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VIDEO: Hear sultry jazz songstress Laila Biali in speakeasy setting in Cowichan

Cabaret Series at Cowichan Theatre closes its 2019/20 season with super show

Multi-award-winning singer-songwriter, pianist, and CBC Music national radio host, Laila Biali, had a banner 2019 and is now ready to keep the momentum going and kick off the new year with a bang!

She’s sharing a first taste of music from her forthcoming album, which is set for release this spring, with the lead single, ‘Sugar’. Audiences will have the chance to hear ‘Sugar’ and even more new music as Biali brings her captivating live performance to venues across Canada and the U.S. through the winter.

She’s hitting the Cowichan Performing Arts Centre’s Cabaret Series on Thursday, Feb. 13 as part of a swing through the Pacific Northwest. Showtime is 7:30 p.m.

The event will close the third season of the Cabaret Series, which transforms the stage into the coolest place to catch live music: a speakeasy-style venue with on-stage seating.

It’s a great chance to enjoy a night of sophisticated jazz music intertwined with a catchy pop spin with Biali’s bright and vibrant music.

“Most of this new music was created last winter when I was at the Banff Centre for a week-long writing residency,” reflects the performer. “My husband and co-producer, Ben Wittman, helped workshop the material before we went into the studio to record, but this tour will be the first time these songs are brought to life on stage. I can’t wait to see how they manifest in live performance.”

She has headlined festivals and venues spanning five continents, from New York City’s Carnegie Hall to Beijing’s National Centre for the Performing Arts, and has supported international icon, Sting.

In 2019, Biali’s self-titled release earned her a JUNO award for vocal jazz album of the year. The year before that, she was awarded top prize at the Canadian Songwriting Competition in the jazz category. She was also the youngest-ever double winner at Canada’s National Jazz Awards, where she was named SOCAN composer of the year and keyboardist of the year. She received her first JUNO nomination for Tracing Light (2011), and a spot on DownBeat Magazine’s Best Albums of the Year for Live in Concert (2013). In September of 2017, Biali hosted CBC Music’s national radio show, Saturday Night Jazz, a weekly show broadcast to listeners across Canada. While she continues to earn high honours in the jazz world, her signature sound transcends genres.

Tickets are $35 each. Get them at the Cowichan Ticket Centre, phone 250-748-7529 or online at

Jazz performer Laila Biali comes to the Cowichan Performing Arts Centre’s Cabaret Series on Feb. 13. (Submitted)