in touch to tell us how special the night was, that it wasn't like any other night, that the music had made them feel like they'd stepped back in time and the main theme was how much enjoyment everyone had gotten out of it. This is the main reason why I love to perform. The feeling of knowing that you're making a positive impact on someone's day or week is absolutely brilliant, because that, to me, is what life is all about really."
This show is really sounding like something special. This rock chick and trad fan is very looking forward to a night with a difference this coming Friday. Tickets are priced at just £12 on the night or £10 presale. Sounds like a real bargain. Doors open at 8pm and the show starts at 9pm. I'm certainly hoping to have a 'swinging' time...are you?