Barbara’s stage career began at age 15 and has run the gamut from theatre to touring puppeteer in venues ranging from universities to the storied stages of Las Vegas. After studying music, theater and dance at Indiana University, jazz and blues fueled her musical passion and became her calling card. Her career has been spent captivating audiences with inspired interpretations of jazz standards, show tunes, and popular songs across genres.
“I have been fortunate to have such an incredible breadth of experiences throughout my career, but nothing brings me more joy than each time I can share [my] music with an audience.” – Barbara Santora
A few highlights of her life on stage include:
- Sharing the spotlight with talents such as Frank Sinatra Jr. and Billy Preston
- Perfecting her exceptional five-octave range, allowing her to draw audiences into her performances
- Spending 14 years on stages in Las Vegas captivating audiences
- Being tapped to open for Liberace
- Traveling the globe with the USO as a featured entertainer, lifting the spirits of service men and women
- Leading successful ensemble and duo groups
Barbara’s dedication and determination have been demonstrated throughout her career, perhaps never more so than her tireless work to recover from a crushed ankle to get back on the stage. She now performs with her duo, Side by Side, with pianist, singer and composer John Michael O’Leary. Their shows bring jazz and timeless classics with a flair for love & laughter to audiences of all ages.
These two photos are from a CD Barbara created when Desert Storm broke out. ALL proceeds went to the family’s of those who had loved ones taken to battle.
“A beautiful story connected with this is we were a year later playing in Seoul, Korea and I announced I was going to sing a song that I’d recorded. Out of the audience 5 young men jumped up out of their seats and yelled “America Awake From Your Sleep”! I was stunned as they all approached the stage and sang word for word my song! With tears streaming from all our eyes they told me this is what they sang with their little cassette player as they marched into Kuwait!” – Barbara Santora