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Happy New Year and Happy News! 

Happy New Year, Symphomaniacs! This time of year always naturally comes with some reflection as it's the time of year when the gigs slow down, the holiday hustle is over, and we start to book out the rest of the year.  Our years tend to fly by with wild abandon, considering we are not only musicians, but also have full-time jobs, partners, and some of us, children. This past year was filled with some fantastic gigs and we hope to see you at those same venues and even some new venues this year.  We are also actively (and speedily) booking weddings for 2019 and 2020.

We in the band have some happy news to share: our lead singers, Christine & Ricky, have also gotten engaged to one another. The two met when Ricky was auditioning for Christine's former band, She Said Sunday, and more or less sang together before they actually conversed.  Almost eight years of harmonizing later, Christine and Ricky are now actively planning their own destination wedding in Turks and Caicos for June 2020.

Both Ricky and Christine's experience in performing at weddings and working with our local vendors has facilitated their own wedding planning.  If you're considering having live music at your reception, we encourage you to reach out to a real couple who knows the ins-and-outs of the wedding business here in the Lehigh Valley.  

Contact us for our rates and details about our wedding entertainment options and hurry! We're running out of dates for 2019 and booking now for 2020.

White Wedding 

Summer and fall weddings - seems like everyone's having one. And while there is something beautiful about being outside, or under a tent with the moonlight overhead, I believe there's something equally magical about a December wedding and it's a wonderful option that more brides should consider.

This past weekend, we performed at  Jen & George's wedding at Cairnwood Estate in suburban Philadelphia, PA. This venue is stunning in every detail - from the long driveway as you approach, to the giant front door that makes you feel like you're walking into a castle. And you are, in essence, as Cairnwood is the former country mansion of the Pitcairn family, the founder of Pittsburgh Plate Glass (which you may know now as PPG).
 

Best Thing About Winter Weddings #1: Holiday Decorations 

One of the most beautiful things about the mansion is that it was decked out for the holidays, with a giant Christmas tree in the main room, plus lights on the giant staircase, greenery, and candles everywhere. By the time the guests started arriving and the reception started, the sun was retreating for the day, but the candelabras gave a soft ,glowing ambience that couldn't be matched at any other time of the year. I can understand that non-Christian brides and/or grooms may not be thrilled by the idea of a giant Christmas tree in your reception space, but most of the decorations were non-denominational and more "wintry" - think pine greens and candles. 

Best Thing About Winter Weddings #2: Winter Accessories
There is something especially beautiful about a bridal gown with a vintage fur stole, modern faux fur look-alike, or woolen coat or wrap to keep your arms warm in your wedding dress (or bridesmaid dresses!). Bride Jennifer wore a beautiful stole over her dress and passed out pashminas to her guests to keep warm if they were chilly. 

Best Thing About Winter Weddings #3: Winter and Christmas Songs
For Jennifer and George's wedding, the Sunshine Symphony duo performed a set of acoustic love songs, and it was fun for us to be able to throw in holiday songs like "Baby, It's Cold Outside," or "Let it Snow." Your favorite classic holiday songs also work well as mixes for cocktail or dinner music, think Nat King Cole, Johnny Mathis, Bing Crosby, Burl Ives or Tony Bennett.


If you love historic mansions and want to visit Cairnwood, they offer afternoon teas once a month and lots of events that are open to the public. You can find more information on their website:  http://www.cairnwood.org/

Election Day 

We're up for a "Lehigh Valley Happening" award again this year. We've been finalists for the last two years, so it would be awesome if you could take a minute and vote for us. We are up for an award in TWO categories this year:

Musician or Band
Entertainer

You can vote here:

http://lehigh.happeningmag.com/happeninglist/musician-or-band-2016/ and

http://lehigh.happeningmag.com/happeninglist/entertainer-2016/

Thanks so much for supporting us!

Fall Weddings are Here! 

We had such a great experience at Musikfest. Did you see our write-ups here and here? We had such a great time on stage and backstage. 

Sunshine Symphony rocked Rachel & Greg's receptionWe kicked off our fall wedding season with Rachel and Greg's wedding on August 29th in Philadelphia at the Sheraton University City. The staff down there was 
fabulous, and they decorated the hotel ballroom beautifully and totally transformed it!

Then, just this past weekend, on September 26th, we were thrilled to participate in Beki & Jake's wedding at The Country Garden in Lehigh Township. Jake's Mom did an amazing job decorating the facility, and Beki had friends make her cake (which was lovely and delicious), plus homemade pie and lots of delicious treats. We have three more weddings coming up in the next two weeks and we've got several weddings booked for 2016 already!

