Ann Hampton Callaway 'The Ella Century'

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Last Show: Thursday 26 th October 2017

The Pheasantry (Chelsea)

Ann Hampton Callaway’s show 'The Ella Century' has been a hit in theaters and with symphonies so now enjoy her up close in her one woman performance at The Pheasantry October 24-26. Back by popular demand, Callaway shares an exciting evening in Ella Fitzgerald’s centennial year full of timeless classics and thoughtful stories. Callaway explores the breadth of Ella Fitzgerald’s repertoire in a show which includes fresh takes on classics such as, 'How High the Moon', 'Mr. Paganini', and 'Every Time We Say Goodbye.'

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"Ann Hampton Callaway…superbly intelligent, singularly creative pop-jazz stylist who can stand shoulder to shoulder with Streisand, Ronstadt, Shirley Horn, and Dianne Reeves...”


Few contemporary singer-entertainers are as well equipped to address the amazing legacy of Ella Fitzgerald as Ann Hampton Callaway, who combines a lovely honey-tinged contralto with the improvisatory skills of a master jazz musician. (Her centennial salute to the First Lady of song is additionally empowered by the piano work of Matt Baker, himself an acolyte of Oscar Peterson, who, among many other things, was Fitzgerald’s most famous keyboard collaborator.) In song and anecdote, she guides us through the broad outlines of one of the most remarkable careers in music, from Fitzgerald’s dysfunctional childhood to her big band breakthrough and, ultimately, her glory years as one of the definitive singers of what she helped establish as the Great American Songbook. Because Fitzgerald was also an outstanding duet partner, Miss Callaway takes the opportunity to cross cadenzas with her sidemen, singing “Moonlight in Vermont” (in honor of Fitzgerald’s TV appearances with Frank Sinatra) with Mr. Baker and “A Fine Romance” (a la her classic albums with Louis Armstrong) with trumpeter Benny Benack. From the opening “Oh, Lady Be Good” to the encore of “Mack the Knife” (recalling Fitzgerald’s masterpiece concert album from Berlin, 1960) this is as fine an Ella-Bration as we are likely to get in this centennial year.

By Will Friedwald