[Courtesy of the Louisiana Philharmonic Orchestra]

LPO Concert Honoring the Chase Family this January

07:00 December 29, 2023
By: Eliana Sarfati-Magill

Jazz Orchestra in Honor of Two NOLA Legends

The Louisiana Philharmonic Orchestra will be honoring two civil rights trailblazers, Edgar "Dooky" Chase Jr. and Leah Chase, on Saturday, January 13.

The show, titled Rhapsody in Blue, will be a jazz performance backed by a full orchestra. The event will take place at the Orpheum Theater and the music will begin at 7:30 p.m. Ticket prices range from $28-$110 with student tickets available for $10.

The Chase family is deeply rooted in the history of New Orleans and the fight for civil rights in the city. Dooky Chase's Restaurant, one of the most iconic Black-owned NOLA restaurants, opened in 1941 and has been an integral part of the community and culture of the city ever since. Many of the nation's leaders have dined at the establishment including Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and Thurgood Marshall.

In addition to supporting the family restaurant, Edgar "Dooky" Chase Jr. became a name in the world of New Orleans music and founded the Dooky Chase Orchestra, which progressively, for its time, featured his sister, Doris Chase, as a lead vocalist. The LPO's concert this January commemorates the 75th year since the orchestra's last show.

Leah Chase had an equally massive impact on New Orleans as her husband. She was a legendary chef and advocated for the preservation of Creole cooking. She was the executive chef of the Dooky Chase family restaurant for over 50 years and fed the city with her passion for food and civil rights. She was also awarded the James Beard Lifetime Achievement Award, inspired the Princess Tiana Character in Princess and the Frog, and guest starred on many cooking shows including Top Chef.

Rhapsody in Blue, by George Gershwin, is a beautiful meld of jazz and classical music and plays homage to the big-band era of the 1940's. The concert also commemorates the 100th anniversary of Gershwin's piece. Chase Kamata, Edgar and Leah's granddaughter, will be featured as a vocalist in the show. The concert will also feature fan favorite classics from Duke Ellington including "Giggling Rapids" and "Satin Doll."

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