Kris Wettstein creates music with global roots and swing-for- the-heavens ambition.
A committed musician about town, he has collaborated with Grey McMurray (itsnotmeitsyou), Pauline Kim Harris (Wordless Music Orchestra) and Esther Noh (Either/Or), and has performed at notable venues including Judson Memorial Church, Rockwood Music Hall, Park Church Co-Op, The Bowery Electric, and Spectrum. Kris draws on global experiences in creating his music. Born in Canada, he spent his adolescence in Saudi Arabia. In November 2009, he traveled to Dakar, Senegal where he performed to thousands of people with pop star Carlou D, including an appearance at the Festival Mondial des Arts Négres (World Festival Of Black Arts) alongside artists such as Youssou N’Dour and Busta Rhymes. At this time he also collaborated with several other well known West African musicians including Daby Balde (Senegal), and Alfadio Dara (Guinea).
Since moving to Queens in 2012, Kris has written and performed a song cycle inspired by the sculptures of Isamu Noguchi, and toured the East Coast playing his own works alongside those of experimental composer Morton Feldman. In 2014, he released an EP of original songs ‘For Nothing Holds You In’, recorded with Grey McMurray, Dan Sedwick (Kelly Polar) and Marjorie Gere (Boston Public Quartet). Most recently, he toured the West Coast in 2016 playing his hour-long piano meditation ‘tent of meeting’.
Kris studied music at Walla Walla University, and at Rice University, where he graduated with a Master’s in Piano Performance. He is on faculty at Art House Astoria teaching piano, percussion and songwriting. He also conducts a gospel choir called The Street Singers as music director for Mott Haven Reformed Church.