Project Description

Returning to Elkhart for the 30th time in 2019!

Emmy award winner and international vocalist, Joan Collaso, was born, raised and is living in Chicago.

Joan’s flowing sensual melodies, colorful improvisations and soulful vocal stylings will capture your ear, and her spirit will capture your heart. She blends the textures of Jazz, R&B, Blues, and Gospel in a way that gives her a distinct sound.

In 1997, Joan appeared singing in the history-making movie ‘Soul Food’. Four times, to standing room-only crowds, she has enlightened audiences at the North Sea Jazz Festival in the Netherlands.

Joan has been a staple at the Elkhart Indiana Jazz Festival for over 2 decades. This year she will make her debut at the Gene Harris “Coming Home Coming Together” concert in his hometown, Benton Harbor, Michigan. In 2013 Ms. Collaso gave her debut performance at the Chicago Jazz Festival where she was named one of the top 5 “must-see” performances. Joan is a favorite at the African Festival of the Arts in Chicago, where she opened for R&B artist India Irie in 2011, and R&B/Smooth Jazz icon, Jeffrey Osborne in 2015. In 2016 Ms. Collaso took her one-woman show “A Tribute to Nancy Wilson & Shirley Horn” to Las Vegas. She has been featured on countless radio and TV commercials. She was a featured vocalist on world-renowned pianist, Ramsey Lewis’ “Urban Renewal” CD. Three times in 2009 she performed on the Oprah Winfrey show performing background vocals for Susan Boyle, Alicia Keys, Jennifer Hudson, Sugarland and Tim McGraw.

She’s performed backing vocals live for with George Duke, Kirk and Kevin Whalum, Gerald Albright and Al Jarreau. And in 2014- 2015 had the great honor to sing background vocals for the Midwest portion of Stevie Wonder’s “Songs In The Key Of Life” tour! Most currently Joan has been performing background vocals with the “Queen of Soul”, Ms. Aretha Franklin!

Ms. Collaso is also the founder, Executive and Artistic Director of Timeless Gifts Youth Program for the Performing Arts. Now entering its 7th year, Timeless Gifts conducts a 7-week summer program where students receive instruction from world-class musicians and other performing artists, participate in professionally produced productions, along with many other performance opportunities. The program has thus far been sustained by the generosity of private donors who love our children and believe in providing opportunities for them to learn, be creative and get experiences that they otherwise may not be able to get.