Live Music

Laporta’s is committed to presenting the very best in local jazz. Bringing a variety of the best available singers and musicians to our stage nightly for over twenty years, emerging as a fixture on the local Jazz scene in the early 1990's. Featured are regular performances by such highly acclaimed singers as Sharon Clark, Patrice Ferris and Ester Haynes. Laporta's books a range of music styles and Jazz, including Be Bop, Scat, Big Band, Classical, Fusion, Dixieland and Gospel, occasionally even a hint of Bluegrass. Live performances occur nightly during dinner service and after, seven nights a week. See our calendar for scheduled performers and show times.

Walt Johnson Trio returns to Sundays

  • Monday: 6:00 – 9:00pm Jim West Piano
  • Tuesday: 6:00 – 9:00pm Straight ahead Jazz, Piano with Antonio James
  • Wednesday: 6:00 – 9:00pm 1st Steve Ragsdale, 2nd Ken Kilpatrick, 3rd Esther Haynes, 4th James Bazen
  • Thursday: 6:00 – 9:00pm Ken Kilpatrick Trio
  • Friday: 7:30 – 11:00pm The Satin Doll Quartet
  • Saturday: 7:00 – 11:00pm Sharon Clark Trio, or featured artist Steve Washington
  • Sunday Brunch: 11:30am – 3:00pm 1st Antonio James, 2nd Steve Ragsdale, 3rd Steve Zubrick, 4th Steve Ragsdale
  • Sunday Dinner: 6:00 – 9:00pm Walt Johnson Trio
Musicians and singers wishing to perform in Laporta’s Jazz Room should send press kits with demos to:
Laporta’s Restaurant
1600 Duke Street
Alexandria, Virginia

The Musicians

Sharon Clark

Sharon Clark began her professional career with the Bottle Caps doing promotional work for the Coca Cola Company. The other "Bottle Cap" was her twin sister, Sharee. Leaving Coke to fend for itself. She has since performed at such jazz and non-jazz venues as Blues Alley, the National Press Club and Twins Lounge in Washington, D.C. and Sweet Basel in New York City. Equally adept with jazz, blues, and gospel, Clark has a husky but mellow voice with good phrasing and diction. She is also a fine interpreter of lyrics. Listing Sarah Vaughan, Johnny Hartman, Ella Fitzgerald as musical influences, Clark continues to work in the Washington, D.C. area.

Sandra Y. Johnson

Sandra is a native Washingtonian and became interested in singing jazz as a student of the Elliston Jazz Studies Workshop under the direction of Ronnie Wells and Ron Elliston. She also studied privately with the late Calvin J. Jones, University of the District of Columbia's Coordinator of Jazz Studies. She has appeared annually at the Fish Middleton Jazz Scholarship (FMJS) Fund? East Coast Jazz Festival. In February 2004, Sandra released her debut CD entitled, "Steppin' Out". Sandra was featured at the U Street Jazz Appreciation Month celebration at The Historic Lincoln Theatre in April 2004. Sandra has performed at the historic Blues Alley Club in Washington, DC (Georgetown) and Solo at the Kennedy Center. She regularly performs with well-known jazz musicians Vincent Smith, Wes Biles, DeAndrey Howard, John Nunley, Jeffrey Neal, James King, Jamal Brown, Lenny Robinson, Wayne Wilentz, Larry Willis, Steve Novosel. Sandra Y. Johnson is the 2nd Place Winner of the 2006 Billie Holiday Vocal Competition held in Baltimore, MD on July 23, 2006. Sandra still sings the first Sunday of each month at the Gospel Rescue Mission in Washington, DC.

Sara Jones

Jazz vocalist Sara Jones has been delighting audiences nationwide since she began singing professionally in 2001. Praised by critics for her trademark 'lush vocals,' and her 'velvet embrace' of the music. Sara beguiles and charms her listeners at every performance. The first place winner of the 2004 Billie Holiday Vocal Competition, Sara has toured nearly all 50 states and performed in numerous concert halls across the country. Currently, she is a featured artist on the newly released album by The Young Brothers entitled Tales of Time, which is creating serious buzz among jazz critics. Sara has performed as a soloist with the National Symphony Orchestra, Cincinnati Pops Orchestra, and Ravinia Festival Orchestra, under the batons of Emil de Cou and Erich Kunzel. An additional highlight includes a solo performance on the Esplanade with Keith Lockhart and the Boston Pops Orchestra. Sara began her musical career as a pianist. At age 14, she was playing professionally and by 18, won first prize in the W.A. Virts Piano Concerto Competition. She received her B.A. in Music at St. Mary's College of Maryland and earned her M.M. in Piano Accompanying at the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music. After graduation she chose to pursue a professional vocal career. Sara lives in the Baltimore/Washington, D.C area