Rachel & Greg's Wedding

Beki & Jake's Cake

Beki & Jake's Cake

Don't Stop Believing! 

Christine faces her radiation treatment.It was December 5, 2014, when I got the call that changed my life. I had gone for a routine mammogram, which led to an ultrasound and then a biopsy, after which the doctor said, "it's better that you know than don't know." With no family history of breast cancer, and leading a relatively active and healthy lifestyle, here I was, suddenly a cancer patient.

The first thing I thought was, "How am I going to fit this into my schedule?"  I work full-time, I help my boyfriend and band-mate Ricky Bell raise his two little girls, and we have the band, of course, which has become a very busy enterprise. Not to mention, we have two households and the stuff that comes with them.  All are important to me for different reasons.

The whirlwind began, and suddenly I held a dozen appointment cards in my hand for surgical consults, pre-op appointments, blood tests, radiation and medical oncologists. Ricky coined "Team CB" - the name of my support group of family and friends to get me through this ordeal. Surgery was first, which was a fairly straightforward recovery, and then came seven weeks of radiation.  Fast forward five months later, and here I am - treatment complete.

I'm thankful to my partner Ricky, who helped me make arrangements, came to appointments, and gave me a whole bunch of pep talks. We managed to play gigs (and most of the time I felt pretty decent), rehearse, find new guitarists, update the website, book more gigs, book weddings, and all the things that come with running a successful band. We rented my house and then packed it up and moved. We continued, business as usual, with his kids, explaining that CB had something called cancer that she had to go for treatments for, but that she was going to be ok.

I am happy to say that I feel pretty decent overall, am healing just fine and am thankful that I am able to continue to perform like nothing has happened - which is completely untrue, as I am a changed human being. Oh yes, I more fully understand the need to have a good time, to unwind, to hear and sing along with great music - to celebrate life's happy occasions because life is challenging and throws some difficult things our way.

Thanks to our friends, family and fans for celebrating these happy milestones with Sunshine Symphony! We love you!

Peace, Love & Rock n' Roll,
Christine

Lehigh Valley Music Awards - we're nominated! 

This weekend is the musical community's biggest event in the Lehigh Valley - the Lehigh Valley Music Awards happen on Sunday, March 8th at ArtsQuest.  Sunshine Symphony is thrilled to be nominated by our peers in the music industry as "Outstanding New Band" this year (our second together).

We have been thankful to have performed all over the area in the past year, from "Tunes at Twilight" to Forks Township's Summer Concert series, to Fullerton Carnival, and happy that people have noticed the passion we put into our performances, the time we've spent rehearsing and re-rehearsing, and the variety of the music we play, like our tongue-in-cheek humor as you listen to our version of "Raise Your Glass" that bursts suddenly into the chorus of "Let it Go" from Frozen.

We are also thankful to be a part of the Lehigh Valley and Philadelphia music scenes, and have such a variety of venues in which to perform. To be part of a community that recognizes the arts and its talented musicians is a blessing!

Read about some of the other industry nominees for awards here in this article by Dustin Schoof:
http://www.lehighvalleylive.com/music/index.ssf/2015/03/lehigh_valley_music_awards_16_2.html#incart_2box_entertainment_index.ssf

Make Your Special Event Shine with Sunshine Symphony 

Thank you to Tall Ships America, who found Sunshine Symphony after a band search and asked us to play their Annual Awards Banquet and Gala, which was held in Philadelphia. We said, "Sure!" and then made plans to travel the hour or so into the city to the Sheraton Society Hill.

Tall Ships America is a diverse organization of sailors and educators who host programs to teach young people how to sail and other valuable life lessons, like confidence, leadership,  The organization also has a scholarship program which allows many young people the chance to join the program, even if they never thought it possible.  Tall Ships wanted Sunshine Symphony to entertain the staff after dinner and after their awards ceremony.  We perform at a lot of private parties - and this audience included many age groups and musical tastes. The group was ready to have a good time, and we got everyone dancing and singing along by the end of the night, which you can see in this video clip.

 
 
Organizer Darlene Godin had this to say about working with the Lehigh Valley and Philadelphia's best cover band:
"I just wanted to let you know that we received rave reviews about Sunshine Symphony’s performance at our annual awards banquet on Friday the 6th.  When the dancers finally got on the dance floor, there was no stopping them. Your professional attitude and amazing performance was over the top fantastic. We wish we could bring you with us to all our conferences. From the whole staff here at Tall Ships America,
Thank you, Thank you, Thank you!"

