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INTERVIEW: Steve Savage Talks Savage Pianos

T.J. Clemente

Savage Pianos features Matt Tobin and Steve Savage. (Photo: Jennifer Bush)

WHBPAC has postponed/canceled all performances from March 12 through April 16 due to COVID-19.

Savage Pianos has been billed as the foremost dueling piano show in the Northeast. Both Steve Savage and Matt Tobin are known for their craftsmanship, deep repertoires, and unique personalities.

In an interview with Savage about the upcoming show, of which they do about 100 per year, he was very excited having "never played the historic Westhampton Beach Performing Arts Center before." Both Tobin and Savage will appear at the Westhampton Beach Performing Arts Center (WHBPAC) on Thursday, March 19 at 7:30 p.m.

Savage said, "Every show is different, we take requests and we truly never know where the requests may lead us! We love the interaction with the audiences and we aim at entertaining them." He explained, "We have two custom baby grand pianos, not the nine foot concert pianos you sometimes see. Matt and I face one another. We dress smart casual, but no tux or any of that. My partnering with Matt is special. We have a special connection together on stage, and we seem to always engage the audiences with our show. You never know when we might just break out into a Backstreet Boys song or a requested popular show tune, done in our unique style. We play new stuff and old stuff, whatever the audience seems to want. We seem to have the ability to find the sweet pocket, and throw in some comedy too."

What impressed me most was Savage's modesty yet confidence about both his and Tobin's ability "to entertain" their many audiences. Matt Tobin, a classically trained musician from the Boston University, is the more formally trained of the two, but Savage, who studied piano at Berklee, is also proud of his musical background. He said, "I always give it my all, as does Matt - whether we are playing a private party for nine people or a larger hall."

After the interview I found myself curious enough to inquire about getting tickets. It seems Savage Pianos is the ultimate hybrid of all modern forms of entertainment. Besides, I love great piano playing. Savage agreed that was what sets Savage Pianos apart from the rest of such shows; the duo's unique ability to engage the audience with comedy, witty banter and excellent musicianship.

"We have a nice New Orleans cabaret sort of vibe, upbeat and definitely totally entertaining," he concluded.

Tickets to Savage Pianos start at $53.

WHBPAC has postponed/canceled all performances from March 12 through April 16 due to COVID-19.

Westhampton Beach Performing Arts Center is located at 76 Main Street in Westhampton Beach. For more information, call 631-288-1500 or visit whbpac.org.

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