Driven by violinist Alana, chased by Kirri (double bass) and Sofia (accordion), Vardos play folk and Romany music learnt from Rroma musicians during their Eastern European travels.

Photo by Melisa Savickas

Friday 29 December 2023


Vardos at Open Studio Bar and Crêperie, 204 High St Northcote

Vardos play folk and Romany music and have learnt from Rroma (Gypsy) and folk musicians in Hungary and Romania during their travels in Eastern Europe. Based in Naarm Melbourne, Australia, the band has toured internationally and appeared in film and television.

All ticket holders for seated feature shows have a seat with shared tables

Click here to book! Tickets $25 + BF

NO REFUND POLICY - all tickets are non-refundable and non-transferable

19-21 January 2024

Illawarra Folk Festival

Bulli showground, Wollongong NSW

Three days of concerts and events featuring artists from around the world as well as from the neighbourhood.

Program details soon!

Friday 3 February


Vardos at Open Studio Bar and Crêperie, 204 High St Northcote

More details soon!

Sunday 18 February 2024


Vardos at Castlemaine Taproom

9 Walker St Castlemaine

Driven by Alana's wild violin, chased by accordion and double bass, Vardos play folk and Romany music learnt from Rroma (Gypsy) musicians during their travels in Eastern Europe. Based in Melbourne, Australia, the band has toured internationally and appeared in film and television.
Join us in the beer garden, weather permitting, or inside this lovely venue with great meals and beverages. Free entry

performances since 2012 include


Performances since 2012 include: 

Music From The Wetlands, Alphington Sunday 19 November 2023

Fawkner Festa CB Smith Reserve, City of Merri-bek with Alana Hunt, violin, Sofia Chapman on accordion and Frances Evans on double bass.

Czech and Slovak Film Festival of Australia 2023 Closing Night Event @ Classic Cinemas

Friday 22 September 2023, 7pm

Melbourne Recital Centre & Vardos present:

Music to Spy to

This performance in Primrose Potter Salon delves into the intriguing true story of a violinist turned spy catcher. Ion Petre Stoican was an ambitious violinist in 1970s Romania during the Ceaușescu dictatorship. Snubbed by the musical elite of Bucharest, he worked his way into the inner circle by catching a western spy. Instead of asking for a cash reward from the government, Ion requested to be allowed to record an album with the leading Bucharest musicians of the day.

Vardos presents this thrilling musical story with Alana on violin, Sofia on accordion and Maxine on double bass, exploring echoes of the Ceaușescu regime that can be felt at every turn. FB event here

Primrose Potter Salon Corner Southbank Boulevard and Sturt St, Southbank, traditional land of the Wurundjeri-willam people

Friday 8th -Sunday 10th September 2023

To the Balkans and Beyond 

This exciting weekend at Queenscliff included workshops from a wonderful and talented group of people such as Phil Carroll (Arabic tunes/songs), Matt Stonehouse (Percussion) Linsey Pollak (Macedonian tunes) Jasna Dolic (Sevdah singing) Sofia & Alana from Vardos (Romanian/Hungarian music) and Briohny May (Belly dancing). jamming, a community dance led by Terry Cole and the Footscray Gypsy Orchestra, an afternoon show and the opportunity to connect with other music enthusiasts.

Dandenong Market EuroFEAST 13 August 2023

Fonó Hungarian Dance Group - Táncház / Dance House at Hungarian Community Centre, with visiting teacher Bianka Balatoni, 5 August

Vardos Trio at Open Studio, 21 July 2023

Montsalvat WinterFest 2023 on lands of the Wurundjeri-willam people


Sat 10 June 2023 Vardos at Local Lunch Club Kathleen Syme Library

Sat 27 May 2023: the final Vardos Trio at Korona Csárda

13 May 2023 The Hungarian Dance House Revival. Celebrating 50 years of the Táncház (Dance House) movement in Hungary,  with Hungarian dancers Hien Albert and Károly Albert and multi-instrumentalist Maxine Sutcliffe. Primrose Potter Salon Melbourne Recital Centre


Yackandandah Folk Festival 2023, photo by Dan

WOMADelaide 2023 with Taraf de Caliu (Romania)

5 people playing musical instruments onstage and audience standing

Photo Philip Griffin

Opening of ADELAIDE FRINGE 2023: Sounds of Romania & Hungary - Vardos (Vic)

HAT's Courthouse Cultural Centre, 4 St Vincent St, Auburn 5451, Ngadjuri Country. Established 13yrs ago Hats (Heritage Arts and Traditions) presents multiple events annually at the beautiful heritage listed Courthouse offering a variety of styles and unique events for South Australian's to enjoy.

