Maria Bamford promo

Buffalo State Performing Arts Center at Rockwell Hall Announces Spring Series

Promo poster for Letterkenny showing the lead comedians

Letterkenny Presents: A Night of Stand-Up

The Buffalo State Performing Arts Center at Rockwell Hall is excited to highlight its spring 2024 series, kicking off the season with Letterkenny Presents: A Night of Stand-Up on Saturday, February 17, at 8:00 p.m. The hit Canadian sitcom Letterkenny, streaming on Hulu, has received numerous awards and nominations, including a Canadian Screen Award for Best Comedy Series. This live show will feature comedians from the Letterkenny family, headlined by the always hilarious Mark Forward, who plays Coach on the series. Forward’s work includes appearances on the FX series Fargo as well as John Oliver’s New York Stand-Up Show on Comedy Central and The Late Late Show on CBS. This live night of stand-up at the Performing Arts Center will also feature Jeff McEnery, who plays Alexander on Letterkenny. He starred in the movie Dog Pound and was nominated for “Best Male Stand-Up” at the Canadian Comedy Awards. Also performing live will be Olivia Stadler and Allie Pearse. This night of stand-up with amazing comedians from the Letterkenny family is presented by AEG.

Maria Bamford

The Performing Arts Center presents comedian and actress Maria Bamford on Friday, April 12, at 8:00 p.m. Revered for her deeply personal and experimental comedy about mental illness, Bamford starred in Lady Dynamite, the surreal, semi-autobiographical Netflix comedy series about a comedian who suffers a nervous breakdown. She is also the star of three unconventional hour-long stand-up specials: Weakness Is the Brand, Old Baby, and Maria Bamford: The Special Special Special! Bamford was the first female comic to have two half-hour Comedy Central Presents specials, and she starred alongside Patton Oswalt, Zach Galifianakis, and Brian Posehn in the Comedy Central series The Comedians of Comedy and Netflix’s Comedians of Comedy: The Movie. She also created and starred in the cult hit web series The Maria Bamford Show, in which she plays all the characters. Bamford is also recognized for her prolific voiceover work, including characters on Big Mouth, BoJack Horseman, Summer Camp Island, Adventure Time, Talking Tom and Friends, Bob’s Burgers, Legend of Korra, Puss in Boots, CatDog, and PBS’s Emmy-winning series Word Girl. She played DeBrie Bardeaux on Netflix’s Arrested Development and recurred on the ABC hit series Fresh Off the Boat. She also stars as Tilly Mulch in Team Coco’s scripted podcast Frontier Tween. Bamford is the 2014 winner of the American Comedy Award for Best Club Comic. Her late-night appearances include Conan, The Tonight Show, The Late Show with Stephen Colbert, and Late Night with Seth Meyers.

Closeup of Maria Bamford making an angry face
Promotional shot of Keiko Matsui

Keiko Matsui

Jazz pianist Keiko Matsui makes her return to the Performing Arts Center stage on Saturday, April 13, at 8:00 p.m. An acclaimed pianist, composer, and humanitarian, Matsui has worked with such luminaries as Miles Davis, Stevie Wonder, Bob James, and Hugh Masekela. She is a major advocate for humanitarian causes and has lent her voice to the Daniel Pearl and Susan G. Komen Foundations. Her music was prominently featured in Say It, Fight It, Cure It, a Lifetime special profiling several courageous women battling breast cancer. Her illustrious career includes the 1998 album Full Moon and the Shrine, which was accompanied by the acclaimed PBS special Keiko Matsui: Light above the Trees. In 1999, she performed at “A Golden Moment,” a concert featuring Olympic skaters Kristi Yamaguchi, Tara Lipinski, and others, which benefited the Susan G. Komen Foundation. Her 2001 CD Deep Blue topped Billboard’s Contemporary Jazz charts, and she was the first Japanese artist to achieve this honor. Matsui’s depth as a composer has allowed her to contribute music to soundtracks in Japan, the United States, and Russia. In 2011, she released her Billboard Top 5 recording The Road…, featuring Kirk Whalum. And in 2013 she was an invited guest in Istanbul for International Jazz Day, performing alongside such greats as Herbie Hancock and Branford Marsalis. Her 30th recording, Euphoria, was released in 2023 and further solidifies her place as one of the most significant and thrilling pianists in contemporary jazz.

Spyro Gyra

The Performing Arts Center welcomes Sypro Gyra on Sunday, April 28, at 7:00 p.m., when the band members return to their hometown of Buffalo as part of their 50th Anniversary Tour. The internationally acclaimed jazz fusion band began inauspiciously 50 years ago, when Jay Beckenstein and a few musician friends in Buffalo organized a get-together on their shared night off from working in bands that actually made money. It was a simple, humble idea with a name that was likewise simple and humble, “Tuesday Night Jazz Jam.” Since then, this super group has released over 30 albums, playing over 10,000 concerts on six continents, and garnering gold and platinum records along the way. Spyro Gyra has maintained its standards of excellence that has sustained them on the “A list” of live attractions in jazz for 50 years.

Band members of Spyro Gyra pose for the camera
Promo poster for Alan Doyle show May 11

Alan Doyle

And Funtime Presents Alan Doyle—actor, producer, author, and lead singer for Newfoundland’s beloved Great Big Sea for more than 20 years—on Saturday, May 11, at 8:00 p.m. With five solo albums under his belt, Doyle has been touring the world with his ace six-piece band for the last decade. In late 2014, he released his best-selling memoir, Where I Belong, followed by A Newfoundlander in Canada, released in October 2017, and All Together Now, published in November 2020. Amid these projects, Doyle found time to write music for and appear in CBC’s Republic of Doyle, guest-star on CBC’s Murdoch Mysteries, and perform in the films Winter’s Tale (2014) and Robin Hood (2010). With his 2022 live album, Here, Tonight, and a recent Juno nomination for his 2021 album, Back to the Harbour, Doyle chalks up much of his tremendous success to luck: “I’m the luckiest guy I’ve ever even heard of,” he said. “This was all I ever wanted: a life in the music business, singing concerts.” Doyle hails from Petty Harbour, Newfoundland, and formed Great Big Sea in 1993 with Sean McCann, Bob Hallett, and Darrell Power, which fused traditional Newfoundland music with their own pop sensibilities. Their nine albums, double-disc hits retrospective, and two DVD releases have all reached gold or platinum heights and have sold a combined 1.2 million copies in Canada.

Tickets to all shows are on sale now and can be purchased Tuesdays through Fridays from 10:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. in person at the Rockwell Hall Box Office or by phone at (716-878-3005), or online anytime at

Media Contact:
Andrew Binder, Director of Operations
Performing Arts Center at Rockwell Hall
Buffalo State University
(716) 878-3599

Maria Bamford photo credit: Robyn Von Swank