AN AWARD WINNING ONE-WOMAN SHOW BASED ON TRUE EVENTS
The Life & Secrets of Ina Ray Hutton
Ina Ray Hutton was the most successful female bandleader of the Big Band era. She conducted The Melodears, an all-girl band, and was the first woman to conduct male bands in the 1940’s. Ina was the first woman to have her own TV show in the 1950’s.
Ina hailed from the south-side of Chicago. At the age of 8, a vaudeville producer recognized her tap dancing abilities and arranged for her to move to NYC to perform in his children’s show. This event led to a remarkable 30 year career in entertainment. However, her success in the spotlight was threatened by a secret she couldn’t afford to reveal at that time.
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Melissa is the recipient of a grant from the Puffin Foundation for 2015.