Vardos Year of the Rabbit tribute- celebrating Lunar New Year 31 Jan 2023. The Drunken Poet

Portarlington Mussel Festival 2023Wathaurung country with Maxine Sutcliffe on double bass

Many evenings at Korona Csárda Hungarian Restaurant: click here to watch video snippets.

Polyfonix Intercultural Music Festival at The Estonian House, 43 Melville Road, Brunswick West, VIC, Australia. Presented by On The Road Again, 3ZZZ & The Boite. Featuring Alex & Tash Vargas, Sounds of Greece with Con Kalamaras, Senes Flamenco, Vardos, Zourouna and Zulya and The Children of the Underground. Click here for video footage!

Vali Myers: Her Life and Work State Library of Victoria, Conversation Quarter, a screening of a documentary about beloved Melbourne artist, dancer and free spirit Vali Myers, followed by a discussion with guests film director Ruth Cullen and art historian Tracy Spinks, as well as live folk and Romany music performed by Vardos with Frances Evans on double bass.

4 Nov 2022 at Primrose Potter SalonMelbourne Recital Centre: Birds and Beasts of the East: In Eastern European culture, anthropomorphism has long been used as a symbolic way of telling stories and dictating the rules of society. Listen to the music of this Vardos concert and decide for yourself if the bird will be free or the goat’s milk will curdle.

October fest with Vardos at Korona Csárda Hungarian Restaurant

Spring Sculpture Prize Opening Party Lot 19 Dja Dja Wurrung Country, Castlemaine

Closing night of the 2022 Czech and Slovak Film Festival

Vardos duo (accordion and violin) at Philippe restaurant Melbourne for Bastille Day and NYE 2022.

Firelight Festival, Docklands, Melbourne’s epic winter festival, July 2022

Montsalvat WinterFest Eltham, Melbourne, June 2022

Our Wyreena Music Cafe debut! 27 May 2022 at Wyreena Community Arts Centre, Croydon. Alana Hunt - violin, Sofia Chapman - accordion, viola, hurdy gurdy, vocals ; Maxine Sutcliffe - double bass.

ANTFARM - an Anthropomorphosis returned to Fawkner Food Bowls! 29 April-1 May 2022, 2 Creedon St Fawkner 3060. ANTFARM—an Anthropomorphosis is a large walkthrough installation, a bizarre ant world of art, shadow puppets and optical illusions with theatre performances and music; peep into small and large lit tunnels, you might see a tiny ant thought projected there. An interesting, fun way to find out many things about Ants. Supported by Arts Merri-bek and Coffex Coffee. On Sunday 1 May Hira Salman's art mural was also unveiled at the Food Bowls at 12pm, with music by Vardos, supported by a Merri-bek City Council Summer Community Event Grant.

North Richmond FESTIVAL OF WOMEN Dhangawagu (festival) Baggarrook (women) on Wurundjeri Country 26 March 2022

Windfire Music Festival, Geelong

Vardos celebrate female musicians: International Women's Day 2022 at The Drunken Poet

Vardos pay tribute to Eastern European accordionists, violinists, double bassists, violists and singers we have met and learnt from including Esma Redžepova-Teodosievska, Márta Sebestyén, Salamon Beáta and others who were before our time such as Romica Puceanu, Panna Cinka and Maria Tănase.

Primrose Potter SalonMelbourne Recital CentreA Window into every Village 18 Feb 2022: The song ‘Ablakomba besütött a holdvilág’ (moonlight shone in my window) is famous throughout Hungary and Romania and yet is played differently in every village.

Vardos January 2022 residency at Sandringham Rotunda and Sandringham Village Square

Summer Nights Drone Show: Docklands 2022

Au revoir 2021! NYE Celebration at Philippe restaurant, Melbourne. Dining under the stars in George Parade. 

17 Dec 2021 The Seduceaphones w/ Vardos Trio - Bar Open, 317 Brunswick St Fitzroy  

A residency at Kensington Shopping precinct, Saturdays in December 2021

Afternoons at Castlemaine Taproom

11 December 2021 La Mama War-Rak/Banksia Festival commemorates the return of her iconic Carlton home. Original music from Sofia Chapman’s darkly comic La Mama plays, performed live by Sofia, Alana Hunt and Kirri Büchler from Vardos Trio on violin, accordion and double bass, and vocalist Penny Larkins as Viscountess Narcissa. Watch snippets here and with Penny Larkins here.

