Monday Jun 06 2022


6:00 pm - 9:00 pm





Twilight Jazz and Blooz Series Part 2: New York in Niagara featuring the Benny Benack III Quartet

📅 DATE: Monday, June 6, 2022
🕑 TIME: 6:00 pm – 9:00 pm (Doors open at 5:00 pm)
🏟️ VENUE: Spirit in Niagara Distillery
🗺️ ADDRESS: 458 Lakeshore Rd, Niagara-on-the-Lake, ON
💵 PRICE: Early Bird: $49 + HST; At the Door: $59; Musicians/Arts Workers/Students: $23 + HST - Buy Now!
🎟️ SEASON PASS: 5 Shows: $169 + HST - Buy Now!

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Join New York City based trumpeter and vocal star Benny Benack III for an evening of fiery trumpet vernacular, exciting showmanship, and vocal jazz standards performed in Benny Benack III ’s signature post-Sinatra mold.

Fresh off the success of his sophomore album A lot of Living to Do (feat. special guests Christian McBride and Veronica Swift) and the worldwide reach of his appearances on Emmet Cohen’s Live From Emmet’s Place, catch Benny Benack III performing for the first time in Ontario, Canada – backed by pianist Anthony D’Alessandro, JUNO winning drummer Ernesto Cervini and JUNO winning bassist Neil Swainson.

The evening’s performance will feature:

Opening for the Benny Benack III Quartet will be Kircona.

Tickets are non-refundable. Artists and venues are subject to change.


  • Guests who will be purchasing food at the venue must select “Yes” when prompted during ticket purchase. Those who will be consuming beverages only (or nothing at all) must select “No”, and will be seated in the theatre selection.
  • Once you have purchased your ticket online a copy of the receipt will be sent to you. you do not need to print this receipt since we will have your name on our guest list as a paid ticket holder.
  • Price does not include food but food IS available on site. Please check out the delicious menu HERE
  • Tables are reserved for Guests who will be dining. Regular seating is provided for guests who prefer to just watch the show and purchase a beverage. If you will be dining during the show please contact Darlene ( or call at 289-259-4997) so that we can let the kitchen know to be seated at a table.

Please visit our Health and Safety page for updates on our current guidelines.

Season Pass holders must contact Darlene ( or call at 289-259-4997) before the show’s date to reserve their seating. Please arrive to claim your seat by 5:45PM, otherwise the seat will be made available for sale for General Admission.

For more details, please email Darlene at

Hosted by Spirit in Niagara Distillery



By age 30, trumpeter and singer Benny Benack III has proven to be that rarest of talents: not only a fiery trumpet player with a stirring command of the postbop trumpet vernacular in the vein of Kenny Dorham and Freddie Hubbard, but also a singer with a sly, mature, naturally expressive delivery in the post-Sinatra mold, performing standards and his own astute songs with a thrilling sense of showmanship. His superb intonation and bracing virtuosity enable him to handle astounding feats of originally composed vocalese (complex solos with written lyrics). On top of it all, he’s a highly capable pianist as well.

Benny performs internationally as an Emcee/Host for Postmodern Jukebox, the vintage music collective famed for canny old-school covers of modern pop. In early 2020 he released A Lot of Livin’ to Do, the follow-up to his well-received 2017 debut One of a Kind. This sophomore effort, richly varied in mood and brimming with bop inflection, features bassist extraordinaire and Jazz ambassador Christian McBride (whose Grammy award winning Big Band frequently calls upon Benny in the trumpet section) and drummer/producer Ulysses Owens, Jr., as well as the radiant Takeshi Ohbayashi on piano and Rhodes.

Alongside his global touring as a straight-ahead/contemporary bandleader, Benny has appeared as a trumpet soloist in more commercial circles alongside Josh Groban, Ben Folds, fashion icon Isaac Mizrahi, Ann Hampton Callaway and more. He’s been featured at Birdland, Jazz @ Lincoln Center, Mezzrow, Bemelmans Bar at the Carlyle and other leading New York venues, and has also been a special guest with the Pittsburgh Symphony Pops Orchestra, the Columbus Jazz Orchestra and the Minsk Philharmonic Orchestra. He made his television debut in NBC’s short-lived, SNL-inspired variety show “Maya & Marty” playing in the in-studio band led by acclaimed bassist & Broadway arranger Charlie Rosen.


Anthony D’Alessandro is a pianist, composer, arranger, and bandleader based in Toronto, Ontario. His own bands have been showcased in many notable venues and festivals across Ontario including the Toronto Summer Music Festival, the Jazz Sudbury Festival, the Barrie Jazz and Blues Festival, the Jazz Bistro, and the Rex Hotel Jazz and Blues Bar, among others. He often performs alongside many of Canada’s great jazz musicians including Neil Swainson, Terry Clarke, Reg Schwager, Steve Wallace, Kevin Turcotte, Pat Collins, and Ernesto Cervini.

Anthony’s music has also taken him throughout the United States and Europe including performances at festivals in Iowa, Florida, and composition at the Casalmaggiore International Music Festival in Casalmaggiore, Italy.

In November 2020, Anthony released a four-part solo piano suite entitled ‘Reflections’, that was supported by the CBC and the Canada Council for the Arts. He holds a Bachelor of Music degree in Jazz Piano Performance from the University of Toronto.