Sunshine Symphony has quite a bit of experience working with event planners and corporations to provide entertainment and sound support for special events. Christine, in her former life, worked as a Marketing and Corporate Event planner, so she is very familiar with what corporate party-goers expect and enjoy at special events. She's also aware of the questions that event planners ask, has great attention to detail and knows just what information needs to be exchanged in order to make all aspects of the party a success.

We have a substantial sound system as well, that can handle large rooms like the very large ballroom at the Sheraton Society Hill without overpowering it. With our sound set up, Tall Ships America was able to use our wireless microphone and PA system to announce their award recipients, and we were happy to run sound during the awards banquet and make sure everything sounded great.

If you need Sunshine Symphony to illuminate your special event, please use our form to Contact Us, or give us a call a 888-937-3568

Peace, Love & Rock n Roll,
Christine Bainbridge, Sunshine Symphony

 

Happy 2015! 

Sunshine Symphony, 1/9/15 - Thanks to Andy Sawran for the photo.



Happy 2015 to our new fans and our fans from the very beginning! We are overjoyed that 2014 was so successful.

We booked lots of new venues! We met so many great people and got to celebrate with our wonderful new friends and fans at their happy occasions.  We'll be making our debut at Club Gravity at Chicago's Restaurant (previously Mezza Luna in Allentown). We're excited to be playing for the members of the Fullerton Fire Company in May, and playing more shows at the Coplay Saengerbund this year.  Also, we hope to soon add a few dates at the Parx Casino in Philadelphia. Several weddings are already booked here and in Philadelphia and there are a few more in the works.

We're working on new music! At rehearsal on Monday, we worked on 5 new songs that we'll be adding to upcoming sets and probably a few more in the next few weeks before we start getting ready for "wedding season". The result of our 2014 Music Poll showed the MOST votes for the Luke Bryan song "Play it Again" - so we may be adding that to our set soon.  Other high-ranked songs from our poll: "Happy" from Pharrell Williams, "Fancy" by Iggy Azalea (I am not fantastic at rapping, but I'd try it),  "Rude" by Magic (already in our set list!) and "All of Me" by John Legend.

I'm currently obsessed with Taylor Swift's "Blank Space" song and can't seem to get that out of my head...we may have to add that one as well.

What would you like to see from us in 2015? More videos? Where would you like to see us play? Let us know in the comments, and we'll do our best to make it happen. Happy New Year - hope it's a great one for you, too!

Peace, Love & Rock n' Roll,
Christine Bainbridge, Sunshine Symphony
 

Welcome Kyle Campbell 

Sunshine Symphony is excited to announce the addition of guitarist/vocalist Kyle Campbell to the band. Kyle is a native of Nazareth, PA, where he played with local band original/cover band Project 67 and won two WZZO Backyard Bands competitions. 

Interestingly enough, Ricky and Kyle have many mutual musical friends and have almost crossed paths in the past.  They realized this after Kyle agreed to join the band and they started determining whether they had jammed together previously.

Kyle's been involved in many different projects over the year, including writing and recording original music as a solo artist. He is releasing his solo album "Sunday's Best" in mid-January.

We think Kyle is a nice guy, with a great sense of humor, serious guitar skills, and may now be the most stylish member of the band. Kyle and his wife Teara live in Manayunk, but have family up here that you'll probably see at some of our local gigs. You may even see a bit of Sunshine down in the Philly soon, too.

 

Vote for Sunshine Symphony as "Discover New Artist" 

We are so thrilled, as we approach our first birthday, to have been nominated for a Lehigh Valley Music Award for "Discover New Artist!" Sponsored by Discover Lehigh Valley, the award goes to the best new artist in the Lehigh Valley.

It's easy to vote! Go here: ​http://blog.discoverlehighvalley.com/2014/11/30/discover/vote-for-the-2015-lehigh-valley-music-awards-discover-new-artist/

1. Select "Sunshine Symphony"
2. Enter your email address.
3. Click Submit!

Done! Thank you so much for your support this year. We are so excited about 2015!

Peace, Love & Rock n' Roll,
Christine Bainbridge, Sunshine Symphony

(And Ricky Bell, Tim Kerrigan, Ian Frey and Steve Nesbit)