The Music of Ella & Ellington: starring Patti Austin & The Duke Ellington Orchestra
Tickets: $49, $44 & $39
GRAMMY winner, Patti Austin, teams up with The Duke Ellington Orchestra for a spectacular evening of jazz classics which pay homage to Ella Fitzgerald and Duke Ellington.
Patti Austin, the daughter of jazz trombonist Gordon Austin and goddaughter of musical legends Jones and Dinah Washington, creates music that crosses all musical genres. Throughout her 40-year career as a performer, songwriter and vocalist, Austin has been critically acclaimed for her Pop, R&B, Jazz, Soul and Swing renditions; and has been praised for her “voice of elegance, grace and style.” Austin has made 17 solo albums, and has had a star-studded career that began at the age of four, making her one of the most beloved artists across the world and a mainstay on the Billboard Jazz Albums charts.
Austin will be backed by The Duke Ellington Orchestra, conducted by Tommy James. Tommy became a member of The Duke Ellington Orchestra in 1987 after being personally invited by Mercer Ellington (the son of Duke Ellington). When the band’s piano player couldn’t go on tour to Europe, Tommy received the call to join the orchestra.
Mr. James has performed or recorded with numerous artists including Freddie Hubbard, Stanley Turrentine, Roy Ayers, Lionel Hampton and Savior Glover. For The Duke Ellington Orchestra, he recorded "Third Generation," and "Only God Can Make A Tree," with Mercer Ellington. He also served as music director for vocalists Marlena Shaw, Maureen McGovern, and Nell Carter. Mr. James has also performed with Patti LaBelle, Roberta Flack, Manu Dibango, The Stylistics and Teddy Pendergrass.
Recent theater credits include Sammy and Me (2010) with the Alliance Theater (Atlanta GA), Scandalous People (2009) (NY Fringe Festival). He also performed and was the musical director for the world tours of Classical Savion, Bringin' da Noise Bringin' da Funk, and Inprovography.
Currently, he is the pianist for British singer Cleo Lane.