Obliquestra was founded on May Day 2021 in New Orleans, as live music began sprouting from the ashes of the pandemic. Virtuoso fiddler, guitarist, musical sawist, and all-around showbiz juggernaut Dr. Sick—a member of the Squirrel Nut Zippers and several more notable bands—called his former bandmate and accordionist David Symons—founder of New Orleans’ The Salt Wives, Klezervation Hall, Vermont’s Brass Balagan, and more. David then called Susanne Ortner, a Bavarian master klezmer, Brazilian choro, and jazz clarinetist.

Together, with banjoist Aaron Gunn and a series of bassists, they began to meet under a mulberry tree in David’s backyard, playing whatever they most wanted to. Moldovan klezmer, Brazilian choro, New Orleans jazz, and Russian and French waltzes are just a few of the genres that tickled their respective and collective fancies. Festival of Fools will be Obliquestra’s Vermont debut.