Ella, First Lady of Song

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Written and Directed by Lee Summers

Conceived by Maurice Hines

“Lee Summers incorporation of the band being used as ensemble members was as brilliant as John Doyle using his Sweeney Todd ensemble as the pit orchestra. I was also moved by Lee’s brilliant timely direction of Ms. Payne’s performance of Hoagy Carmichael and Ned Washington’s “The Nearness of You”. “-  Aug. 28, 2022 

Review: Freda Payne and her ‘Band’ of Gold Marvel in ELLA: FIRST LADY OF SONG at The Madison Theatre At Molloy College

“The song list glides through everything from “A-Tisket, A-Tasket” and “Sweet Georgia Brown” to selections from the “Songbook” albums Fitzgerald recorded celebrating great composers such as Cole Porter, Harold Arlen, and Rodgers and Hart. “ – The Washington Post

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