KANSAS CITY, Mo. -- Sunday, May 28th, The Kansas City Symphony’s 15th annual patriotic concert event gets underway at 8 pm, with the grounds open at 3 p.m. Celebration at the Station is the largest free Memorial Day weekend festival in the Midwest, and this year welcomes singer Patti Austin as the special musical guest and host. (Watch her on the FOX 4 Morning Show in the video player above.)
Michael Stern, conductor
Patti Austin, special musical guest and host
Jim Birdsall, special guest
In addition to the concert, there will be a fireworks display, recognition of the 100th anniversary of the United States’ entry into World War I, and a celebration of the 100th birthday of Ella Fitzgerald with her World War II-era songs that inspired and entertained a nation.
Beginning at 3 p.m, bring your lawn chair for pre-concert musical acts, food trucks, Lee Jeans Family Zone, the Grantham University Veterans Place with services for veterans.
Read below about Patti Austin:
Patti Austin’s keen interest in being a total entertainer likely started at the age of 4, when she stepped onto the stage of the Apollo Theater in Harlem at the urging of music legend Dinah Washington. The daughter of jazz trombonist Gordon Austin, Patti was a bona fide recording artist in her teens, achieving her first chart success in 1969 with “The Family Tree” (a Top 50 R&B single) after a string of 45s that would later become treasured collectors’ items among Britain’s northern soul music community.
During the ʼ70s, Austin was the undisputed queen of the New York session scene. Her voice was heard behind everyone from Paul Simon, Cat Stevens, James Brown and Joe Cocker to Bette Midler, Roberta Flack, Luther Vandross and Diana Ross, and on countless memorable commercial jingles. After a series of much-acclaimed albums for CTI Records, she signed with her godfather Quincy Jones’ Qwest label. She began achieving mainstream success on an international level thanks to the Grammy® Award-nominated hit, “Baby Come To Me,” her now-classic duet with James Ingram and the follow-up, Oscar-nominated duet, “How Do You Keep the Music Playing?”. Further appearances with Jones included “Stuff Like That,” his Grammy® Award-winning classic “The Dude,” and “From Q With Love Vols. 1 & 2.”
Austin’s Grammy®-nominated “For Ella” album opened up new doors for her as a performer. Her embrace by the jazz world was cemented further with her Grammy® Award-winning classic “Avant Gershwin.” Her most recent critically acclaimed pop/R&B release, “Sound Advice,” will soon yield a sequel and further demonstrate her artistic versatility.
In 2017, Austin continues her philanthropic work with the Over My Shoulder Foundation and keeps up a constant touring schedule. For more information, visit pattiaustin.com.