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Simona Smirnova: "Unapologetic" (Lithuania/NYC)

Ticket Information

  • General admission: $16.58 each ($15.00 + $1.58 fees)
  • Door Sales: $20.00 each
  • Buy Tickets


  • Thu 29 Feb 2024, 7:00pm


All Ages Licensed

Phone Sales

Simona Smirnova is returning to New Zealand for her fifth tour "Unapologetic". A Lithuanian born and NYC-based composer, vocalist and kanklės player will be performing at Bedlam & Squalor with local Wellington jazz talents on February 29, 2024. Simona plays an authentic Lithuanian folk zither, called kanklės and she is the only kanklės player in the United States! Simona presents this unique instrument across the globe in theaters, jazz clubs, communities and festivals. Simona’s genre-bending style has a unique theatrical flavor and uncanny vocal improvisation techniques. She deftly implements chamber music, kanklės and folkloric chants into foundations of jazz, pop and electronic music. Always on the road, always charming and smiling, Simona is a true artistic soul that effervescently represents diversity and passion for arts.

Simona Smirnova has released four albums of her original music and published a sheet music book of her original compositions. Smirnova's debut album "A Hunger Artist" (2017) based on Franz Kafka's short story by the same title. Smirnova’s second album, Joan of Arc, for String Quartet, is an original composition written as a soundtrack for the classic Carl Dreyer silent film The Passion of Joan of Arc (1928). The album is a cinematic landscape of chamber pop, jazz and folklore. Simona's third album "Bird Language" which was released in April of 2022. The record combines jazz and Lithuanian folk music written for jazz quartet, string quartet, vocal ensemble, zither and saxophone. Simona's latest album "Kanklės in New York" (2023) presents Lithuanian traditional zither - kanklės in two formats; an album and sheet music book. The book and album contains 14 original pieces written for kanklės solo, and kanklės and voice.

Classically trained on kanklės, Smirnova earned her BA in jazz vocals at the Lithuanian Academy of Music and Theater. Shortly after receiving the European Touring Scholarship, she moved to the United States to study at Berklee College of Music where she earned a degree in Contemporary Composition and Production. Simona is a very active member of the musician community around the globe; she is an Alumna of the prestigious Berklee College of Music, a mentor at Berklee Alumni Mentorship program, she is a voting member of Grammy Recording Academy, a mentor at Grammy U program, a composer member of New York Composers Circle (NYCC) and the Ambassador for the Global Stage Hollywood Film Festival.

This one off Wellington show will feature some local legends!

Hikurangi Schaverien-Kaa (drums),
Ayrton Foote (keys),
Johnny Lawrence (bass)

A short documentary about Simona:

Latest music video filmed in New Zealand, Bethells Beach:

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