Leslie Beukelman is a young professional singer who originally hails from a small town outside of Chicago called Sandwich, Illinois. In 2005, she graduated with honors from Roosevelt University’s Chicago College of the Performing Arts with a Bachelor’s degree in jazz vocal performance. She has studied with Jackie Allen, Karrin Allyson and Patricia Barber among others. Since graduating, Leslie has gradually forged a central role in Chicago’s unique and vibrant music scene. She is a first-call musician in Chicago because of a rare gift for versatility, as well as a disciplined commitment to ongoing musical growth. Leslie prides herself on a willingness to create fresh, new music even while she honors and studies the music of the past. On any given night in Chicago, she could be leading her modern jazz quartet at the Jazz Showcase, performing with a swing-era big-band at Fitzgerald’s, belting out soul and R&B hits at the Drake Hotel, or pushing the experimental music envelope with her band Information Superhighway at Schubas. Regardless of the music or the setting, one of Leslie’s truly remarkable gifts is her ability to connect with any audience while drawing listeners in with her charisma, professionalism and extraordinary vocal command. She is favored by many of Chicago’s top jazz musicians for her ability to improvise at a high level, much like any instrumentalist. At only 28 years old, Leslie is a 4-time winner of the Union League Civic and Arts Foundation Jazz Improvisation Competition. In addition, she has been formally recognized at the IAJE regional conference in 2005, and has drawn praise from several of Chicago’s top media outlets, including the Chicago Tribune, the Chicago Reader, and Timeout magazine.
This woman has such a natural way about her singing. Her pitch, her range, her sound, her interpretation is extraordinary.
-Maria Schneider, Grammy Award-Winning Artist
“Exquisite vocalist Leslie Beukelman… has mastered genres as vast as soul, melodic jazz, scat, rock and atonal experimentation.”
-Lucia Mauro, Chicago Tribune
“This concert is made all the more enjoyable by the quartet
of live musicians, especially songstress Leslie Beukelman,
mastering everything from pop to scat.”
-Sid Smith, Chicago Tribune
Willing to teach
Intermediate to advanced