Tea Party & International Symphony - Windsor 2023Windsor’s Hometown rock and roll heroes The Tea Party, took the stage at Caesars Windsor on Friday, February 3rd, and brought their signature sound to life with the help of the International Symphony Orchestra. This fusion of rock and a full symphony, branded as “Tea and Symphony” on drummer Jeff Burrows bass drum, created an emotional and haunting atmosphere that had the audience entranced.

The setlist was comprised of some of the band’s biggest hits, including “Temptation,” “Psychopomp,” and “Gone.” These tracks, combined with the orchestral arrangements, made for a dynamic and powerful performance that showcased the band’s unique style. The crowd was especially moved by “Mantra” and “The Ocean At The End,” which highlighted the seamless blend of rock and symphony. Some of the songs, like “Gone” already had some inspired and essential electronic symphonic undertones, but they’ve rarely been played by a symphony.


One of the standout moments of the night was the band’s cover of Daniel Lanois’ “The Messenger” from their 1999 album TRIPtych, which took on an exciting new life with the orchestral accompaniment. “Heaven Coming Down” and “Save Me, with Leonard Cohen’s “Hallelujah” mixed in the middle, was also a major standout, showcasing the raw energy that The Tea Party is known for. Jeff Martin’s use of a violin bow on his Gibson Les Paul was even more fitting on this night. You could really feel the emotion and apathy in Save Me when the bow hit the strings to mimic a violin. It added to the intense apologetic theme of the song.

Martin, at one point, addressed the crowd, saying that he never imagined being able to bring a Tea Party symphony show to his hometown of Windsor. He also mentioned his father was in the audience, for whom he dedicated a song to, making for a true homecoming for the former Windsorite, who now lives in Australia.

The encores, “Winter Solstice” and “Sister Awake,” were the perfect ending to a truly remarkable evening of almost two hours. Surprisingly, many of the song choices throughout the evening were the bands more moody and expressive tracks, creating one of the band’s most emotional performances to date.

Having a full symphony on stage at Caesars Windsor was truly a once-in-a-lifetime experience for both rock and classical music fans. The International Symphony Orchestra from Sarnia added a new dimension to the music and elevated the performance to a whole new level. The unique classical score was a collaboration between The Tea Party’s Stuart Chatwood and SOCAN president and composer, Marc Ouellette, and was a testament to their musical expertise and creativity. Stu bounced around from bass guitar to keyboards throughout the night, often glancing at the massive orchestra behind him.

The 40-piece semi-professional orchestra, based in Sarnia and Port Huron, Mich., performed with the band in both Windsor and Sarnia (the night after).

The performance would not have been complete without the rhythms of Jeff Burrows on the drums. Jeff’s huge drum sound added a powerful tribal sound to the performance and helped drive the energy of the music. Many would argue that Jeff is an animal on the drums and one of the best rock drummers in the country. His performance at Caesars Windsor tonight was as powerful and emotional as ever and was clearly a testament to his skill and passion.

The addition of the symphony created an atmosphere that was both moody and emotional, and the orchestral arrangements added depth and richness to The Tea Party’s sound. The crowd was captivated by the powerful blend of rock and symphony, and it was clear that the performance was a true collaboration between the band and the orchestra.

This was not just a concert, but a musical experience that showcased the best of both worlds. The Tea Party and the International Symphony Orchestra created a unique and dynamic performance that was unlike anything else. It truly was a once in a lifetime evening of music.

The shows, intended to celebrate those who had worked on the front lines during the pandemic, were put together by YUNITY, a not-for-profit festival company sponsored by the Laborer’s International Union of North America (LIUNA). Funds also benefitted Transition to Betterness.

The Tea Party with the International Symphony Orchestra
The Colosseum
Windsor, ON
Friday, February 3, 2023

Photos by Dan Boshart


  • Temptation
  • Psychopomp
  • Gone
  • White Water Siren
  • Oceans
  • Correspondences
  • The Ocean at the End
  • Walking Wounded
  • Release
  • Mantra
  • Requiem
  • The Messenger
  • Heaven Coming Down
  • Save Me / Hallelujah / Save Me


  • Winter Solstice
  • Sister Awake

Tea Party & International Symphony - Windsor 2023

Tea Party & International Symphony - Windsor 2023

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