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Akua Dixon is a New Yorker. She attended School of Performing Arts, studied cello with Benar Heifetz at Manhattan School of Music, and composition with Rudolf Schramm. She performed with Duke Ellington, Ray Charles, Bob Hope, Dizzy Gillespie, Max Roach, Itzak Perlman, Pinchus Zuckerman and Jessye Norman. On Broadway she has performed in La Cage Aux Faux, Liza with a Z, Dream Girls, and The Mystery of Edwin Drood. Akua leads Quartette Indigo and founded Uptown String Quartet. She arranged strings for the 5-Grammy CD, The Miseducation of Lauryn Hill and Aretha Franklin’s Grammy-nominated A Rose Is Still A Rose. She notated and conducted Riverside for Alvin Ailey American Dance Theatre, and conducted a new ballet for Wolf Trap’s Face of America series at Wolf Trap. She was assistant principal cellist in the Ballet Orchestra for Alvin Ailey’s American Dance Theatre and The Dance Theatre of Harlem. Akua performs original works and arrangements of Jazz classics in major concert halls, jazz festivals, colleges, universities, jazz clubs and schools in New York; Tanglewood; Rome; Milan; St. Lucia; Berlin; Utrecht; Pori; Seville; Graz; Puerto Rico; Istanbul; Athens; Paris; Vienne; Cuba; Hawaii and Athens. She received awards from NEA in Composition (1980) and the Rockefeller Foundation (1986). In 1998, she won the African American Classical Music Award. She mentors public school string students with Hip Hop Blues Project. She has been a featured artist on Carnegie Hall Education’s Library concerts and Jazz at Lincoln Center’s music in the schools tours. Website: www.akuadixon.com
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