Loading Events

« All Events

  • This event has passed.

Madison Jazz Festival Presents MR. CHAIR’S STRINGS & THINGS AT CAFE CODA

June 12 @ 7:00 pm - 11:59 pm


The Madison Jazz Festival and Cafe CODA will present Mr. Chair’s Strings & Things, led by Madison-based contemporary fusion ensemble Mr. Chair, and featuring guest musicians (to be announced) on Wednesday, June 12 at 7:00pm.

Winner of the 2021 Wisconsin Area Music Industry Award for Best Jazz Artist, Mr. Chair brings a truly unique performance to every stage they play. Mr. Chair looks like a jazz combo, enchants like a string quartet, and electrifies like a rock band, all while delighting listeners with their fresh and authentic sound. As classically-trained musicians well-versed in jazz, electronics, prog rock, world music and beyond, Mr. Chair is a contemporary fusion ensemble for music fans of all backgrounds. Their sound palette is diverse, and used to tell stories in styles cinematic, surreal, romantic, funky, and whimsical. Mr. Chair features Ben Ferris (bass), Jason Kutz (piano) and Mike Koszewski (drums).

Ben Ferris is a bassist and educator from Madison, WI. A student of NEA Jazz Master Richard Davis, he graduated with a music-education degree from UW-Madison in 2013. Ben performs regularly in the midwest, especially with the Ben Ferris Trio, a creative music ensemble that focuses on new compositions by musicians in the band. His group the Ben Ferris Quintet released their debut album, “Home” in 2016 featuring original compositions by Ben and other members of the ensemble. Ben plays and writes music for “Mr Chair,” a contemporary ensemble of electronic trombone (Mark Hetzler), keyboard (Jason Kutz), percussion (Mike Koszewski) and electronic upright bass. As a sideman Ben performs with Nuggernaut (jazz-funk), The Jon Hoel Trio (original compositions with saxophone led trio), Gabe Burdulis Band (Nashville based original pop/rock music), as well as a number of performances in the classical, jazz, rock and contemporary music scenes.

Jason Kutz is a musician based in Madison, WI, playing, performing, teaching, and composing all styles of music. He is rooted in contemporary music and improvisation, often combining acoustic and classical piano styles with electronic synthesis. He studied recording technology and music business at UW-Oshkosh and completed his Master’s in Piano Performance at UW-Madison. He is a founding member of Mr. Chair, an innovative and inimitable ensemble that plays music in its own style. Mr. Chair was the WAMI Jazz Artist of the Year 2021; has released two acclaimed albums of original music; has reimagined Stravinsky’s Pulcinella; worked with Filipino singer/artist Leslie Damaso to create an opera-like stage work featuring Filipino art songs and contemporary myth; and is working on an orchestral hip-hop album with First Wave Scholar, activist, poet, and Atlanta-based singer Dequadray White. In 2018 and 2019 Kutz was commissioned by Dr. Stephen Meyers, Vilas Distinguished Professor of Geoscience at UW-Madison, to write two pieces of science-inspired music. He was also commissioned by the Wisconsin Academy for Arts, Letters & Sciences in 2022. This work was inspired by Bruce Crownover’s prints from The Last Glacier, and the final piece was a music video that accompanied an animation of Crownover’s work entitled Melody for a Melting Glacier. In 2023 he completed a project showcasing 23 special concerts, each one featuring new music.

Mike Koszewski is an experienced musician from Madison with a diverse background in percussive arts. As a chamber musician he has performed and held masterclasses throughout the midwest and east coast and was recently a featured guest percussionist with Oakwood Chamber Players for their 2016/17 season. He is an versatile drum kit player and pit orchestra musician, regularly performing with Four Seasons Theater and Capital City Theater, as well as experimental jazz/rock combo Lovely Socialite and the Ben Ferris Jazz Octet.

Free event! Sponsored by Madison Jazz Festival

NOTE: The regular Karaoke will be delayed to 9 PM


June 12
7:00 pm - 11:59 pm
Event Category:


Cafe Coda
1224 Williamson st
Madison, WI United States
+ Google Map