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Count Basie Orchestra, Nnenna Freelon Honor a Musical Legend in CES Jazz Club Performance

Count Basie Orchestra, Nnenna Freelon Honor a Musical Legend in CES Jazz Club Performance
Concert Kicks Off CES Jazz Club Season

The Cultural Events Series Jazz Club sponsored by Kauffman Music gets its season off to a sassy and sizzling start with a concert featuring the world famous Count Basie Orchestra with special guest Nnenna Freelon and at 7:30 p.m., Thursday, Sept. 27, in the Performing Arts Center’s Pealer Recital Hall at Frostburg State University. Join this Grammy-Award-nominated vocalist and premier jazz band for an unforgettable evening of jazz, soul, gospel and blues inspired by the late Billie Holiday, a standout diva in the history of jazz who once sang with the Basie Orchestra.

The legendary Holiday helped the Basie Orchestra give a new sound to the big band legacy. Freelon and the Basie Orchestra will honor and remember her past with the Basie Orchestra by drawing inspiration from Freelon’s “Blueprint of a Lady: Sketches of Billie Holiday,” bringing their unique interpretation to those songs, and adding some of their own music to celebrate this chapter of the Basie-Holiday history.

The Basie Orchestra, directed by Bill Hughes and featuring Butch Miles, consists of 19 musicians dedicated to continuing the legacy of one of the greatest jazz musicians of all time, William “Count” Basie, whose talent with the keyboard elevated jazz to a new art form. The group is in constant demand for television and films, has won every respected jazz poll in the world at least once and continues to accumulate awards and special recognitions.

Freelon’s voice is remarkable for its range and dynamics; her phrasing is precise and straight out of the jazz tradition, but with a slightly modern, even hip-hoppish flavor. Singer, composer, producer and arranger, she has earned the Billie Holiday and the Eubie Blake awards, as well as accolades for her work on behalf of children and education.

Tickets for the show are $29 for the general public; $25 for faculty and staff; $27 for children 17 and under and $15 for FSU students. To purchase tickets or for more information about Freelon and the Basie Orchestra, call the FSU Cultural Events Box Office at (301) 687-3137 or toll free at 1-866-TIXX-CES, or visit online at

The Cultural Events Series is supported in part by a grant from the Maryland State Arts Council, an agency funded by the State of Maryland and the National Endowment for the Arts. The Freelon and Basie Orchestra show is sponsored by Tri-State Hand and Occupational Therapy Inc. and Best Western Braddock. Situated in the mountains of Allegany County, Frostburg State University is one of the 13 institutions of the University System of Maryland. FSU is a comprehensive, residential regional university and serves as an educational and cultural center for Western Maryland.

For more information about FSU, contact the Office of Admissions at (301) 687-4201 or visit the University’s Web site at

FSU is committed to making all of its programs, services, and activities accessible to persons with disabilities. You may request accommodations through the ADA Compliance Office at (301) 687-4102, TDD (301) 687-7955.

For further information on this release, contact:

Office of News and Media Services
Frostburg State University
101 Braddock Road
Frostburg, MD  21532-2303

Telephone: 301-687-3171
Fax: 301-687-7589