The Queen Extravaganza



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Queen Extravaganza: "Smashing It!"
January 14th 2013



The Queen Extravaganza are 'smashing it' in the opening shows of their 2013 Tour! Be sure to follow our Tour Manager Paul Bond for updates @

Tickets are on sale now for all the remaining dates - head over to now!

Marc Interview With Lancester Online / Tour Kicks Off Tonight in Tarrytown
January 11th 2013


Queen Extravaganza singer finds himself in alignment with Mercury

by MARY ELLEN WRIGHT - Correspondent

Freddie Mercury had already passed away by the time Marc Martel first became aware of Queen.

That was 20 years ago, when the Montreal native saw characters rocking out to "Bohemian Rhapsody" in the film "Wayne's World."

"I really didn't know there was a band called Queen until that movie came out," the 36-year-old singer says.

Martel has certainly done his homework since then.

Starting Friday in Tarrytown, N.Y., Martel will be channeling Mercury's singular voice nightly as part of his second year touring the United States and Canada with The Queen Extravaganza.

The six-member tribute band, whose members were chosen and whose shows are produced by Queen co-founder and drummer, Roger Taylor, plays Hershey Theatre Wednesday night.

Martel, who spent 12 years as part of the Dove Award-winning Christian band Downhere, earned a spot as one of Queen Extravaganza's lead singers through an online contest.

"I heard for years I sound like Freddie .... I never thought it would amount to anything, honestly," Martel says by phone from Philadelphia, where the tribute band has been rehearsing.

"I'm kind of a natural mimic. And even when I try, specifically, not to sound like Freddie Mercury, people tell me I sound like him."

In September 2011, with Downhere a few months from its farewell tour, Martel entered the contest by uploading a video of himself singing Queen's "Somebody to Love."

His resemblance to Mercury -- in face, as well as voice -- propelled his audition to viral-video status; it's been viewed nearly 7.5 million times to date.

The video also caught the attention of Ellen DeGeneres, who invited him to perform on her daytime talk show.

In the end, Martel's video earned enough online contest votes to win him an in-person audition with Taylor, who wound up hiring him for the Extravaganza.

Martel, who lives in Nashville with his wife, Crystal, plays guitar and piano in the tribute band. He shares lead-vocal duties with band mate Jennifer Espinoza.

The band, which Taylor created with Queen guitarist Brian May, toured North America for several weeks last spring and summer, and appeared on last season's "American Idol."

In Hershey, the 90-minute show will deliver 22 classic Queen songs, including "Killer Queen," "Another One Bites the Dust," "We Are the Champions" and "Crazy Little Thing Called Love."

Lots of rarely-seen vintage video of the original members of Queen has been added to the show since last year, Martel notes.

Martel sings like Mercury, but doesn't adopt the late singer's onstage makeup or flamboyant attire -- which, during the band's 1970s and '80s heyday, ranged from short-shorts to skin-tight body suits.

"That was actually one of my first questions when this whole thing started," Martel says, chuckling. "I was little worried that they were going to make me wear a leotard or something."

But Martel strives to sing Queen's songs as Mercury sang them.

"I kind of like the way he sang stuff, so I try to not stray too far from what he did," he adds. "The cool thing is that, when he sang his songs live, he changed the melodies a lot in order to preserve his voice."

Martel, who mostly played guitar and sang behind a microphone stand in Downhere, says the Queen band has helped him develop as a front-man.

"With the Queen Extravaganza, I'm obviously doing the Freddie thing, and I'm roaming around the stage and doing antics and body language and all that," he says. "So it's been a lot of fun coming out of the restrictions of having to stand in one spot all the time."

The members of Downhere have no further plans to tour or record together, Martel says, beyond performing one February gig in Canada.

"It's been a big change," he says. "It's the only career I've had. We've been together 12 years, full time, and never took longer than, probably, three weeks off."

Martel says he will be writing and recording solo work between Queen gigs. His five-song, pop/rock EP, titled "Martel," will be released in a couple of weeks.

He treasures the relationships he has formed with the members of his new band.

"I think we really get along well," he adds. "That's one thing I had some serious apprehension about, because I only toured with one band, ever .... But it's been a lot of fun, and I have some really good friends here.

"To hear Roger Taylor say, 'When I close my eyes, sometimes I feel like Freddie's here,' well, I don't know what to do with that. I can't imagine, as an artist, having lost one of my best friends 20 years ago and this guy comes along who sounds like him and kind of looks like him," Martel says.

"I don't know how I would deal with that, honestly."

Cameras at Huntington Show on Sunday 13th!
January 10th 2013



If you are attending the Queen Extravaganza show in Huntington, New York at The Paramount on Sunday 13th, be sure to look your best and give it your all as we have cameras down there to record the show!

You might even be lucky enough to picked out and spoken too as you make you way in!

The QEX Tour kicks off tomorrow night in Tarrytown. Tickets for all tour dates can be found at

2013 Tour Kicks Off This Friday!
January 7th 2013




The wisdom of that decision is apparent as Queen Extravaganza rips through the layered, symphonic Bohemian Rhapsody. – USA TODAY

“What an amazing storehouse of talent we have unlocked. The standard is mind-blowingly high; it has really been a thrill to discover them.”  - Queen’s Roger Taylor

December , 2012 - (Burbank, CA) -  After making their television debut in front of 20 million viewers on American Idol earlier this year and wrapping up an incredibly successful coast to coast U.S. and Canadian tour last summer, the Queen Extravaganza have announced the first leg of their 2013 tour kicking off on January 11 in Tarrytown, NY.  (see below for full itinerary)

Order Tickets HERE.

