KC Jazz Orchestra next concert “The Future” will be Fri. Feb. 24 at 8 p.m. at the Helzberg Hall of the Kauffman Center for the Performing Arts, located at 1601 Broadway.

The concert will feature both current and “future” stars of Jazz in Kansas City.  Featured guest artists will be local vocalists Lee Langston and Eboni Fondren.  The future stars will include performances by a student combo from Kansas City Kansas Community College, who will open for the Jazz Orchestra in place of a pre-concert Jazz Chat, and a side-by-side performance with the orchestra by a student string section from Soundwave Academy.

Langston and Fondren will take the lead and will be putting their fresh twist on great tunes from iconic artists Stevie Wonder, Natalie Cole, Sam Cook  and Roberta Flack.

Langston is a rising artist with a unique way of taking each song and making it his own.  A talented artist, he is equally comfortable singing soul, jazz, classical genres, rock, pop and more. His musical career has elevated tremendously including performances on many stages and with many of Kansas City’s elite musicians.  He has shared the stage with acclaimed acts such as Cameo, Michael McDonald, Krystle Warren, and many others. 

Fondren’s  jazz career took flight when working under the wing of Everette DeVan, internationally acclaimed Hammond B-3 organ player and band leader. She eventually took the role as a bandleader of her own group, Jukeboxx Media and is also lead singer in the popular party band Lost Wax. In addition to previously being a featured artist with the Kansas City Jazz Orchestra, The Lyric Opera of Kansas City and the Salina Symphony,  

In 2020, she was named one of the Women Shaping Kansas City by Visit KC Magazine and was recently nominated as best jazz artist by The Pitch and Kansas City Jazz Ambassadors.

The Kansas City Jazz Orchestra is one of the nation’s preeminent big bands, performing classic and original repertoire in a variety of settings. With the beautiful Kauffman Center for The Performing Arts as a home base, KCJO’s concert season runs from the fall through winter each year.  In addition to the season, the orchestra plays a variety of concerts, dances, and festivals, engaging audiences locally, across the country and internationally.  

“Future” is the next-to-the-last concert in the 2022-23 and 20th Anniversary season of the Kansas City Jazz Orchestra.  The KCKCC student combo performance will begin at 7 p.m.  The main orchestra performance begins at 8 p.m.  For r more information about the KC Jazz Orchestra and its season, go to kcjo.org  For tickets to the concert go to: https://bit.ly/405cYzP