Joan Collaso

Emmy award winner and international vocalist, Joan Collaso was born, raised and is living in Chicago.

Joan’s flowing sensual melodies, colorful improvisations and soulful stylings capture your ear, and her spirit will capture your heart. She blends the textures of jazz, R&B, blues and gospel in a way that gives her a distinct sound.

In 1997, Joan sang in the history-making movie “Soul Food.” Four times, to standing-room-only crowds, she has enlightened audiences at the North Sea Jazz Festival in the Netherlands. Joan’s other festival appearances include the JazzKaar Festival in Estonia (Russia); the Sister Cities Festival in Osaka, Japan; and touring northern Italy for the Central Jazz Torino School of Jazz. Joan has appeared at least 10 times at the Elkhart Jazz Festival and most recently gave her debut performance at the Chicago Jazz Festival, where she was named one of the top five “must-see” performances. In September 2011, Collaso opened for the R&B artist India Arie at the African Festival of the Arts in Chicago. She has been featured on countless radio and TV commercials. Collaso was a featured vocalist on world-renowned pianist Ramsey Lewis's “Urban Renewal” CD. Three times in 2009 she performed on the Oprah Winfrey show as background vocalist for Susan Boyle, Alicia Keys, Jennifer Hudson, Sugarland and Tim McGraw.

While Collaso trail blazes her musical talents and performances all over the world, she also weaves her extraordinary skills in her community. As an advocate for social justice, she has written, produced and performed musical plays that teach history and promote education, courage and love for school-age children and their families.

In 2010 Collaso started a new organization, Timeless Gifts, a mentoring and performance program for youth in the arts (ages 8-18). Joan and some of her most accomplished colleagues are currently mentoring 25 young performers. Her ultimate vision for this organization is the “Timeless Gifts Center for the Arts.”