Entertaining Countess Dracula online film premiere

In 17th Century Hungary, the infamous Blood Countess was convicted of gruesome crimes of torture and depravity with her young maids. Was she a bloodthirsty monster or the victim of a sinister political intrigue? As the net closes in on the Countess, her musicians come closer to the truth, only to find themselves trapped in a castle of absurd horrors. In the tradition of the silent era, directed by short film-maker Nathan Godkin, with a breathtaking musical score by Vardos, 'Entertaining Countess Dracula' tells a daringly bloody and comical tale of the woman behind the myth of the first female vampire.

With a spooky introduction by writer and performer Sofia Chapman, and violinist and actress Alana Hunt. Film is approximately 30 minutes, PG: Parental guidance recommended.

Fawkner Festa 2021, CB Smith Reserve. 

ANTFARM: An Anthropomorphosis premiere: Ants are one of the species on earth that form large societies/ groups. There is much about them that is similar to the human. Ants are currently working on a large walkthrough installation artwork that will be an interesting and fun way to find out many things about Ants and show what it is like to be an ant. As in Aesop’s folktale ‘The Ant and the Grasshopper’, the grasshoppers will be there too playing their unique music while the ants toil. Ants invited the humans to walk through the Antfarm artwork 24 April 2021. Supported by Merri Health.

Vardos: Music in the Gardens 2021, Albury Botanic Gardens, Wodonga Place, Albury NSW

Wonthaggi International Film Festival 2021

Fish Creek Children’s Literature Festival

The Vardos Cookbook : Local Heroes Series, Primrose Potter SalonMelbourne Recital Centre

From feast to famine, the culinary identity of Eastern Europe can be traced back through song. Vardos delves into the great melting pot of music from Hungary, Romania and their neighbours, stirring up many delicious discoveries to savour. Original arrangements of rarely heard songs about cooking and food provide a glimpse into the region’s wonderful culture. Vardos’s enthusiasm for this scrumptious fare, combined with its stunning musical talents, entices you to journey further and sample every course. Alana Hunt violin, Kirri Büchler double bass, Sofia Chapman accordion/viola/hurdy gurdy.

Gulyásfesztivál! Goulash Festival. Hungarian Community Centre, 760 Boronia Rd Wantirna.

BIG STRINGS FESTIVAL- 22 Brown Alley. Alana - violin, Sofia - viola, Frances Evans- double bass.

Seasonal Gyöngyös Bokréta Táncházok 2021 (dance houses) with live music by Vardos Trio 

Au revoir 2020! NYE Celebration at Philippe restaurant, Melbourne. Dining under the stars in George Parade. Sofia and Alana from Vardos -chansons françaises as well as your Eastern European favourites!

18 Dec 2020, 27 Feb and 1 May 2021; 2 April, 7 and 21 May 2022 Vardos Live @ Korona Csárda Hungarian restaurant Wantirna. 

December 2020 - Vardos Trio in the City of Boroondara, first live public performances since March!

Fri 4th Beswicke Square, Hawthorn, Saturday 5th Ashburton, Sat 12th Union Rd Surrey Hills

Now available as an audioplay, supported by the City of Melbourne COVID-19 Arts Grants

In January 2020, Vardos, La Mama and the Burning Deck Theatre Company presented The Top Secret Violin Case at La Mama Courthouse 349 Drummond Street, Carlton VIC, part of Midsumma Festival. A new play by Sofia Chapman, with Vardos playing live on stage. Lighting Teri Steer. Outside eye Görkem Acaroğlu. Image by Darren Gill.  Romania, 1970 something, in the grip of Ceaușescu's oppressive regime. Enter Brad (played by Sasha Čuha), hoping to escape his American closet and learn Romanian folk music, whilst dodging the secret police, until he encounters an ambitious violinist who will stop at nothing to get to the top ...  'Hilarious, weird, dark and light' Eloise Caleo We had an extremely successful and sold out season! A great review from Stage Whispers - click here.

Vardos were invited to participate in Victorian Seniors Festival reimagined.  Watch the interview and listen to the online performance here! Vardos, Lemony S Theatre and Batton and Broadway, with a special introduction by talented hosts Tristan Meechan and Bec Reid.

From the World to Whittlesea online concertJune 2020. Streamed online, professional artists, musicians including Vardos, poets and storytellers perform live. Overshadowed by the impact of COVID19, the refugee experience is ageless, so while we lament the difficulties of staying home, this concert reminds us of those who have been forced to leave theirs.

Vardos PBS Sounds Like Home - Aired 28 June 2020  PBS Radio 106.7FM As music lovers, we were all ready for a return to normality and live music. In the interim, PBS brought the live vibe direct from artists' homes to yours with Sounds Like Home. Local, diverse and talented musicians from the community, with each session delivering a brand new intimate recording from an artist you love; delivered immediately from artist to listener, including an eclectic performance from local trio Vardos. 

