Event Calendar

RESPECT: A Tribute to Aretha Franklin

Stuart Chafetz, Conductor

She fought for civil rights. 
She fought for women’s rights. 
She won eighteen Grammy Awards.   

She appeared on the Billboard charts 112 times making her the most charted female artist in history. 
She was the first female performer to be inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. 

She was named the greatest singer of all time by “Rolling Stone.” 
She was the Queen of Soul.   

The story of Aretha Franklin is the story of America in the second half of the twentieth century. Her music, her activism, her faith, her strength are woven into the fabric of our history. “Respect: A Tribute to Aretha Franklin” celebrates the singer, the leader, the woman, the legend. 

RESPECT: A Tribute to Aretha Franklin 

Shaleah Adkisson 
Tamika Lawrence 
Blaine Krauss 

Gregory J Watkins and The Worship & Praise Chorale

John Boswell 


Shaleah Adkisson has been seen on Broadway and on tour in "Hair: The American Tribal Love-Rock Musical" and off-Broadway in the revival of the Pulitzer Prize-winning musical "Rent." Her many regional theater credits include "Jubilee" (Arena Stage), "Clybourne Park"," Avenue Q" (Arkansas Repertory Theatre), "The Hot Mikado," "Beehive: The 60's Musical," "Ain'tMisbehavin’" (Broward Stage Door Theatre), "Grease," "Nunsense" (Murry’s Dinner Playhouse) and "Children of Eden" (Arkansas Repertory Theatre). Shaleah regularly performs in New York City and on tour with Soul Picnic Productions ("Back to the Garden" and "August 1969: A Tribute to the Women of Woodstock"). www.shaleahadkisson.com 

Blaine Krauss recently completed a year-long run in "Hamilton" as the standby for both Hamilton and Burr. He was thrilled to be part of the second season of “Pose” while appearing in “The Cher Show”on Broadway. Prior to that he was seen as ‘Lola’ in “Kinky Boots” shortly after making his Broadway debut in the smash hit "Natasha, Pierre and the Great Comet of 1812." He traveled the world as 'Simba' in "The Lion King" and starred in the Radio City Summer Spectacular. Blaine regularly performs with symphonies around the globe and is a regular performer at Feinstein's/54 Below. His talents led him in 2011 to be a feature performer for the largest Commemoration of 9/11 outside of the U.S at the Trocadero in Paris, France. In 2010 he was selected to be 1 of 20 Presidential Scholars in the Arts by the White House and Presidential Scholar Commission. This venture led to having met President Obama and concluded with a performance at the Kennedy Center in Washington D.C. He was selected to be the Feature Vocalist at the 2010 July 4th Celebration at the US National Archives; was a selected participant at the International Fringe Festival in Edinburgh Scotland. His theatrical credits include Godspell and Spelling Bee at the West Virginia Public Theatre, Evita, Into the Woods, Civil War, Make Me A Song, Chess and Jean Valjean in CCM's Les Miserables. Blaine is a proud graduate of the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music.  

Hailing from the Mount Hope neighborhood of the Bronx, two-time Grammy Award-winner Tamika Lawrence began her musical career on Broadway almost 10 years ago and has starred in "The Wiz Live! On NBC," "Book of Mormon,""ComeFromAway,""RENT," "Caroline, or Change" (2022 Drama Desk nomination for Outstanding Featured Actress in a Musical) and the world premiere of "Black No More" (2022 Lucille Lortel nomination for Outstanding Lead Performer in a Musical). She then began to lend her Alt-Rock vocals to movie soundtracks and sang backgrounds for artists including Hugh Jackman, and Idina Menzel. A cross between Jack White and Bette Davis, Tamika began to write her own music and in 2014 released the Album "Ugly" with her the band Tamika & The Slay to critical acclaim. In 2018, Tamika won a Grammy for her work on the Dear Evan Hansen Album and won her second Grammy for her work on "The Greatest Showman." Her critically acclaimed debut solo EP "Two Faced" was released in 2020.