"The response to the second tour for the Queen Extravaganza tells us that the word is spreading about this sensational live act!” says Taylor.  “Don't miss them.” 

 The Queen Extravaganza is a spectacular touring concert show designed to take the glorious music and live experience of legendary rock band Queen and bring it to generations of fans.   

 "We did the first 10 years of our career with just the four of us, no additions, you know the technology wasn't there," Taylor says. "We were relying on stripped down adrenalized versions of our songs and our own personalities. But with this band, we continue to push all the musical boundaries with technology that was not available to the four of us originally. This band is a powerhouse of talent. To hear our songs performed by them gives fans a chance to hear them (our songs) now as they could have done then and perhaps technically, even better!!"

Two of Queen’s original bandmates and songwriters—legendary guitarist Brian May and iconic drummer Roger Taylor—are the masterminds behind The Queen Extravaganza.  In addition to their work with Queen, these two musicians’ talents have inspired such legends of modern times as the Foo Fighters, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Katy Perry, and even Lady Gaga, who took her name from one of Taylor’s biggest hit songs.

Taylor personally has taken on the role of producer with long time Queen keyboardist Spike Edney as global music director. Together Taylor and Edney have created the ultimate Queen concert experience in an electrifying road show, which celebrates the band’s music and legacy as performed by some of the best new music talent out there today.  

"We're very proud of our canon of music and you know we'd like that to be represented in an absolutely brilliant way,” says Taylor.  “And not as just traipsing through the hits ... we want to see a really scintillatingly put together show played, you know, almost perfectly."

To guarantee that the touring show matches the fabled design and excitement of Queen at its live best, Taylor has enlisted a heavyweight production team with set design by Mark Fisher and lighting design and video direction by Rob Sinclair.  Fisher has been responsible for some of the most memorable rock concerts ever staged, including The Wall for Pink Floyd plus every Rolling Stones show since 1989. Sinclair has worked with such acclaimed artists as Adele, Peter Gabriel, Mumford and Sons and of course Queen + Adam Lambert. 

The Queen Extravaganza touring band includes musicians selected by Roger Taylor after competing in a unique online talent search. The contestants were voted on by the public during several rounds of online auditions.  The finalists where then flown to Los Angeles for a final in-person audition for Taylor on December 5th, 2011.  

The buzz surrounding the public auditions sparked worldwide interest, with video submissions generating more than 10 million views. Television host Ellen DeGeneres was so impressed with the level of talent that she invited one hopeful contestant to perform his audition on her show (see that video here). That contestant, Montreal native and Nashville based, Marc Martel, secured himself a place in the final band. The rest of The Queen Extravaganza band includes vocalist and QE contestant Jennifer Espinoza, along with bassist Francois Olivier Doyon; guitarists Brian Gresh; drummer Tyler Warren; and keyboardist & musical director Brandon Ethridge.

In a show that runs 90 minutes, The QE band will perform 22 Queen classics, drawn from a list of the band’s biggest all-time chart hits: “Bohemian Rhapsody,” “Another One Bites the Dust,” “Crazy Little Thing Called Love,” “Under Pressure,” “We Will Rock You/We Are the Champions,” “A Kind of Magic,” “Radio Ga Ga,” “Somebody to Love,” and “Killer Queen.” In addition, the show will highlight some of the band’s finest heavy-duty rock-based anthems that have long been the core of their live performances.  Audiences can also expect a healthy dose of early period Queen with songs such as “I’m In Love With My Car” and “You’re My Best Friend” among others. The production will also be boosted visually with the inclusion of never-before-seen video footage from Queen’s extensive archives. The QE band is unique in that it is the only tribute band granted access to this exclusive footage.  In addition, newly created imagery will lend majesty to the show.

 “The Queen Extravaganza is not a traditional tribute show,” says Taylor. “It is a brand new show specially designed to enable these new fans, together with fans of old, to celebrate the music of Queen in a heart-stopping event. It’s very spectacular, it’s very visual, there are going to be some shocks and some tremendous surprises. It will be a rock celebration in the Royal tradition.”  

The Queen Extravaganza tour dates are as follows:

Jan. 11 Tarrytown, NY Music Hall Theatre

Jan. 12 Wallingford, CT Toyota Presents the Oakdale Theatre

Jan. 13 Huntington, NY The Paramount

Jan. 15 Englewood, NJ Bergen Performing Arts Center

Jan. 16 Hershey, PA Hershey Theatre

Jan. 17 Verona, NY Turning Stone Resort Casino

Jan. 18 Hamilton, ON Hamilton Place Theatre

Jan. 20 Ottawa, ON National Arts Center

Jan. 21 Toronto, ON Sony Center for Performing Arts

Jan. 22 Quebec City, QC Capitole du Quebec

Jan. 23 Quebec City, QC Capitole du Quebec

Jan. 25 Quebec City, QC Capitole du Quebec

Jan. 26 Quebec City, QC Capitole du Quebec

Jan. 27 Quebec City, QC Capitole du Quebec

Jan. 29 Sherbrooke, QC Theatre Granada

Jan. 30 Montreal, QC Bell Center

Feb. 1 St. Johh, NB Imperial Theatre

Feb. 2 Moncton, NB Casino Moncton

Feb. 3 Halifax, NS Rebecca Cohn Auditorium

*More dates to be announced

New QEX 2013 Tour Video From Roger Taylor
December 21st 2012


"Onwards and upwards..!"

Tickets are available now from

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