JUNO Award winner Ernesto Cervini is a sought-after drummer, composer and bandleader and an influential presence on Canada’s modern jazz scene and beyond. He has documented his vision with the Ernesto Cervini Quartet (featuring Joel Frahm), the innovative sextet Turboprop, numerous co- led trio projects including MEM3, Myriad3 and TuneTown, and also the quartet Tetrahedron, featuring acclaimed guitarist Nir Felder, electric bassist Rich Brown and alto saxophonist Luis Deniz.

In all these settings, as J.D. Considine of JazzTimes has written, Cervini “drums like someone who’s an arranger at heart, carefully placing each accent for maximum melodic impact.” He’s been cited by Modern Drummer for his old-school knowledge and feel in the spirit of Art Blakey and Billy Higgins, yet credited by Musicweb International as a maker of music “grounded in the language of hard bop but not confined by it.”

Born and raised in Toronto, Cervini graduated from the Royal Conservatory of Music with degrees in classical piano and clarinet performance before focusing his energies behind the drum kit. After completing his bachelor’s degree at the University of Toronto, he began a four- year stint in New York in 2003, earning a master’s degree from the Manhattan School of Music, forming deep connections with the highest-echelon musicians and performing on some of the world’s hippest, most prestigious stages. Returning to Toronto in 2007, he has cemented his status as one of the leading champions of the local scene and Canadian musicians more broadly.

Cervini has received a JUNO Award for his 2019 Turboprop release Abundance as well as JUNO nominations for his 2017 Turboprop release Rev and The Where by his co-led trio Myriad3 (featuring pianist Chris Donnelly and bassist Dan Fortin). His 2019 release There From Here with the co-led trio TuneTown (Kelly Jefferson, tenor; Artie Roth, bass) hit #1 on the Canadian !earshot charts and his newest release, Tetrahedron debuted at #1 on the Canadian Jazz iTunes charts. As a sideman, Ernesto’s studio experience includes JUNO-nominated albums with the Tara Davidson Quintet and Carn Davidson Nine, as well as a forthcoming date from the Joel Frahm Trio called The Bright Side, among much else. He is also a member of Idioteque, which dares to take on Radiohead’s most challenging material and all the classic hits, pus B-sides and rarities.


Neil Swainson was born in Victoria, British Columbia, Canada on November 15, 1955. He began working with Paul Horn in 1975, and played in his band for two years. Neil also backed up such musicians as Barney Kessel, Herb Ellis, and Sonny Stitt. In 1977, Neil moved to Toronto, which has become his home. He is very active in the local jazz scene, playing with such artists as Moe Koffman, Ed Bickert, and Rob McConnell. He has also played with many visiting jazz artists, to name a few: James Moody, George Coleman, Jay McShann, Tommy Flanagan, Lee Konitz, Joe Farrell, Slide Hampton, and Woody Shaw. Neil travelled and recorded with Woody Shaw, and Neil’s own recording, 49th Parallell (Concord Jazz 4396), features Woody Shaw on trumpet, and Joe Henderson on saxophone. In 1986 Neil began working with George Shearing. Together, they have worked with many other great artists, such as Mel Tormé, Joe Williams, Nancy Wilson, Robert Farnon, and Diana Krall. They have travelled worldwide, and Neil has made numerous recordings with George Shearing. Neil has also recorded with a number of other artists such as Jay McShann, Doc Cheatham, Geoff Keezer, Sam Noto, Peter Leitch, Pat LaBarbera, Kevin Dean, Rob McConnell, Ed Bickert, Lorne Lofsky, Kirk MacDonald, and Gene DiNovi; and JMOG, a cooperative band featuring Don Thompson, Pat LaBarbera, and Joe LaBarbera. Numerous recordings on which Neil plays have won Canada’s Juno Award. More recently, Neil has been touring internationally with singer Roberta Gambarini. Neil continues to compose music and freelance extensively in the Toronto area.


Kircona is a high school jazz trio in Hamilton with three members, Ben, Miles, and Philip. All three have experience playing in big band ensembles, including the Hamilton All Star Jazz Band organization and Jazz FM youth big band organization. Each of them have years of jazz playing experience.

Miles Koseleci-Vieira is a 17 year old from Hamilton, Ontario, who has played trumpet for six years. Miles is currently the 2nd trumpet player of both the Hamilton All Star Jazz Band and the Jazz FM Youth Big Band. Miles’ notable influences are  Chet Baker, Roy Hargrove and Till Bronner. Miles has also studied in the Humber Jazz Youth program and is part of his own Jazz trio, Kircona.

Philip Luke is a 17 year old from Hamilton, Ontario, he’s played bass for 5 years. Philip currently plays in the Hamilton All Star Jazz Band, Jazz FM Youth Big Band and the Humber Community Music School. Philip’s influences include Ray Brown, Paul Chambers, and Ron Carter.

Ben O’Rourke is a 17 year old drummer from Hamilton with over 8 years experience on the instrument. He has played in the Hamilton All Star Jazz Band organization for 5 years and in the Kircona jazz trio for 3 years. Ben draws influence from drummers Bill Stewart, Art Blakey and Mark Guiliana.

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