This preview has been provided by the North Carolina Symphony.

The North Carolina Symphony will pay tribute to two of the most beloved performers of the 20th century with Louis and Ella: All That Jazz, which will feature the music of Louis Armstrong and Ella Fitzgerald performed by trumpeter and vocalist Byron Stripling and vocalist Marva Hicks, with drummer Robert Breithaupt.  The Symphony concerts, which will be led by Associate Conductor David Glover, will take place in Meymandi Concert Hall in downtown Raleigh, Friday, Jan. 16, and Saturday, Jan. 17, at 8 p.m. each night. 

With a contagious smile and captivating charm, trumpet virtuoso and actor Byron Stripling has ignited audiences internationally. As soloist with the Boston Pops Orchestra, Stripling has performed frequently under the baton of Keith Lockhart, as well as being featured soloist on the PBS television special, “Evening at Pops,” with conductors John Williams and Mr. Lockhart. Currently, he serves as artistic director and conductor of the highly acclaimed Columbus Jazz Orchestra.  An accomplished actor and singer, Mr. Stripling was chosen, following a worldwide search, to star in the lead role of the Broadway bound musical, “Satchmo.”

Born in Petersburg, Va., Marva Hicks grew up singing in the church founded by her grandfather. Winning a local teen contest would expose her to the Broadway Stage and led to a career in the performing arts.  She had her first record deal while still a student as Howard University. After graduation she moved to New York and was cast in her first Broadway show, “Lena Horne: The Lady and Her Music.” Ms. Hicks was introduced to Stevie Wonder and subsequently, traveled the world with him as a backing vocalist.  Broadway credits also include “The Lion King,” “Caroline or Change,” and “Motown: The Musical.”  She was the recipient of the Helen Hayes Award for Outstanding Lead Actress in the blues musical “Thunder Knocking on the Door.”

Robert Breithaupt is a veteran of over 40 years in music, as a performer, educator, arts administrator, author, musical contractor, and entrepreneur. He is Professor of Music at Capital University, Past-President of the Percussive Arts Society, and on the board of the Jazz Education Network. Mr. Breithaupt has performed and recorded in diverse solo, small ensemble and orchestral settings and has appeared with a virtual “Who’s Who” of great jazz talents and scores of other noted artists. As drummer/percussionist for trumpet virtuoso Byron Stripling, Broadway star Sandy Duncan and other artists, he has performed with dozens of professional orchestras and ensembles throughout the United States and abroad, and is the drummer for the Columbus Jazz Orchestra.

Tickets to the North Carolina Symphony’s performance of Louis and Ella range from $30 to $75.  Student tickets are $15. For more information, go to the North Carolina Symphony’s website at, or call 919.733.2750 or toll free 877.627.6724.

Meymandi Concert Hall is located in the Duke Energy Center for the Performing Arts, 2 E. South St., in Raleigh.

2014-15 Pops Series partners are CEI: The Digital Office and Synergy Spa.

About the North Carolina Symphony

Founded in 1932, the North Carolina Symphony gives more than 200 performances annually to adults and school children in more than 50 North Carolina counties. An entity of the North Carolina Department of Cultural Resources, the orchestra employs 66 professional musicians, under the artistic leadership of Music Director and Conductor Grant Llewellyn, Resident Conductor William Henry Curry, and Associate Conductor David Glover.

Based in downtown Raleigh’s spectacular Meymandi Concert Hall at the Duke Energy Center for the Performing Arts and an outdoor summer venue at Booth Amphitheatre in Cary, N.C., the Symphony performs about 60 concerts annually in the Raleigh, Durham, Chapel Hill and Cary metropolitan area. It holds regular concert series in Fayetteville, New Bern, Southern Pines and Wilmington — as well as individual concerts in many other North Carolina communities throughout the year — and conducts one of the most extensive education programs of any U.S. orchestra.