It was a rainy night… No… Wait… That’s a different story.
Dan and Peter met at random by being booked for the same Dueling Pianos show in Iowa. Being that Dan was out of Green Bay, and Oshkosh is where Peter resides, they rode together to and from the event.
There were many stories shared – and many laughs and uncomfortable looks. By the time the drove down, did the show and drove back to Wisconsin, they had laid out a plan to bring the shows to the Wisconsin masses! They couldn’t be more different – but it all comes together on the stage.
The result is a rousing experience for anyone attending any of their shows. They finish each others’ sentences (often times inaccurately), torment each other at times, but most importantly deliver a fun, fantastic show that only Dan and Peter can deliver! See for yourselves!
Peter Hernet has been a Dueling Pianos icon for over 20 years. His gift for entertaining people combined with his passion for music have made him a sought after entertainer across the Midwest. Born and raised in Milwaukee, WI, Peter Hernet is a self taught piano player and musician who started tickling the ivories at age 5.
“By the time I was in high school, I was playing full songs with more skill than I would have expected. The first clue to my future in Dueling Pianos was when I would hear a song on the radio and immediately be able to play along.”
When he got his first job playing in a dueling piano bar, he was hooked – and so were his audiences! Peter was immediately a hit, and bar owners were getting calls asking when I would be back.
Since then, Peter has served as Entertainment Director for 2 traditional Dueling Pianos venues and has trained many up and coming duelers in the Midwest. He even owned his own Dueling Piano bar for a short time before realizing that his true love is the music and the audiences. As co-owner of NEW Dueling Pianos, he loves having the opportunity to meet and entertain new audiences every night.
The number one question he gets from audiences – aside from “When will you be back?” – is about his favorite song.
“I really don’t have a favorite song. My favorite song to play is what people request,” Hernet says. “We’re not up there to play songs I want to play, we’re up there to play what the audience wants to play. Giving them what they want and hearing them all laughing and singing along is absolutely my favorite.”
Known as “Green Bay’s Piano Man”, Dan Rafferty has always had performing in his blood… or soul… Anyway… Whether it be school plays, bands, skits, or being forced to play/sing/dance for family friends by his mother – it was clear, all Dan needed was an audience and he’d entertain.
“If it’s not fun, and if you can’t make it fun, it’s probably not worth doing…” has been Dan’s motto throughout his life, and he’s held true to it. He also feels everyone should have a soundtrack to their lives – so much so that, in high school, people would tell stories, and he’d accompany it with Top 40 snippets, TV themes, or just made up stuff to get people wondering what was truly wrong with him.
Before Dan jumped into the Dueling Pianos scene, he had a long standing career in (yawn) Information Technology. Sure he played in different performing groups throughout Northeast Wisconsin as the ‘keyboard guy’ with occasional front-man duties, but it was at one of the IT conferences in one of those ‘Big Cities’ where he saw Dueling Pianos for the first time – it stuck with him as the high energy/fast paced insanity played right into his motto.
He started dueling regularly on weekends for different outfits throughout the Midwest – and then he and Peter formed NEW Dueling Pianos.
Due to the increased demand for our super-fun shows, you may occasionally see a new face. Sometimes need to tap into our “Featured Friends” network of amazing duelers!
This is no need for panic! If anything, be excited! We’re thrilled to feature incredible entertainers who are part of the NEW Dueling Pianos family! They’ll make you smile… They’ll make you laugh… They’re happy to take a turn driving the bus!
Until cloning of Dan and Peter is possible – the demand gets what the demand gets! Our Featured Friends are Fun, Fabulous, Fresh, Festive, Flexible, and F’n Crazy!