Spotlight On: Viktorija Geèytë goes for Go Trio at MSH
Viktorija Geèytë is guest vocalist with Gene Perla's Go Trio, 7:30 p.m. May 16, in the "Jazz Upstairs" cabaret series, Miller Symphony Hall, 23 N. Sixth St., Allentown.
Perla, bass, is joined by Sean Gough, piano, and Colby Inzer, drums. Sitting in is Joe Magnarelli, trumpet, flugelhorn.
Geèytë, born in Vilnius, capital of Lithuania, began her singing career at age five with the prodding of her grandmother whose friend gave singing lessons to local children. The lessons grew to public appearances in the surrounding areas. Soon, Geèytë had steady work, even at five-years-old.
"I remember my first pro gig. It was in an Estonian-type restaurant with a colorful dance floor," says Geèytë in a recent phone interview. "I only did one song the first night with my teacher and two the next. I wasn't very conscientiously looking for anything bigger.
"The next thing just led to another and I found myself singing jazz. I was about 10 then, and I really just found myself singing with different groups."
Geèytë joined a sextet at 17, travelling with her teacher. The band members were much older than her. She doesn't remember the details of how she joined the group except that one day while singing she was asked to audition. The band, Green Bridge Band, formed in 2000, was originally Dixieland of Vilnius.
A few years later, the young vocalist applied for and was offered a scholarship at Lafayette College. She moved to the United States in 2004. She sang with a variety of groups.
She traveled to Paris while studying at Lafayette. She knew a little French and wanted to learn more, so she went back in 2008.
She met Gene Perla at Cosmic Cup Coffee Shop, Easton, and she has been singing with the Go Trio since then.
"To me, the Go Trio is very special. Between Sean, who is a completely fresh piano player and a modern-generation piano player, and Gene, who has all the experience and all the adventures behind him, these guys playing together is like magic happening. The way they play, the styles, and also listen to every note is extraordinary."