Five minutes with… Two Pianos

Published: Wednesday 29th November 2017 by Courtney Farrow

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An exhilarating performance by Two Pianos is coming to Junction in Goole. We spoke with David Barton, Hull-born pianist, to find out more.

Can you tell us a little bit more about your show and what people can expect?

Two Pianos – Rock ‘n’ Roll Experience pretty much does what it says on the tin.

We are a five-piece high energy rock ‘n’ roll band performing our own arrangements of some of the greatest hits that shaped the 1950s and 60s rock ‘n’ roll music scene.

We both bring something slightly different to the stage with our performances. Alan’s style has been likened to that of Jerry Lee Lewis with a country twist, and people can always rely on his dry sense of humour to keep them entertained. My style has more of the blues and boogie-woogie feel often likened to Jools Holland and Dr. John.

Your show is quite unique. How did the idea to use two pianos in this way come about?

We are two pianists and singers who got together to share our passion for rock ‘n’ roll music and celebrate some of the best hits that shaped not only the 1950s music scene but the music we hear today.

We both have had our own careers aside from the Two Pianos show, performing in various other bands and with different musicians. I invited Alan to join as a guest at one of my shows in 2013 and it pretty much went from there. We said it would be great to stage a proper show with both pianos and a band performing the music that we share a passion for.

The name did take a while to choose, but we agreed to keep it simple and give the best idea of what the show is based around. There is a slight age gap between myself and Alan, me being younger, and this does often surprise people that someone so young has an interest in a style of music that is over six decades old. But I love the music and Alan’s passion and experience has definitely influenced me.

We are very much like brothers on and off stage and have such fun performing together. Every night is a joy for both of us and is never too much the same.

Why do you think people love the sound of 1950s & 60s rock ‘n’ roll?

There’s so much variety within the music and so many great artists from that era such as Buddy Holly, Elvis, Jerry Lee Lewis, Chuck Berry and the late great Fats Domino – the list goes on. We can play up-tempo songs from the likes of Jerry Lee Lewis and then change the whole mood and perform a ballad by Buddy Holly or Elvis.

When we created the show, we wanted it to be different and stand out from other theatre rock ‘n’ roll shows. By doing this, we felt we had to bring our own style and arrangements to the songs and put our own ‘Two Pianos stamp’ on it. We felt we wanted to add a piece of our personality to the performance and people certainly get to know us as the show goes on – or that at least I’m the quiet one and Alan is the loud one!

Lastly, why should people come along to see Two Pianos?

People who come to see the show say that it wasn’t completely what they were expecting, but were so glad they came to see it. It’s great to see a mix of ages at our shows, both children and the people who lived their teenage years and grew up with this music, all come along to join in on the fun.

We want people to come and have a great night out with us, get up and dance if they want or just simply enjoy the music.

You can catch Two Pianos at Junction, Goole on Friday 1 December. For more information and to purchase tickets, please visit the Hull 2017 website.

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Published: Wednesday 29th November 2017 by Courtney Farrow

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