Marina Pires is a Brazilian-American actress and singer-songwriter. She most recently joined the Broadway company of Aladdin as Jasmine. She's also been a swing and understudy for Gloria on the Broadway First National tour of On Your Feet! The Story of Emilio & Gloria Estefan. Past works include Rapunzel, Into The Woods at the Adrienne Arsht Center; Vanessa in In The Heights at Dallas Theatre Center, and Evita at the Asolo Rep. directed by Josh Rhodes.
Marina is also a lyricist specializing in Folk and Musical Theatre styles. Her music has been featured in the off-broadway musical A Never-Ending Line, and at Broadway-Au-Carre in Paris, composed by Jaime Lozano. Their song “Mountain In The Sky” was nominated for a MAC award this last March in New York.
She’s a proud orbiting member of Marisa Michaelson’s Constellation Chor in New York City.
Marina is so excited to announce this new music partnership with Luke Wygodny, lovingly titled “The Heartstrings Project.” She wishes now more than ever, to aid in the global acceptance of artistic collaboration as a form of human communication.
Born and raised in Chicago, Luke grew up living & breathing music. His dad always cranked up the Allman Brothers and Jimi Hendrix while his mom shared story telling through Phil Ochs, Bob Dylan and Cat Stevens. At a very young age Wygodny found peace through his cello. As he got older he found himself jamming on his dads beat up old Yamaha guitar. He started writing songs ever since and in his teens was found playing gigs all over the Chicagoland area. While in high school Luke dove into the acting world, which led him to Syracuse University. He majored in pretending, acting and trusting instincts that resonate deep within. After college Luke moved to NYC to pursue storytelling. After 9 years in New York gigging with original material & acting all over the country he now lives wherever the music takes him.
As a singer/songwriter Wygodny finished up a collection of songs with Water & Rye recorded at The Great North Sound Society mixed & produced by Sam Kassirer & mastered by Dave Gardner. Also back in the day he recorded a solo album entitled Collecting Sea Glass (which he keeps tucked away in his childhood basement in the Chicago burbs)
To keep his heartstrings in tune Luke found peace in artist Marina Pires. They recently recorded a new single THE LINE at UI Sound Studios in Boulder, CO with members of the folk band Elephant Revival helping tell the story. They've since finished mixing with Dr. Caw in Chicago.
As an actor he’s toured the country in the Broadway musical Once (Glen Hansard music), American idiot (Green Day music), Soul Doctor (Shlomo Carlebach music) & Hundred Days (The Bengsons music). Next up Luke is spending quality time in the studio putting together a whole new world of songs with his favorite humans Marina Pires, Elias Wygodny, Sam Quiggins & Peter Spero... STAY TUNED!
E L I A S
Elias grew up in Chicagoland, Illinois as a singer, actor and sculptor. Elias is a certified Lucid Body Instructor, Reiki Master, Yoga Teacher and Mindfulness Educator. He has taught Mindfulness-Based practices since 2014, spanning from private to public classes both internationally and locally, at various NY Yoga Studios, in Private/Public Education Sectors, in corporate and governmental arenas, as well as at The University of Michigan. A graduate of the University of Michigan: BFA in Musical Theatre. Now, he is fascinated with unlocking human potential through science, creativity, play & music.
Being Luke’s brother, he has always been inspired by musical expression. His first encounters with music were from the vibrations of Luke’s cello when he was in the womb. Luke began playing cello at two and a half years old and he was born when Luke was three and a half years old. He believes that the truest form of communication is through music. In truth, everything is music, which is why he feels it makes a difference if we are in tune with ourselves and others as we walk among the world. His intention is to blend his love for the folk song, storytelling, and mindfulness for the possibility of tuning humanities heartstrings.
S A M
Samuel Quiggins is from Nashville, Tennessee where he began playing the cello at the age of 5. He was trained in classical music at a young age through the Suzuki method and eventually went on to study and receive his Bachelor of Music degree at the Manhattan School of Music. He currently is based in NYC as a freelance cellist. Although Samuel’s training and roots come from classical music training, he has spent his years since school immersing himself into other genres found in New York’s diverse music scene.
Samuel and Luke met while working together in 2013 for the international broadway musical tour of Green Day’s American Idiot. It didn’t take long for them to realize that they had a strong connection through music and they have been playing together ever since. For Sam, music has always been his most natural form of communication.
Starting cello at a young age allowed for music to become a tool for him to genuinely express himself. Samuel believes that music serves society as a universal language that transcends standard forms of interaction between individuals. To him, expression through art is simply a vessel to carry and share the identity of one’s soul to another. Samuel’s passion for music is matched only with his love of whiskey, tank tops, and an endless need to connect and create with other passionate people.
Nyssa grew up learning violin under her mother’s tutelage. Summers were spent either at the American Suzuki Institute in Steven’s Point, WI or at the Credo Chamber Music Program in Oberlin, OH.
Nyssa also grew up on stage, graduating with a BFA in musical theatre from the Webster Conservatory of Theatre Arts. She spent several years working and recording around the country as an actor-musician, including performing in the national tour of the Broadway musical Once. Based in NYC, Nyssa splits her time between playing violin on and off stage, as well as performing in front of and working behind the camera with her production company OutaLine Productions. With The Heartstrings Project she’s found not only the people she enjoys making music with, but also a family of like-minded artists dedicated to being conduits and change and spreading compassion.
P E T E R
Peter Spero is a composer/orchestrator for feature films and media, producer, director, studio engineer, song writer, and performing artist. Film credits include the Heavens to Betsy film series directed by Robert Alaniz, Book of Leah directed by Charlie Matthau (in post production for release in 2020) as well as Robert Alaniz’s latest film Honest to God (in production for release in 2020). As a musician and song writer Peter has been signed to MCA, RCA, and Chrysalis records. Among others, he has worked with producers Mike Chapman (Blondie), Frank Filipetti (7x grammy winning music producer).