Equally accomplished in both Jazz and classical, pianist/organist Trudy
Pitts is also an excellent composer, arranger, vocalist and teacher. Encouraged by her mother to pursue a career as a concert pianist, Pitts
trained on the undergraduate and graduate levels at the Juilliard School of
Music, Temple University, Connecticut College and the Philadelphia Musical
Academy, where she received a Bachelor’s Degree in Music.
Named "A Living Legend" for her lifetime achievements by International
Women in Jazz in 1996, Ms. Pitts has performed with many of the greatest
names in Jazz, including Ben Webster, Rahsaan Roland Kirk, Lionel Hampton,
Donald Byrd and the incomparable John Coltrane. During the Sixties, Ms.
Pitts was a pioneer of Soul Jazz, and one of the earlier proponents of the
organ as a Jazz instrument. Her recordings, done for Prestige Records
during those years, are classics of the genre.
Touring regularly throughout the world, the Philadelphia native also toured
with the national company of the Tony Award-winning 'Raisin,' to great
acclaim. Her original sacred music suite, 'A Joyful Noise,' was commissioned
by Meet The Composer and received its 1996 premiere at Philadelphia’s
historic Mother Bethel Church to rave reviews.
In 1997, she performed at the Kennedy Center at the Mary Lou Williams Women
in Jazz Festival and was featured in a special Mother’s Day solo piano
concert with Marian McPartland at Temple University’s Rock Hall.
Following five years of teaching music in the Philadelphia public schools,
she has since conducted workshops and master classes in community and
university settings throughout the United States and Canada. Currently,
she is a faculty member at the University of the Arts in Philadelphia and
Philadelphia Community College.