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A Christiaan Mix (2004)
Hello, I'm Christiaan (2004)
Simple. (2005)
Recital (2005)


Feeling a bit camera shy



more music streams at

Born in 1986, Christiaan Smith-Kotlarek seeks to enjoy himself and thereby cause enjoyment. His major, Vocal Performance at UW Madison, teaches him vital disciplines for musical success.

Christiaan enjoys moving people; stirring them up to accomplish something positive in whatever way they connect with his songwriting, jazz, or classical singing. His intention is to bring the audience to his experience of the world's exuberance; however that manifests itself in the moment.

Christiaan currently sings, plays guitar, and manages for Jazz with a Twist, a Madison-based jazz/swing/pop quintet. The group has performed at small venues like coffeehouses and sandwich shops, but they groove best when they play at Memorial Union Terrace or Madison’s hip, upscale Crave Lounge. Christiaan also runs VoiceJam, a weekly vocal improvisation club that is open to the public, and helps promote Jazz Jam through the Wisconsin Union Directorate (WUD) Music Committee.

As a songwriter, Christiaan’s self-produced discography includes Simple. (2005), Recital (2005), and A Christiaan Mix (2004). He has played many venues of varied sizes, from unplugged art galleries and open mics to Manitowoc’s MetroJam where his band, GiViN, brought down the pavilion just before Glenn Tillbrook and the Fluffers. You may have seen him as finalist at the All Campus Idol Competition last spring, or in early March when he won First Place at Finals in the Unplugged guitar/voice competition hosted by Phi Mu Alpha, the Madison chapter of the national men's music fraternity.

Christiaan will tour with UW Concert Choir this spring, and in 2005 he made his University Opera debut when he sipped tea as Pastor in Vanessa. That summer he also gnashed his teeth in the Madison Savoyards production of Pirates of Penzance. Christiaan received this year's Opera Props Scholarship to participate in Le Nozze di Figaro.

Christiaan holds a position as Assistant Guitar Instructor at UW Green Bay’s Guitar Camp, and he also chairs Norway Mountain Ski Area’s Snowboard School and can boardslide rails like he was born strapped to a snowboard. His mother refuses to comment, but admits that the kid’s got game. He also teaches canoeing with Madison School and Community Recreation and uses environmentally-friendly waste management techniques at Madison Environmental Group. In his free time, Christiaan loves goofing, jamming, and connecting to his Italian side (though his name doesn’t suggest it) by eating spaghetti every chance he gets.

video clip - copy and paste link:

Read the bio and see a picture of the previous three-piece band, GiViN, at:

This list represents some people/groups that influence Christiaan: Jason Mraz; Dispatch; John Mayer; Frank Sinatra; Louis Prima; Martin Sexton; Bobby McFerrin; Al Jarreau; Mel Torme; Ella Fitzgerald; Leo Kottke; Black Eyed Peas; Babatundi Olatunji.

Peace, Harmony, Creativity!

Enjoy the day!