Upcoming US Shows: Mon, April 30 Port Jeff., NY 6:30 pm show, doors 6:00pm BUY 4/30 TKTS *48 Avail* Sun, May 20 NYC 7:00 pm show, doors 6:30 pm BUY 5/20 TKTS
Named a "Best Bet" by The New York Times, Kumalo's larger-than-life voice and personality adds new dimension to the music of the "High Priestess of Soul," famed for her unforgettable renditions of classics like "My Baby Just Cares for Me" "Be My Husband" & "Feeling Good." Robbi's joined on stage by Leopoldo F. Fleming, who's played with a cornucopia of great artists including Miriam Makeba since '65 AND Nina Simone for nearly 31 years. This Kumalo / Fleming pairing happened over 30 years ago when they both work for NYC's oldest children's repertory theatre company, The Shadow Box Theatre. This show unites friends on many levels.
Like Simone, Kumalo's musical roots run deep from classical beginnings, thru soul to pop, along with rhythm & blues centered on a grounding in jazz & church music. Like Makeba, she sings in many languages including French, Spanish, Portuguese, Italian English, German, & Zulu. Given her ability to capture the essence of a broad range of musical genres, Kumalo honors many iconic women from the Great African-American Songbook of collected melodies. She skims the surface of these classic sounds associated with Miriam Makeba, Nina Simone, Lena Horne, Mary Lou Williams, Pearl Bailey, Alice Coltrane, Roberta Flack, Brenda Russell & Aretha Franklin among many more; legends that still have the power to bring a tear to the eye & joy to the soul, decades after the fact. Kumalo connects the past to the future using a looper to improvise a inspired soundscape for a playful conversation with Mr. Fleming. Experience the Great African-American Songbook of Robbi Kumalo.
Robbi takes an intimate journey into the mind, music, story & songs of these Ladies of Piano and their Great African-American Songbook. in addition to celebrating herself as a performance artist reconceptualizing her own musical foundation. Kumalo's recordings include Montana Bound, a live jazz recording w/her ensemble and Second Take – a pairing of originals songs & American classics. Her CDs for children include...
Photo by Lynn Spinnato