Tickets range from $34 to $13, depending on seating preference. A dinner catered by Bon Appetit will also be offered before the concert for $15 per person. Contact the Belcher Center Box Office at 903-233-3080 or visit between 10 a.m. and 5 p.m. weekdays. Tickets can also be purchased online at www.BelcherCenter.com.
Payne’s tribute will contain famous Fitzgerald songs, including “A-Tisket, A-Tasket,” “Sweet Georgia Brown,” and “It Don’t Mean a Thing.” Payne enjoyed listening to Ella Fitzgerald when she was young, and her own music career began with winning a talent show when she was 13. After singing on radio and TV shows, Payne was given her first professional job at the age of 17. Through Payne’s career, she worked and performed with big music names such as Bill Cosby, Quincy Jones, Sammy Davis Jr., and others.
In 1970, her song “Band of Gold” reached No. 3 in the United States and #1 in the United Kingdom, giving Payne her first gold record. Payne went on to pursue acting in movies and Broadway, although she never left music. Releasing several albums and songs in the 1990s, she also appeared in several movies, including Nutty Professor II: The Klumps. She appeared on American Idol in April 2009, singing her hit “Band of Gold.”
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