Audra Kubat is a Detroit born singer-songwriter. Self-taught, Kubat began composing music on the piano at the age of eight. In her teens she started putting words to the music. Teaching herself to play the guitar, she began performing in local coffeehouses. In 1999 she created the band, “Stunning Amazon”, and in November of that year released a self-titled album. The band became locally successful and the CD paved the way towards bigger shows and media appearances.
In 2000 Kubat was nominated for five Detroit Music Awards, winning one for Best Folk Artist and another win in 2015 for Best Americana Instrumentalist. Since then, she has received nominations every year since. Kubat continued to perform solo and wrote new material, releasing her first solo effort, “Elixir”. This record proved to be a pivotal force in Kubat's career, and was followed by 'Untitled for Now' in 2003 on my own label, Remedy Records.
This led to signing a record deal with Times Beach Records, with whom she recorded two national records – 'Million Year Old Sand” in 2004, and “Since I Fell in Love with the Music” in 2006. Both records earned positive reviews, appearing in Time-Out NY, NME, Harp Magazine, Hour Detroit, Metro-Times, Real Detroit Weekly, The Detroit News and Detroit Free Press.
Local radio appearances include in-studio performances on WDET (National Public Radio), 89x Homeboy Show, the Mitch Albom Show on WJR, Songwriter's Symposium on WHFR, and the River. Television performances include an appearance on Backstage Pass/PBS, Crystal's Motown Cafe, and 'Detroit Counsel of the Arts Presents: An evening with Singer-songwriter Audra Kubat'.
Some notable performances have been at the Detroit Institute of Arts, the Ann Arbor Film Festival, Detroit Festival of the Arts, Detroit Tastefest, Arts, Eats, and Beats, Dally in the Alley, Ferndale Art Fair, Hamtramck Blow-out, The Ark in Ann Arbor, the Michigan Theater - opening for the great Aimee Mann, and opening for Rodriguez at the famous Amsterdam coffee shop here in Detroit. Nationally, Kubat has played in NYC's famous Bitter End, The Living Room, The Bowery Poetry House, and The Sidewalk Cafe, as well as, Chicago's Common Ground. She has drawn crowds along LA's Venice Beach, on the streets of New Orleans, and along the world's largest garage sale off highway 127.
Kubat has composed music for independent films, The Death of Michael Smith, In-Zero, the surfing documentary High Surf, and scored music for local theater productions at The Players Club, Cliff Bells, the Zeitgeist Theater, 1515 Broadway, and the Abreact Theater. She created and performed an original score to accompany a massive projection-mapping spectacle on the facade of the Detroit Public Library’s at last year’s Dlectricity, Festival of Lights.
As a dedicated and involved member of her community, Kubat has been a member of the local Non-profit group, United Peace Relief, where she helped feed the homeless living in the city by distributing food and clothing. She also teaching music to children from the area, donating lessons and time to help create inspiration within young people. In addition, she taught at the nationally recognized School of Rock. There she helped young musicians develop their skills in writing, performing, and technical proficiency. Further, Kubat taught music to 5 and 6 year olds at Capuchin Soup Kitchen in Detroit.
Currently, Kubat is teaching songwriting as a part of InsideOut Literary Arts Project, a local arts organization that helps place artists in classrooms to share, teach, and help inspire. She also works with Living Arts Detroit where she teaches Science through Music and Movement and works with pre-k students in collaboration with the national organization - Wolf Trap. In addition, Kubat is a songwriting tutor at DIME, Detroit Institute for Music Education, a music college where she instructs young songwriters to hone their craft and develop storytelling strategies.
During an internship with InsideOut Literary Arts Project, Kubat went through an intensive training program called VTS or Visual Thinking Strategies. This training provided her with important skills that allowed her to facilitate a workshop (pictured on the left) made possible by a partnership between InsideOut and the DIA. Through this opportunity, Kubat was able to lead a group of teaching artists in the creation of a lesson plan for young writers incorporating the VTS process. This included overseeing scheduling, multiple visits to study our chosen art work in the 30 Americans exhibit, and the collection of all information from our brainstorming sessions. The workshop concluded with a guided writing session, followed by an open stage where writers shared their work and received feedback. As a part of this program, she created a poem to perform in collaboration with another teaching artist and presented it in the Rivera Court of the DIA, and again as a part of Detroit's Noel Night. Here is a link to the lesson plan created for this workshop. Kubat was able to use her experience as a teaching artist and her work as a student of English to choose appropriate language that best represented the ideas of the group, and which best articulated the lessons clearly.
Thom Jurek, All Music Guide wrote, “Kubat is an iconoclastic songwriter: her methods of composition and articulation are unlike anybody else’s on the scene…Million Year Old Sand is a rare recording; it exists in a vacuum as far as popular music is concerned, but it does so willingly, by articulating with grace and aplomb those hidden places that defy easy categorization or easy placement. This may appear to be a self-reflective album, but in reality, is an offering of stark and beautiful reality that possesses enough experience and aspiration to be shared, as well as.”
Nationally acclaimed poet and singer-songwriter, David Blair, wrote, “Audra Kubat is a force of nature; a strong wind that blows past and transcends fads; a flower that's blossomed from coffeehouse gigs into larger theater and festival performances. Audra wears her influences—Joni, Miles, Billie, and Nick Drake like a coat of many colors rewoven into a ‘ruggedly pretty’ and haunting style all her own. It's a talent that's earned her a loyal following, airtime; stellar reviews in local and national press and 10 Detroit Music Awards nominations including a win for Outstanding Folk Artist 2001. Audra's played Detroit's best venues, as well as gigs in galleries and bars from Chicago to New York to Tennessee and back. Forces, by definition, move. Audra's force is centrifugal, spinning out from its singer/songwriter center into a myriad of other talents.”