Mississippi Opera rings in the New Year as the “Cabaret @ Duling Hall” series continues with “Unforgettable”, a celebration of the centennial of Nat King Cole, on Monday, January 21.

Memorable hits such as “Nature Boy,” “Route 66,” L.O.V.E.,” “Ramblin Rose,” and more will be performed by vocalists David Walker and Latisha Hamilton, with pianist Tyler Kemp in this moving tribute to the 100th anniversary of one of America’s musical icons.

Born in Montgomery, Alabama in 1919, Nathaniel Adams Coles, known professionally as Nat King Cole, was one of the top American jazz singers who recorded over one hundred songs that became hits. In the early 1950s, he began to conquer the charts with ballads like “Mona Lisa,” “Love,” “Smile,” and “When I Fall in Love.”

In 1990, he posthumously received a Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award, and in 1991, his daughter, Natalie, recorded a new vocal track of the 1951 hit “Unforgettable” as a duet with her father, winning seven Grammy awards!

David Walker of New Orleans, Louisiana, has performed with Mississippi Opera in the productions of The Mikado, The Pirates of Penzance, Rigoletto, Faust, and Turandot. He also has been seen in musical theatre roles such as Nicely-Nicely Johnson (Guys and Dolls), Daddy Warbucks (Annie), Gaston (Beauty and the Beast), and Monsieur Reyer (The Phantom of the Opera) at USM. In addition, he was also a featured solo performer in the We are Mississippi Bicentennial Concert during FestivalSouth in 2017, and in From Mississippi to Motown and A Motown Christmas for the Natchez Festival of Music.

Latisha Hamilton is a native of Sylvarena, Mississippi, and has always been passionate about music, having begun learning guitar at age six. Hamilton enjoys being a southern gospel quartet singer and guitar accompanist for her family group, The B & H Gospel Singers, a member of “The Hub City Players,” and the lead singer of R&B band “Smooth Edge.”

An accomplished professional pianist and collaborator, Tyler Kemp has become an essential part of musical life in and around Jackson, Mississippi. Kemp joined the faculty of Mississippi College in 2014 as Faculty Accompanist and Instructor of Collaborative Piano.

Come join us for an “Unforgettable” tribute for the new year on January 21, 2019, at Duling Hall on 622 Duling Ave., located in Jackson’s historic Fondren District. Doors open at 6:00 p.m. with cash bar. Performance starts at 7:30 p.m. Tickets are $25 and available at the door, by phone at 601-960-2300 or online at msopera.org.

The Cabaret @ Duling Hall series is sponsored by Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Mississippi. This project is supported in part by funding from the MS Arts Commission, a state agency and in part, from the National Endowment for the Arts, a federal agency.

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