March 15, 2017
Jazz performers Alicia Olatuja and Joey DeFrancesco are scheduled to appear at the University of Wyoming as part of the UW Cultural Programs spring schedule. Olatuja will perform Thursday, March 23, and DeFrancesco Friday, March 24, both at 7:30 p.m. in the Buchanan Center for the Performing Arts concert hall.
Tickets for both performances cost $17 for the public; $14 for senior citizens, UW faculty and staff; and $10 for students. Tickets are available at the Performing Arts box office and the Wyoming Union information desk, by calling (307) 766-6666 or going online at www.uwyo.edu/finearts.
Originally from St. Louis, Mo., Olatuja grew up immersed in the sounds of gospel, soul, jazz and classical music. She later graduated from the Manhattan School of Music with a master’s degree in classical voice/opera.
Olatuja’s spotlight moment occurred in 2013 when she performed as a featured soloist with the Brooklyn Tabernacle Choir at former President Barack Obama’s second inauguration. Later, she assembled her own jazz band and recorded her first album, “Timeless.”
She has performed with such stars as Chaka Khan, BeBe Winans and Christian McBride.
In 2014, Olatuja caught the attention of composer Billy Childs and became part of his current nationwide “Map to the Treasure: Reimagining Laura Nyro” tour. Olatuja’s performance at UW falls in between her tour performances in San Francisco, Calif., and Washington, D.C.
For more information about Olatuja, visit http://www.unlimitedmyles.com/alicia-olatuja-main#.
Philadelphia, Pa., native DeFrancesco was raised playing the organ. DeFrancesco’s father began teaching him how to play when he was 4 years old, memorizing jazz albums from his home. DeFrancesco’s father brought him to performances where he was introduced to legendary musicians such as Hank Mobley and Philly Joe Jones.
DeFrancesco, a natural musician, also learned to play the trumpet. He toured with the legendary Miles Davis as …