“Smooth sultry vocalist…Get ready to be enchanted.“ -Coleman Hawkins Jazz Society
Eboni Fondren is more than a smooth and sultry songstress. Singing is her pure joy; her outlet and escape from the pressures of the world. It is a way she can proclaim her love for someone without them knowing it. Through music, she tells off that ex-boyfriend, or announces a yearning for companionship without shame or fear. She touches hearts, and brings joy to all who listen.
Originally hailing from Chicago, Fondren now claims Kansas City as her home. The impressionable years of her life were spent singing in her father’s basement recording studio, variety shows at the YMCA, and of course performing for family and friends. As she got older she honed her skills as a dancer and actor participating in school theatre productions, local television commercials and area talent shows. In high-school she became heavily involved in musical theater, student activities and sports which ultimately led to a very successful college career. It is also here where her love affair with jazz music began.
After graduating college she moved to Kansas City and found her way into the local jazz jams at some of hottest clubs in town. She became a local favorite at the infamous Jardine’s and the former Jilly’s on Broadway and it was there that she met the world renowned Everette DeVan. This fateful meeting led to an 8 year music partnership that helped her grow into one of Kansas City’s shining stars.
While performing at Kansas City’s own Blue Room, Fondren was “discovered” by a representative from the Kansas City Repertory Theatre. After a phone call and a few auditions later, she was offered her first professional theatre job. In the spring of 2012 she made her debut in “Little Shop of Horrors.” Her success with theatre has been fast rising in Kansas City. After "Little Shop...", she landed roles in “Hairspray” at the New Dinner Theatre and in Charles Dickens “A Christmas Carol” with the Kansas City Repertory Theatre. Look for her in the spring 2013 production of "Bud, Not Buddy" at The Coterie Theatre.
In November of 2012, Fondren was able to check off something on her "Bucket List" when she was invited to sing with the Salina Symphony. Under the direction of Ken Hakoda, Fondren, along with the full orchestra, performed in a tribute to the armed forces with a medley of classic jazz standards. With selections like "Orange Colored Sky" and "Summertime" she was a crowd pleaser, but it was her rendition of Etta James's "At Last" that brought them to their feet and her to tears. In her own words "It was the most amazing feeling to be surrounded by all that instrumentation and know that it is just for you. Speechless." See snip-its from the concert in the video section.
Recently, Fondren embarked on her latest project with her new group “Eboni and the Ivories” and they are slowly making their way in and around the Kansas City music scene. They debuted their swinging-jazzy-soul-funk style at the new Chesterfield club in late 2012 and now you can catch them at some of the hottest clubs in town including the new Kill Devil Club located in the Kansas City Power & Light District, the Phoenix and of course, the Blue Room.
Look for more projects including a CD release and more theatre from Miss Fondren in 2013. Visit the calendar page to see where you can find her next. Thanks for visiting.
“A savvy manager could mold her into a headliner.” Kirk Silsbee, Los Angeles City Beat