Prolific jazz vocalist and actress Dee Dee Bridgewater is one of the few artists to successfully transition from acting to music making. In her hometown of Memphis, Bridgewater began singing with a local jazz band and kept developing her vocal style into college, when she began singing with big bands and eventually toured Europe, the US, the USSR and Japan with the Thad Jones-Mel Lewish Band. She starred in the original Broadway production of The Wiz in 1975 as Glinda, a role that would earn her a Tony Award for Best Featured Actress in a Musical. After a lucrative run as an actress in Los Angeles and a second divorce, Bridgewater moved to Paris where she rediscovered her passion for jazz. She has since released several Grammy-winning albums, including her 1997 tribute to legend Ella Fitzgerald, titled Dear Ella. Bridgewater's distinctive, sultry and smooth voice is best captured on her 2011 release Midnight Sun, a collection of songs from various stages of her career that encompass her melodic love stories and band heartbreaking ballads. As an integral part of the jazz world, she connects to jazz lovers around the world with NPR's JazzSet with Dee Dee Bridgewater, a radio show that presents listeners with live jazz performances from small venues, concerts and outdoor festivals.