Petra Van Nuis

Petra van Nuis, pronounced Pay-tra van Nouse, is a Chicago-based jazz singer. She has been described by Downbeat Magazine as having a “light, beautiful, and fairly delicate voice…a gift of melody and lots of rhythmic confidence.” Petra van Nuis, a Chicagoan, has been singing at the best jazz venues in the city, including the Jazz Showcase and Andy’s Jazz Club, Winter’s Jazz Club, Winter’s Jazz Club, Winter’s Jazz Club, Fitzgerald’s, City Winery and the Old Town School of Folk Music. Petra’s group has been presented by Chicago’s Department of Cultural Affairs at the Chicago Cultural Center, and Chicago Summer Dance. Petra’s Recession Seven group has been featured at Jazz City and Chicago Jazz Festival by the Jazz Institute of Chicago. Petra was interviewed by WGN Chicago for Rick Kogan’s After Hours show. Her music also featured on WBEZ’s Morning Shift with Tony Sarabia. Petra is a regular performer at jazz festivals outside of Chicago such as the Roswell Jazz Festival, the Cleveland Classic Jazz Party and Joe Boughton’s Chautauqua Jazz Party. She has performed with such well-known musicians as Nicki Parrott and Dan Barrett, as well as Scott Robinson, Scott Robinson and Scott Robinson. Petra’s latest album, 2018 CD Because We’re Night People, is a live recording featuring night-themed songs with a moody/dreamy sound. It was rated 4 stars by DownBeat Magazine. The famed Chicago pianist Dennis Luxion combines his impressionistic harmony with Petra’s lush vocals. This CD was reissued in Japan by Japanese label Muzak, in October 2018, and used in-flight music for All Nippon Airways (Japan’s largest airline), in January/February 2019. Germany’s Jazzpodium Magazine describes Petra’s 17-year musical partnership with Andy Brown as “a magical musical dialog, which can only partially describe as blind understanding.” Petra and Andy have enjoyed their romantic relationship in intimate clubs all over the country, including Shanghai Jazz (Madison NJ), the Kerrytown Concert House, Ann Arbor, MI), Night Town, Cleveland, OH), the Saugatuck Center for the Arts, Saugatuck, MI, and the Blue Wisp Jazz Club, Cincinnati, OH. The duo has been on several European tours, including to Germany (Traditional Jazz Hall Stuttgart and Mampf Frankfurt), Le Pirate, Jazz Club Neustadt and Jazz Club 77, Musikhaus Birlkehof), to the Netherland (Gorinchem Jazz Festival (Culuurschip Thor), Jazz Hall 72, Stichting Jazz Zevenbergenen) as well as to Belgium (Jazz Cafe Hopper). Andy and Petra continue to share their swinging sounds worldwide with the re-releases of their 2017 CD Lessons Lyrical as well as their 2009 CD Far Away Places, which was critically acclaimed on Japan’s Muzak label. Petra and Andy frequently add bass and drums to their duo, forming the Petra van Nuis/ Andy Brown Quartet. The quartet has performed in Chicago for the West Michigan Jazz Society (Grand Rapids), Polyrhytms(Davenport), IA), the Firefly Jazz Club Ann Arbor, MI), the Wilson Center for the Arts, Milwaukee (WI), the Detroit Institute for the Arts, and was the headliner at the 32nd Michelob Women In Jazz Festival, Dayton, OH). Petra’s Recession Seven was formed at Chicago’s Green Mill in the wake of the Great Recession. It is a Chicago-style early swing/trad band. The seven-piece ensemble includes a stellar line-up of Chicago legends including Russ Phillips, Eric Schneider, and Bob Ojeda, trombonist. Festival appearances include the 33rd Annual Chicago Jazz Festival, the 34th and 35th, 37th and 40th Annual Cedar Basin Jazz Festivals, Fitzgerald’s 29th Annual American Music Festivals, the Juvae Jazz Society’s 25th Anniversary Festivals, and the Illiana Club of Traditional Jazz’s 40th anniversary Jazz Festival. The band frequently travels to jazz societies like the Madison Jazz Society and Starr-Gennett Foundation. They also regularly perform at the Starr-Gennett Foundation’s Masters of Swing series at Cincinnati’s Xavier University. They also play at the Lafayette Jazz Club and the Indianapolis Jazz Club. The American Rag reviews the band’s 2011 live recording Live In Chicago and praises it as “a killer band that grabs you attention and doesn’t give up until they finish playing.” You might have heard some selections from Petra’s debut CD A Sweet Restrain (2006) on digital cable’s Music Choice. It regularly rotates on “Singers.”

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