Husband and wife team, Matt and Cynthia, met as music majors at Butler University in Indianapolis. Married in 1997, they started running their own performing business in 2005.
Matt Gruel takes on many roles within Nostalgia Entertainment (business manager, Festive Singers musical director, resident pianist and singer). He holds a Bachelor of Music degree in Music Theory and Composition (with an emphasis in Piano) from Butler University.
For the past twenty years, he has been on staff at churches as Minister of Music, where he has sung, played piano, directed and arranged music. He has also been seen playing piano at Tommy Guns Garage Dinner Theatre and aboard the Spirit of Chicago Cruise Lines.
He has also music directed theatre productions in the area. Some of his favorites were The Spitfire Grill and Ordinary Days at Steel Beam Theatre in St. Charles along with Carrie: The Musical and Les Miserables at the School of Performing Arts in Naperville.
As a professional composer, he has written and arranged both traditional and contemporary music for a number of different venues. Matt is a proud member of Chicago Cabaret Professionals (CCP).
Cynthia Fortune Gruel
Cynthia is a Chicago-based actress, singer, dancer, and spokesperson. On stage, her work includes productions with Paramount Theatre, Chicago Folks Operetta, Light Opera Works, Theater at the Center, Steel Beam Theatre, Drury Lane Evergreen Park, Music on Stage and Northbrook Musical Theatre for Young Audiences. Some of her favorite theatrical roles include Shelby in “The Spitfire Grill”, Daisy in “Ball at the Savoy,” Kate in “Kiss Me, Kate,” Sally in “You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown”, Ilona in “She Loves Me”, and Claire in "Ordinary Days". For over a decade, she “kicked up her heels” playing Trixie at Chicago’s long-running Tommy Guns Garage Dinner Theater.
As a trade-show spokesperson, she has presented for many corporations including Konica Minolta, Fed-Ex Kinkos, Agilent Technologies, Abbvie, Aastra, US Cellular and Optum. She can also be seen gigging around Chicagoland for corporate events with various production companies. She is a proud graduate of Butler University with a degree in Vocal Performance and Theatre minor. Cynthia is also a proud member of Chicago Cabaret Professionals (CCP).