“The reality is that there aren’t that many women that are seen playing jazz, but they do exist,” says Camille Thurman, a 29-year-old saxophonist, flutist, vocalist, composer, and educator who has performed at the Kennedy Center.
“In a lot of ways, women have always been the trendsetters,” says 27-year-old Christie Dashiell, a vocalist who has been featured on NBC’s The Sing-Off and who will be honoring Ella Fitzgerald during her set. “I love being a woman in jazz, and I love carrying the torch of the great legendary women of the music.”
Thurman, who grew up in the same neighborhood of Queens where Fitzgerald once lived, was also inspired by strong women in jazz such as Sarah Vaughan. “I want to be just as strong and confident and powerful,” she says.