Performing at the Wein Experimental Theater at the Regina A. Quick Center was much different for Shana Tucker than her usual performances onstage in Cirque du Soleil.

Tucker, a cellist, singer and songwriter who has been performing in Cirque du Soleil since 2012, performed at Fairfield on Friday, March 27.

In describing her time playing for Cirque du Soleil, Tucker said, “It’s like being in high school free period, you know? [It’s like] the high school lunchroom because people are very funny and they don’t take themselves too seriously, so it’s a really positive work environment. ”

The theater was set up to look like a jazz club, lending to the calm and informal atmosphere of the concert.

Small round tables were spread around the theatre for audience members to sit at. The theater was dimly lit with candles at each table.

Tucker performed an assortment of songs from her new release of her “SHiNE” album, a re-release of an independently-released album of the same name.

Some songs performed included “November,” “Shine” and “No Get Back.”

Tucker also performed “Tom’s Diner” by Suzanne Vega, asking an audience member to help by playing maracas for her.

The audience became involved in the performance, clapping along and laughing at Tucker’s many quips and comments.

“I might need you guys to help me with this one; I’m not sure if I’ll be able to remember all of the words,” she said laughingly.

Getting more serious in between songs, Tucker poured her heart out to the audience, stating, “I went to school for cello performance, but my profession, my calling if I may, is storytelling through songwriting.”

The performance, however, was not all about Tucker. She made a point to step away for a little while, allowing her band to take center stage.

“I know you all came to see Shana Tucker. But I also know that I wouldn’t be here if it weren’t for [my band]” she said.

Tucker, who has known that she wanted to be a professional musician since college, describes herself as a “chamber soul” artist. She blends classical chamber music with a soulful vibe.

When asked where she gets inspiration from, Tucker said that she finds it in many different things. She may find it by giving voice to certain characters in stories through music.

She also finds inspiration in her personal life.

“I listen to a lot of jazz, I listen to a lot of new soul and new R&B. I listen to a lot of old funk. My inspiration’s all over the place.”

The best part of being a professional singer, according to Tucker, is being able to connect and collaborate with other musicians and have musical conversations which bring the songs alive to her.

“That kind of exchange is so … I don’t even know how to describe it. It’s something I hope I never take for granted. It’s similar in gratification, but not the same as performing for people and experiencing this invisible energy when they are appreciative of what’s going on or when something I’m singing about, they respond to like ‘Oh my God, how did you know?,’” she said.

“To be able to speak a truth through music that somebody else might be thinking or experiencing, but doesn’t have the same tools to articulate it musically, and can know that I’m kind of representing them, it makes me feel like all the work that we do to present or to practice or to prepare is not for naught.”

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-- Junior | Co-News Editor -- English: Education

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