Dee Dee Bridgewater: CU Jazz Master

Perfect for jazz lovers, this virtual event will wow you with insight about the impressive vocal chameleon, Dee Dee Bridgewater, an enchanting singer whose voice is playful, irreverent, soulful, and tender. Join us in celebrating Black History Month by honoring, uplifting, and helping tell the stories of Black voices in our communities.

Dee Dee Bridgewater is Champaign-Urbana’s celebrated jazz “daughter.” After launching her career in John Garvey’s U of I jazz band 50 years ago, she has earned international acclaim in concert halls, in jazz clubs, and on theatrical stages, including Krannert Center for the Performing Arts. Now, at age 70, she has never been more vibrant and far-reaching in her artistry. A triple Grammy winner, a Tony winner, and a UN Goodwill Ambassador, Bridgewater was named an NEA Jazz Master – our nation’s most prestigious jazz award. For five decades she has exuded a signature artistry all her own, living out the improvisatory, in-the-moment sensibility of jazz.

Sam Reese, Associate Professor Emeritus of Music at the University of Illinois, will explore the biographical sketch of Bridgewater using excerpts from recent audio interviews and video documentaries. Reese will provide guided listening of Bridgewater, an analysis of the tonal and technical characteristics of her voice, and an explanation of how she creates her scat-singing improvisations.

Brief excerpts from video documentaries will help trace Bridgewater’s trajectory from her childhood in Flint, Michigan, through the college days in Champaign-Urbana, to starring roles on Broadway and in London’s West End, and on to her life in France. We will sample tracks from the 1970s to the present and marvel at her stylistic approach to an amazing range of repertoire. We will also do an in-depth guided listening, look into tonal and technical characteristics of Bridgewater’s voice, and hear her explain how she creates scat-singing improvisations.

$10/person (includes live presentation and recording).
All sales are final.

Registration is required to attend this virtual event. Register using the instructions below:

1. Purchase your ticket(s) here (via Eventbrite).
2. You will receive a confirmation email from Eventbrite with a link to register for the webinar via Zoom located at the very bottom of the e-ticket.
3. Register for the event using the Zoom webinar link.
4. Sign up for a free Zoom account and download Zoom here:
5. Use the link in the webinar confirmation email to attend the event on February 21 at 3:00pm.

(If you attempt to join this webinar without creating an account, you will not be able to access the event.)


Feb 21 2021


3:00 pm - 5:00 pm

Local Time

  • Timezone: America/New_York
  • Date: Feb 21 2021
  • Time: 4:00 pm - 6:00 pm



More Info