Bessie, Billie & Nina –
Celebrating Women in Jazz
Bessie Smith, Billie Holiday, and Nina Simone were among the most influential and popular singers of their times, wielding their exceptional talents to combat racial prejudice, sexism, and poverty. Whether powerfully and playfully claiming their autonomy and sexuality, forcing America to acknowledge racism, or giving voice to the civil rights movement with stirring protest anthems, they spoke to and for the disenfranchised as women, African-Americans, and artists. All three defied social norms to embrace self-empowerment through their art.
Each a rising star in her own right, Charenée Wade and Camille Thurman perform with Jazz at Lincoln Center and Tahira Clayton co-leads the Women in Jazz Organization. Backed by an all-female band, they celebrate the enduring legacies of these iconic women and artists with performances of their classic songs.