Champian Fulton

Growing up in Oklahoma, Champian Fulton was immersed in music. Her father had deep roots in jazz, both as a performer and an educator, and was a close friend of Clark Terry’s. At 10 years old, Champian performed her first paying gig: Terry’s 75th birthday. Terry soon became a mentor to Champian, teaching her the subtleties of performing, as well as the business of jazz. Graduating from SUNY Purchase Music Conservatory, she considered herself more a pianist, and her singing as just a fun side activity. Fortunately for all of us, she soon committed herself to both talents. As she has gained the freedom that success brings, Fulton is adding education to that list of talents, teaching at Litchfield Jazz Camp and Rutgers Jazz Institute, fitting all of this in while performing in Canada, Europe and Asia as well as at some of our favorite Big Apple hotspots like Birdland, Smalls and Mezzrow. Recognized as a “Rising Jazz Star” by Downbeat Magazine, we are thrilled to welcome Champian to the NC Jazz Festival stage on our 40th birthday.