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South Suburban College hosts the “Afro Blues Ensemble”

Concert celebrates 100th birthday of Dizzy Gillespie and Ella Fitzgerald

information provided by South Suburban College

SOUTH HOLLAND, Ill. (February 11, 2018) – This year’s Black History Gala will feature the Afro Blues Ensemble’s 100th Birthday celebration of Dizzy Gillespie and Ella Fitzgerald on Wednesday, February 21, in the Performing Arts Center (PAC). The one-hour concert will begin at 7:00pm and will be followed by a “Soul Food” buffet from 8:00-9:00pm. This unique ensemble, led by Art “Turk” Burton, Master Percussionist, will feature other world-class musicians, highlighting their musical genius.


John “Dizzy Gillespie” Birks is considered one of the greatest trumpeters of all time. He was a trumpet virtuoso and improviser. His beret and horn-rimmed glasses, his scat singing, his bent horn, pouched cheeks, and light-hearted personality were essential in popularizing Afro-Cuban Jazz, Latin Jazz, and bebop. Always a musical ambassador, he toured Africa, the Middle East, and Latin America under the sponsorship of the U.S. State Department. Gillespie left a legacy of goodwill and good humor that infused jazz musicians and fans throughout the world with a genuine sense of jazz’s ability to transcend national and ethnic boundaries. For this reason, Gillespie was and is an “international treasure.”


Dubbed the “First Lady of Song,” Ella Fitzgerald was the most popular female jazz singer in the United States for more than 50 years. In her lifetime, she won 13 Grammy Awards and sold over 40 million albums. Her voice was flexible, wide-ranging, accurate, and ageless. She sang sultry ballads and sweet jazz, and could imitate every instrument in an orchestra. Fitzgerald worked with jazz greats Duke Ellington, Benny Goodman, Count Basie, Nat King Cole, Frank Sinatra, and Dizzy Gillespie. She performed at top venues all over the world to diverse audiences.

Afro Blues

The February 21 performance will feature Art “Turk” Burton on percussion; Leon “Q” Adams on trumpet; Edwin Daughtery on saxophone; Edward Beard, piano; Dushon Mosley, drums; and Maggie Brown, vocals.

More information is available by calling South Suburban College’s Office of Student Life & Leadership at 708-596-2000, x2499.

South Suburban College is located at 15800 S. State Street in South Holland, Illinois.


South Suburban College
South Suburban College
South Suburban College offers a wide selection of career education and college transfer credit programs. Based in South Holland, Illinois, with a satellite campus in Oak Forest, SSC offers non-credit customized training, short-term instruction for business, and dozens of special interest classes.