Our duo performance as part of Melbourne Recital Centre's At Home Series, 'At Home With Vardos'. Our doors may be closed, but the music plays on! Alana and Sofia from VARDOS take us into their Palazzo, where the vibrant folk and gypsy music of Eastern Europe is still being played and enjoyed during times of lockdown and isolation in Victoria. Stay tuned for the cute-critter-cameo at the end! This social media recital is supported by Melbourne Recital Centre Performer Support Fund. No matter where you are watching and listening from, we are #HearTogether.

VARDOS were featured in Beats, Ballads and Ballrooms: Darebin Live Music Venues 1955-2020: audio-tour brings listeners to key locations and revealing songs and stories behind venues, past and present! You can also read excerpts of the interviews. Sofia Chapman (Vardos Trio), Rose Turtle Ertler, Achilles Yiangoulli (The Habibis), Paige Black, Tony Lovett (Stray Blacks) Mick Thomas and others discuss the history of Rebetika and Eastern European music in Darebin as well as country, indie, punk, folk and pop venues and scenes. Beats, Ballads and Ballrooms was commissioned and funded by Darebin Arts for HYPERLOCAL and has been produced by Iain McIntyre, Kirstyn Lindsay and Teishan Ahearne. FUSE Darebin festival. Online virtual tour  November 2020-2022

Thurs 12 March 2020  Vardos Live at Oussou- BAR OUSSOU 653 Sydney Rd Brunswick, part of Balkan Festival. This was a fun night and turned out to be the last live performance for a while...

8 March 2020  Port Melbourne Wine and Cheese Festival

28 February 2020 Journey to the Danube Delta, Primrose Potter Salon Melbourne Recital Centre

Vardos journey down the River Danube, winding through countries and making music along the way. Hear the wind blow on the river, generating spinning dances in Slovakian kitchens, fuelling the health spas of Serbia, growing apples and sustaining foxes in Bulgaria, Jewish dancers in Southern Ukraine and a whole region of folk music in Hungary. All presented with the captivating combination of violin, accordion, double bass, viola, hurdy gurdy, and songs in five languages.

Synthesis -Down Under 2019 Tour Nov 2019 Vardos in the all star group 'Sonic Temple' Support act for Macedonian band Thornbury Theatre

 From the Caravan to the Club at Primrose Potter SalonMelbourne Recital Centre 

Vardos trace the beloved Roma musical tradition to its Eastern sources. In contemporary Romania synthesisers and electric violins have crept in, but here Vardos play traditional instruments in the classic ‘Taraf’ formation of violin, accordion and double bass, with vocal laments and ballads in Romanian and Romani (Gypsy) language. These rousing works unearth a trove of mysterious and exotic wonders.

The Final Village Festival at Edinburgh Gardens 2019

From Myth to Masterpiece at Primrose Potter Salon: May 2019. What inspired Bartók, Liszt and Chopin to add folk motifs into their works? Discover the folk traditions behind classical Eastern European masterpieces as Vardos give new life to the original sources of inspiration. Enjoy the classics that reflect ancient beginnings performed on early instruments such as the three-string viola and hurdy gurdy.

2019 Melbourne Taranta Festival with Canzoniere Grecanico Salentino (Italia)

Lost Trades Fair 2019 - Kyneton Victoria

25th Rosebery Festival, Tasmania 2019

MONA Museum of Old and New Art, 655 Main Rd Berriedale, Tasmania 

Goulash Festival, Hungarian Community Centre, Wantirna, Melbourne

St Kilda Festival 10 February 2019

Euraw Stories at Loop Performance Space and Bar, 23 Meyers Place Melbourne

Hungarian Fête, Bocskai Hungarian Centre, 121-123 St Georges Rd Nth Fitzroy


Polish Festival at Federation Square 2017-2018

Thursday 15 November 2018 - Big bread, big boots - Music of the Hungarian plains, kitchens, and village dance halls. Melbourne Recital Centre, Primrose Potter Salon:

2 metre high loaves of bread and laments of boots without boot stiffener, sorrow over homelands and missing lovers, the Hungarians use music to express all the highs and lows of life. Haunting laments, pentatonic peasant songs and virtuosic and crazily fast dance pieces capture the essence of Hungary.