Nicholas Mack

Nick Mack, top manager at Sharp 9 Entertainment, LLC is a graduate of the University of the Arts in Philadelphia, Pa, where he received his bachelors degree in Jazz and Contemporary music. Along with the piano, Mack also studied classical voice, song writing and audio engineering. Mack regularly performs as one of the house pianist at Laporta?, a restaurant in Old Town Alexandria, Virginia and the HR-57 Center for the Preservation of jazz and blues in the District of Columbia. His other performance venues include the Ritz Carlton Hotel, the Fairmont Hotel, Kinkead? and Marcel? restaurants, all located in the District. Mack? musical and business talents are gaining recognition. The Philadelphia Chapter of the National Academy of Recording Arts and Sciences (NARAS) presented him with the collegiate award for outstanding achievement and excellence in the fields of music, music business and record engineering. Since returning from performing a successful tour in Japan he is among other things, presently working on the musical scores of several independent films.

Peter Edelman

Peter Edelman has developed into somewhat of a fixture at Laporta's playing as a solo performer and as regular member of multiple trios that perform in the restaurant. Peter began his music career playing classical piano at age seven; he later added jazz and blues to his repertoire. Having been born and raised in Alexandria Peter has performed in every major and minor jazz club in the D.C. area, in the last three decades Peter has performed alongside many of the most influential musicians in Washington. Peter has performed throughout the world and most recently in Istanbul, Turkey; yet always finds his way back to his roots on the east coast and the Washington metropolitan Jazz scene.

Satin Doll Trio

The Satin Doll Trio is an elegant ensemble that performs in the intimate "supper club" jazz style made popular by artists such as Julie London, Sarah Vaughan, and Peggy Lee during the early 1950's. They have appeared on the stages of the John F. Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts, the Corcoran Gallery? Armand Hammer Auditorium, and have made television appearances on the BET Jazz channel programs "Jazz Central" and "Impressions". The group makes regular appearances at prestigious venues throughout the Washington D.C. area and Eastern United States and has received exceptional reviews from the Washington Post, the Washington Times, and from

Martini Red and the Dixieland Pixies

Since Martini Red first came together we've had trouble describing exactly what we do. Whatever we've decided to call it, the focus has always been on finding good, fun songs from the American repertoire and adding our own twist to them, taking vintage jazz, Western Swing, standards, and blend it with a healthy dose of blues, ragtime, even bluegrass. The result is a unique blend that's sometimes fast and danceable, sometimes slow and listenable, but always a reflection of our honest love for the music. The band got its start in 1996 when two longtime friends, singer/guitarist Tony Brussat and bassist Nick Smiley, got together with mandolinist James Key and began exploring their fascination with improvised acoustic music. Soon the group was gigging regularly at local venues and events and receiving critical acclaim. Martini Red continues on its original mission of bringing the best of vintage jazz to a modern audience. In 1999 Martini Red was nominated for a Wammie for Best Traditional Jazz group; in 2001 Nick was nominated for Best Traditional Jazz Male Vocalist. The band recorded its first CD, entitled We Three in 2001, with the help of drummer Norm Thorne.

Esther Haynes

Esther Haynes is a vocalist and guitarist residing in Washington, DC. Her vocal styles range from vintage jazz to swing, blues, and bluegrass. She has been nominated for several Washington Area Music Awards. In 2003 she received a WAMMIE for Big Band Vocalist. Her band affiliations include Hokum Jazz, Martini Red and the Tom Cunningham Orchestra. In 2001 she recorded a cd of vintage vocal tunes in tribute early jazz vocalists such as Alberta Hunter, Billie Holiday, Bessie Smith, Ma Rainey, Lil Green, Ella Fitzgerald, Memphis Minnie, and others. The cd has received favorable press as well as airplay on Hot Jazz Saturday Night and Mary Cliff's WETA program. In 2004 she released a second cd of standards, swing, and bossas entitled "Approach Note". Originally from Virginia, she learned folk and bluegrass in her youth. Later she attended Berklee College of Music in Boston where she studied voice and professional music. She spent two years in Israel where she fronted a group called "The Cotton Club Band" featuring jazz guitarist David Matarasso and drummer Ilan Katchke. Esther teaches guitar, voice and banjo in Takoma Park, MD. She holds a Master of Education Degree from Marymount University in Arlington, VA as well as a Diploma in Professional Music and Voice from Berklee College of Music in Boston, MA. Contact Esther at

Janine Carter

This Pennsylvania native cannot remember a time when music was not a part of her very existence Since September 2001 Janine has worked with Local Jazz musical talents Ronnie Wells and Ron Elliston. Audiences have been delighted with her performances at "Twins Jazz" the U street Jazz series concerts held at "The Islander" in Washington D.C., The FMJS East Coast Jazz Festival and The legendary Washington DC supper Club Blues Alley as well as several White House Events.