Master Classes kick off ‘Legends Of’ concert series with Peabo Bryson, Stephanie Mills

Columbia, SC (WOLO) — It’s an annual event that gives Midlands music lovers a glimpse into the mindset of some of the most legendary musicians during a class. But this is not your typical classroom setting.

During the music classes students are able to speak with musicians, hear more about their individual stories about their careers, and listen to some of their most popular hits live.

This year, the Auntie Karen Foundation is partnering with Richland One Schools, in concert with the Foundation’s ‘Legends Of..‘ concert series. Grammy Award winning musicians Peabo Bryson and Stephanie Mills will be conducting two Masters Classes for Richland One visual and performing arts students, and another class for students with special needs.

Image: Auntie Karen Foundation

South Carolina native, Peabo Bryson has made a name for himself in his own right, and collaborated on hit duets with singers Celine Dion, for their hit ‘Beauty and the Beast’ from the movie bearing the same title. Bryson has also worked along side Regina Belle for their hit song ‘A Whole new World’ featured in the Disney classic ‘Aladdin’ to name a few.

Singer Stephanie Mills, organizers say is often referred to as the ‘ Little girl with a big voice’ because of her small stature, but lungs of steel became a household name during her stint on Broadway in the musical ‘The Wiz’ where her rendition of ‘Home’ left many audiences speechless. Mills went on to record hits including “Never Knew Love Like This Before” and her signature song “Home” from The Wiz.

Image: Auntie Karen Foundation

The first one will take place Thursday, February 20th at Lower Richland High School beginning at 10AM. Organizers say this performance will have students pre-selected from all district middle and high schools, with the exception of W.J. Keenan High School.

Stephanie Mills, along with her son who has special needs, will hit the stage together at 1 p.m. at W.J. Keenan. A huge treat for visual and performing arts students from Keenan and special needs students as well as their parents from Pendergrass Fairwold and other Richland One schools re expected to attend this class.

During her visit, Mills will discuss her career and her experience as the mother of a special needs child. While her son Farad will talk about a book he recently published.

The Master Classes have been going strong for the past 16 years. Previous Master Classes have included musicians like The Isley Brothers, Sheila E., Al Jarreau, Chaka Khan, Jonathan Butler and Gladys Knight.

The event will wrap up Friday, February 21st at 8PM when Peabo Bryson and Stephanie Mills hit the stage together for a paid performance at the Koger Center for the Arts, that is open to the public.

For more information or how you can buy tickets, click on the link provided here.

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