Vardos residency at Claypots Barbarossa Salon 79 Hardware Lane, Melbourne

Vardos at 'Spiegel et Luna': The Famous Spiegeltent at iconic Luna Park, St Kilda

Festival of Cultures, Louise Multicultural Community Centre

2018  St Ives Medieval Faire, NSW

Vardos 25th Anniversary Show - Django @ Camelot. 103 Railway Pde Marrickville, Sydney NSW

Biennale of Australian Art Opening Night, Ballarat Mining Exchange

Czech and Slovak Film Festival of Australia at ACMI, 2018

Memo Music Hall  St Kilda with belly dancer extraordinaire Rachel Brice (USA) 2018

Wangaratta Hall presented by Melbourne Recital Centre

Boite World Music Cafe Eltham 2018 25 year anniversary

Docklands Firelight Festival 2017-18

From the Hungarian plains to the Transylvanian alps, Melbourne Recital Centre Salon June 2018

Inhospitable mountains and wide rivers isolated certain Eastern European communities preserving their unique culture and music. Quirky instruments and wild and wacky chordal and rhythmic combinations have evolved. Along with their usual line-up, in this concert Vardos bring you the distinct tones of the rustic hurdy gurdy, and the portable Jaws harp, the milk jug, spoons and vocal percussion used by Romany people when other instruments weren't available, the flat bridge viola and 2 string double bass of Palatka where only major chords are played and the open tuned guitar, drum and fiddle combination from Maramures on the Ukrainian border.

Dandenong World Fare 2018, Croydon Multicultural Festival 2018, Midsumma Festival Park Lounge 2018

Benalla Festival 2017, Bonegilla 70th year celebrations

Vardos Album Launch at The Spotted Mallard, Brunswick, Melbourne Australia

Beltane Festival 2017, Wolfgang's Palace, 155 Nalangil Rd, Nalangil Victoria

Boroondara Seniors Festival variety concert 2017, Hawthorn Arts Centre

Sunday 24 September 2017 8.30pm Vardos cameo appearance on The Doctor Blake Mysteries, Series 5 Episode 2, 'Sorrow Songs' ABC TV

Sept 2017 Smiths Alternative , 76 Alinga street, Canberra. Canberra Launch of our 5th CD, Palazzo Party, with special guest Tim Meyen on hammered dulcimer

Aug 2017 Vardos Brisbane CD Launch at BEMAC, with MZAZA. Queensland Multicultural Centre

14 July 2017 Melbourne Recital Centre Salon, 'Romania- celebrations, rituals and magic'- Vardos with Tim Meyen

'City Sounds' Queen Street Mall Stage, Brisbane, QLD 2017

Hungarofeszt Hungarian festival and Goulash Festival, Hungarian Community Centre, Wantirna

Queen Victoria Night Market

Vampire Ball 2017

Bastille Day 2016 and the first New Year's Eve party at Philippe Restaurant

Coburg Night Market, Bridges Reserve, Coburg

10 year celebrations of Open Studio Bar and Crêperie featuring Lolo Lovina (Sydney)

Speakeasy, Flinders St accompanied by world renowned Serpent Dancer, Ronicka (photo Brig Bee)

Eat Pierogi Make Love with Vardos and VULGARGRAD at Gasometer Hotel, Collingwood

Falls Festival Byron Bay, Dec 2015- Jan 2016

HATS Auburn Courthouse Adelaide Fringe 2016, Mesopotamia Festival 2016

Szent Iván Folk Fest, Sopron and Pajta Galéria, Salföld, Hungary 2015

L'Équitable Café Marseille, Guinguette Le Tournebelle Narbonne and Sainte-Valière residency France 2015

Russian Resurrection Film Festival ACMI, Federation Square

Mullum Music Festival Mullumbimby NSW Australia

Bohemian Cabaret, State Library
DARK MOFO Winter Feast 2014, Hobart, Tasmania: a three-night Bacchanalian banquet.
The Gypsy Crystal Ball at the Spotted Mallard, with Mzaza and Kavisha Mazzella
Falls Festival Marion Bay, Tasmania
The Courtyard Salamanca, Tasmania
The Homestead, Tasmania
Globe to Globe World Music Festival Melbourne
Sydney Road Street Party Brunswick

Caravan Music Club.
Folkworld Fairbridge Festival Western Australia 2013

Peace Concert, Kibble Park, Gosford, NSW
Castlemaine State Festival 2013
Camelot Lounge, Sydney
THISTLE HALL Wellington, New Zealand
KARAVAN! International Gypsy Music Festival
CARNIVALE Wodonga Harmony
The Famous Spiegeltent, Melbourne
Snowy Mountains of Music Festival, NSW
Hamer Hall Arts Centre, Melbourne, Opening concerts

Harvest Festival

Guthries, Adelaide

Courthouse Carnival, South Australia

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