Chris Allard is a freelance guitarist based in London. He has performed at major festivals and venues including the Royal Albert Hall, the Pyramids and Great Sphinx (Cairo), the Barbican, Montreux Jazz Festival, Ronnie Scott’s, Nuremberg Festival, Hackney Empire, O2 Arena London, Midem Festival Cannes, Friends of Jordan Festival, The Queen Elizabeth Hall, Beiteddine Arts Festival (Lebanon), Edinburgh Festival, Bahrain Spring of Culture Festival, Duoro Jazz Festival (Portugal), The Royal Festival Hall. He has also played live on TV and radio, and appeared on numerous albums.
Chris has performed/recorded with Jacqui Dankworth, Sheridan Smith, Charlie Wood, Gwyneth Herbert, Dave O’Higgins, Dame Cleo Laine, Sir John Dankworth, Omar Kamal, Jamie Cullum, Mike Walker, Dylan Howe, Steve Furst, Gwilym Simcock, the BBC Big Band, Steve Waterman to name a few.
He also leads his own group, which has performed at festivals and respected venues in the UK and Europe including the International Guitar Festival, Ronnie Scott’s, Bonington Theatre, Maison Musique Torino Italy, the Pizza Express Jazz Club Soho, London, has had press and radio-play as far afield as Portugal and Los Angeles and received critical acclaim including four stars in Guitarist.
Invisible Landscape was released in July 2016 on independent label Perdido Records, with a launch gig at Pizza Express Dean St in London. Chris’s fourth album as a bandleader, it received excellent reviews; praised for impeccable performances, and a distinctive melodic gift.
‘a non-cliched linear improviser of great originality and talent…an excellent recording of modern music full of variety, intensity and interest.’ Jazzviews
‘In an age of instant downloads and short attention spans, ‘Invisible Landscape’ is a brave album built on artistic integrity, framed by Allard’s inventive musical vision and realized by the band’s technical and improvisational excellence’ ★★★★ Get Ready to Rock
Amongst other current projects Chris performs around the world with Palestinian singer Omar Kamal, with recent performances at the Pyramids in Cairo with the incredible backdrop of the Pyramids and the Great Sphinx, at televised concerts with big band and the Lebanese Symphony Orchestra in the middle east; at Beiteddine Festival at the presidential palace in Lebanon, and to 6000+ live at the Roman Amphitheatre in Amman Jordan, amongst others. He continues to play regularly with Memphis legend Charlie Wood, appearing on his recently recorded new album, to be released in 2018, as well as performing in various other groups such as the Fugata Quintet and the brand new contemporary tango group Almagro Ensemble led by award-winning pianist John Turville.
Throughout April 2018 Chris toured with Olivier award-winning actress/singer Sheridan Smith OBE, performing as featured soloist with big band and strings on a sell-out tour with venues including the Royal Albert Hall. Previous recent tours include arena tours with Il Divo in 2016 and 2014; including the O2 Arena in London. Throughout 2015 Chris toured with multi-platinum singer Russell Watson, the biggest selling UK classical artist of all time, with more than 80 sell-out concerts. Chris was playing classical, steel-string acoustic and electric guitars, as well as electric bass and mandolin. Also in 2014 Chris toured with Brit Award winning trumpeter Alison Balsom, venues including the Royal Albert Hall.
"One of the great guitarists in this country"Jamie Cullum