More than 1,000 music fans enjoyed a national singing star and a UCF big band on Saturday, November 15 for Jazz On A Green on the College of Medicine’s Tavistock Green. Proceeds from the event – which are still being tallied – will support M.D. scholarships and scholarships for the Lake Nona YMCA.
Sisaundra Lewis, who became a fan favorite with her powerhouse voice during Season 6 of NBC’s The Voice, headlined “Jazz On A Green.” UCF’s Flying Horse Big Band opened the show.
Participants praised the opportunity to enjoy music on a cool fall night in Orlando’s emerging Medical City. The Tavistock Green was covered with patrons, coolers of food, blankets and lawn chairs, with the stage’s backdrop the UCF Health Sciences Campus. Food trucks lined Lake Nona Boulevard.
As she took the stage, Lewis talked about the location and the importance of giving back to the community’s young people. “It is such a beautiful evening,” she said. “I am so delighted to join you here tonight at the College of Medicine, raising funds for scholarships and for our children at the Lake Nona YMCA. You all should give yourselves a round of applause for coming out to support such great causes.”
The outdoor concert was presented by CFE Federal Credit Union. Joseph A. Melbourne, Jr., president of CFE, said the credit union is the key sponsor of the event because “we believe in people helping people. We believe it’s very important to support Jazz On A Green because we want to raise some funds for the community.”
Lewis, one of eight children born in Haines City, grew up singing in the choir at her father’s church. She started her career with Grammy and Oscar Award winner Peabo Bryson, who invited her to tour the world with him as a backing vocalist and his new duet partner. Her acquaintance with Bryson led to a worldwide tour with Grammy and Oscar Award winner Celine Dion. Lewis spent several years working with Dion as her backing vocalist, vocal director and choreographer.
She blew away all four judges on this season’s The Voice and chose Coach Blake Shelton who told her, “You’re One In A Trillion.” Since being voted off The Voice in the quarterfinals, Lewis has been giving motivational talks and performing at promotional and philanthropic events.
At Jazz On A Green, she sang some of the songs she had performed during The Voice and rocked the house with the Whitney Houston hit, “The Greatest Love of All.” The song’s opening lyrics resonated with the crowd and the purpose of the fundraising event: “I believe the children are our future; teach them well and let them lead the way.”
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