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By Ralph Derickson

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Tickets may be ordered by calling (859) 257-TICS (8427)..

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Sept. 1, 2000 – (Lexington, Ky.) – Lainie Kazan, who has reached the pinnacle of virtually every area of performance from jazz singing to television, hit the theaters this week in the new Burt Reynolds movie "The Crew."   Kazan's long-time fans will get a chance to see her in person Thursday, Sept. 14, when she performs in a world premiere jazz concert with the Ladies of Note.

The other members of the Ladies of Note are Melba Moore, who began her career in Broadway's groundbreaking rock musical "HAIR," and Nnenna Freelon who was nominated three times for a Grammy Award.  Their Lexington appearance is the first-ever combined performance by these jazz giants as the Ladies of Note.

The Ladies of Note concert begins at 8 p.m. in the Concert Hall of the UK Singletary Center for the Arts.  Concert tickets are $25 for general admission, $10 for UK students, and are available from the UK Student Center Ticket Office at 257-TICS (8427).

Some of the songs to be performed during the Ladies of Note concert include Irving Berlin's "Blue Skies," Duke Ellington's "Don't Mean A Thing," and such Cole Porter tunes as "Anything Goes," "What Is This Thing Called Love," and "My Heart Belongs to Daddy."

Moore also will sing a medley of tunes from "HAIR" including the highly popular "Aquarius."

The Ladies of Note concert is a spotlight event of a weekend in which the University of Kentucky will kick off the most ambitious fund-raising campaign in the history of the Commonwealth of Kentucky. The effort is called “A Call to Greatness.”

Kazan, Moore and Freelon are strong supporters of education in America.  Freelon currently serves on the board of Partners in Education, a grassroots member group that provides a direct link to local school districts and community leaders throughout the country.

  Partners in Education's mission is to connect children and classroom teachers with corporate, education, volunteer, government and civic leaders to enhance the delivery of education services to children and their families.

The three singers will meet Wednesday, Sept. 13, with students from UK College of Education to discuss ways to improve and enhance education in America.   At this 3:30 p.m. session in the Recital Hall of the UK Singletary Center for the Arts, UK President Charles T. Wethington, Jr., will present each singer with an award for their continuing efforts to support education at all levels.

UK music students will meet with the singers from 12:30 to 2 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 14, in the Recital Hall of the Singletary Center.  UK music professor Jefferson Johnson said, "Nothing can compare with hearing the perspective of full-time professional performers who are doing what many of our students hope to do one day."

Kazan stormed series television, receiving an Emmy Award nomination, for her role in the hit television series St. Elsewhere.  More recently, she has been featured on Beverly Hills 90210 and has a recurring role as Aunt Freida on The Nanny.

Nnenna Freelon was nominated three times for the Grammy Award, twice for the "Lady of Soul" Soul Train Awards.  She won the Billie Holiday Award from the Academie du Jazz in France.

Her newest recording, "Maiden Voyage," includes original jazz songs and is a project she describes as a "joyous celebration of feminine spirit and passion…stories both new and familiar."

During 18 months with the musical "HAIR," Melba Moore played a variety of roles and eventually became the first African-American actress to play Broadway's lead female role.  From "HAIR" came the role of Lutiebelle, the innocent southern girl who falls in love with a fast-talking preacher, in the long running musical "Purlie."   For her performance she won Broadway's coveted Tony Award as best supporting actress in a musical.

Moore took over the role of Fantine in the Broadway musical "Les Miserables" in 1990.

Among Moore's many pop/rhythm and blues hits that make up her roster of more than a dozen albums are "This Is It," "You Stepped Into My life" and the Grammy-nominated signature song "Lean On Me."

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