Amy Banks

... spent two decades performing as a professional singer, actress, and television personality. Originally from Minnesota, she has appeared on stage and screen all over the world, but calls Lancaster, Pennsylvania home after relocating there to perform at the American Music Theatre. Since then, she has self-published and produced five music CDs, of which her third CD, When the Sun Comes Out, reached Chartbound status at JazzWeek. Her most recent, Amy Sings Aretha: A Motown Love Story is a cabaret-concert-dance party highlighting classic and current Motown-inspired songs. The album was funded by generous fan donations raised by a Kickstarter campaign, and recorded live to a sold-out house at The Ware Center, Millersville University, in Lancaster. Subsequent performances took place at Building 24 in Reading, PA and was among the first of the local acts in the Long's Park Amphitheater Summer Series.

Amy's performing career began while living in Atlanta, Georgia where she first appeared in productions with the top stage companies including The Alliance Theater, Jomandi Productions and The Horizon Theater. For nearly a decade she performed cabaret-style shows with Robert Ray and through working with him, further honed her singing skills before moving to Orlando, Florida to work for Walt Disney World Company at the brand new Animal Kingdom theme park. She played both female roles in The Festival of the Lion King singing favorites from the Lion King movie including “Can You Feel the Love Tonight” and “Circle of Life”.  While in Florida she began a year-long engagement singing jazz three nights a week with the Ed Connelly Trio at The Grosvenor Resort.  

After a stint performing shows in her hometown(s) with Penumbra Theater and The Illusion Theater in Minneapolis, Amy moved to Lancaster and spent four seasons with American Music Theatre (AMT). While there, Amy nurtured her love for jazz in venues throughout Central PA – from Lancaster restaurants to the Harrisburg Hilton’s prestigious jazz room, The Bar. She's appeared at The Philadelphia Museum of Art; The Berks Jazz Festival; Jazz Night at the James A. Michener Museum, Doylestown, PA; Bucknell University; and the "Jazz Upstairs at the Fulton Theatre" series in Lancaster, as well as various clubs, restaurants, local churches, and countless charitable fundraisers. Later, Amy returned to Disney World to reprise her roles in the Festival of the Lion King before returning to AMT for a fifth season.  Amy has also made a name for herself in Charleston, SC, where she has joined Brad and Jennifer Moranz in five different original productions at the Charleston Music Hall. In television, Amy made her hosting debut as a host-commentator on the reality TV shows "Design Invasion" (FOX) and "Bad Baths USA" (HGTV).

In 2012, Amy made her European club debut, performing at Jazz Club Soyouz Kompozitorov in Moscow, Russia. Later that year she performed in “Mistletoe Magic” with the Harrisburg Symphony Orchestra, under the direction of Maestro Stuart Malina.

Amy has appeared regularly in the performing arts series at Millersville University, including a guest appearance with the student jazz bands, and starred in "Happy 100th Birthday, Ella!" (2017), "How Glad I Am: A Tribute to Nancy Wilson" (2019) and "Swinging Through the Holidays with the Harrisburg Jazz Collective Big Band" (2022). 

She was integral in establishing several standing jazz engagements throughout Lancaster, including "Lovely Ladies of Jazz" at The Greenfield Restaurant, Music Fridays at the Lancaster Marriott, and jazz weekends at Gibraltar Restaurant. She appeared regularly on the casino circuit in Atlantic City, NJ, at Harrah's Casino, Philadelphia.

In 2016, Amy's musical imprint took another turn when she and her business partner Katie Robinette introduced Central City Orchestra (CCO) through their company Robin-Banks Entertainment. From its inception, CCO has been Central PA's go-to for non-stop, high energy corporate parties and wedding receptions. The 10 piece band has earned multiple awards, including Best of the Knot/Wedding Wire and Susquehanna Style Magazine; and was twice voted as Best Variety Band by the Central Pennsylvania Music Hall of Fame. While CCO stays busy up and down the Mid-Atlantic coast, Amy still manages to fit in jazz concerts (with her trio/quartet,) and big band concerts across the region.

Amy’s other passion is contributing to the community. In conjunction with the Ware Center, Amy produced Aware Lancaster Yoga & Wellness Day (2016 & 2017,) and served on the Board of Directors for the Lancaster Creative Factory, The Lancaster Mayor's Office of Special Events and was a founding organizer of the Divas of Jazz, whose annual concert events raised over 70K to benefit The PA Breast Cancer Coalition. Most recently, she served three years on the Gretna Music Music Committee and was just added again to the Board of the Central PA Friends of Jazz.

Amy recently joined the staff at Penn State Harrisburg as Performing Arts Operations Specialist, Kulkarni Theatre. Prior to that, she served for seven years at Millersville University as Arts Communication Manager for the Office of Visual and Performing Arts. Amy co-owns Robin-Banks Entertainment, LLC, where she co-leads the  "best party band in the world," Central City Orchestra, with business partner Katie Robinette. A lifelong learner, in her spare time, Amy works out at TREAD HOUSE (Woo Hoo!!) travels the world seeking adventure and coffee, and enjoys concerts, arts events and most recently, museums.