The annual Fashion for a Passion Show at the ARC Community Event Centre last month provided a platform for two talented singers to meet and perform together. Frances-Mae Pagani and Tyler Bartfai joined forces for two songs for the show, which gave them an opportunity to learn from each other.
“I started singing because my mom and dad play instruments, and that’s how they got me into singing,” said Pagani. “I sang at the last fashion show with my dad, and it was fun to sing with Tyler this time.”
“It pushed me out of my comfort zone,” he said. “Frances-Mae picked interesting songs that I hadn’t heard and wouldn’t have known about otherwise, and I was just the guitar player for this performance, so that was different for me too, to play accompaniment.”
Bartfai, who is a local singer/songwriter with a new EP album, also performed one of his own songs at the fashion show in addition to playing with Pagani.
The two singers made their connection through Jenn Morris, who works at inclusion Powell River.
“I went to Tyler’s EP release party, and when I heard him sing, I thought, ‘This is amazing,’” said Morris. “Then, when it came time to plan the fashion show, I started thinking about who I could partner Frances-Mae with, and Tyler came to mind. I sent him a text, a few weeks later he and Frances-Mae met at a picnic, and that was that.”
Bartfai does a lot of touring in the summers, but can be found around Powell River for the fall and winter.
“I spend that time playing gigs and writing songs,” he said. “The fashion show was perfect timing. I always like to give back when I can, and this was a great experience.”
Pagani said she felt the same way.
“Tyler is so good with his singing and so kind,” she added. “I was really happy for his time.”
The best part of the whole evening for Pagani was the opportunity to be on stage.
“I love singing,” she said. “I was a little nervous, but my mom played fiddle with us on the last song and my dad was in the audience, so I felt supported. We got a standing ovation; that was great.”
Community involvement makes the fashion show successful year after year.
“It raises funds for Advocates in Motion,” said Morris. “We wouldn’t be able to put it on without people in the community. Our clothing came from Sublime, Blue Sky Consignment and THICK, and we had people model in the show from Rotary and the fire department, as well as several self-advocates. It’s always a great evening, and so uplifting.”
Bartfai and Pagani are already planning ahead for next year’s show, and are thinking about who else they could perform with. Pagani had a message for Powell River: “Thanks for your support, and try singing, it’s wonderful.”
For more information about Bartfai’s upcoming events, including a performance on Saturday, November 16, at Wildwood Public House, go to tylerbartfaimusic.com.