Len Penton
Region: Newfoundland & Labrador
Genre: Celtic

From an airport, not an outport, Len Penton is another runway from Gander where the Presentation Nuns and Mrs. Reid taught him piano with Trinity College of Music materials. He played in several high school bands, including one with Buddy Kevin Blackmore. He also sang with a hippie choral group in Gander, The Baker's Dozen. When he came to town to attend Memorial University, he got a B.A. while helping with the very first meetings of the St. John's Folk Music Club and also volunteering at the very first Bannerman Park folk festivals. Len played tons of music over the years with wife/life partner harper Deborah Clarke but he also spent 14 years playing with the late Dorman Ralph and the last 20 years with Art Stoyles. With Art Len helped with two CD projects, The World Accordion to Art and The Christmas Accordion. Len competed for and won the right to represent his beloved home at Vancouver's Expo 86, singing The Old Polina and playing guitar, tin whistles and bodhran in front of a TV and Canadian Pavalion audience of some four million people.

Len Penton is a founding member and past president of this province's Music Industry Association, as well as a founding member/past pres of the St. John's Folk Music Club, volunteering at many of the very first local folk festivals, including the NL Folk Festival in Bannerman Park where he spent four years on the folk arts council executive. Len Penton also hosted and produced a KIXX-FM Radio show "The Schooner Baccalieu" for seven years and a Cable Atlantic TV show called "Musical Notes." Len Penton is probably best known these days for playing music with his wife harpist Deborah Clarke. He also toured and played music for years with the late Dorman Ralph and for the last 10 years with Art Stoyles. (Check Art's CD The World Accordion to Art.) Len has also played lots of Indian music in recent years with yoga master Ester Squires at The Lotus Centre and latin music with Deneen Connolly and Salsa Roca. Len's first solo CD "Instrumental Newfoundland" features several classic Newfoundland traditional tunes, some well known celtic music and some original music with Len playing piano, tin whistles, guitar and bodhran while Rick Hollett played accordion, sax and flute; Deb Clarke played a Celtic Harp and Andrew McCarthy drums.