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Deborah Cox to pay 'Respect' to Aretha Franklin at the Kravis Center in West Palm Beach

The music of Aretha Franklin by Broadway Legend Deborah Cox at the Kravis Center on Dec. 22 at 8 p.m.
Posted at 9:51 AM, Dec 18, 2021
and last updated 2021-12-18 10:12:33-05

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. — Broadway star Deborah Cox will be performing 'Respect: The Music of Aretha Franlkin' on Wednesday, Dec. 22 at 8 p.m. at the Kravis Center in West Palm Beach.

WPTV's Interview with Deborah Cox

T.A. Walker
"Aretha Franklin, what pressure is that to sing her hits?"

Deborah Cox
"I love Aretha Franklin. I grew up listening to all of her music, and she's just a woman, a voice for all genres and that's what I love about her and her music. And I'm really, really thrilled about doing the show on Wednesday."

T.A. Walker
"And what was the prep like?"

Deborah Cox
"I mean, for me, the prep was just a lifetime of listening to her work and being inspired by her work, you know, growing up hearing her hits Natural Woman and Respect and Ain't No Way and all of the other incredible amount of music and legacy of music that [she] left us. You know, that was a homework within itself listening to all those songs. I had a relationship with her as well. She was really a real big supporter of a lot of the things that I've done on Broadway and my music [and] I was asked a couple of times to perform at her birthday parties.

T.A. Walker
"That's pressure, oh my God!"

Deborah Cox
"I know! She loved the tribute album that I did to Diana Washington [on the] Destination Moon album and she loved when I did Aida on Broadway and Jacqueline Hyde and the Bodyguard of course [and] the last performance in Detroit we had we had planned on connecting again, but sadly we never got that chance. So this is going to be a really like a real homage/a attribute to her and [her] legacy and her music and her spirit."

T.A. Walker
Well when you're there on the 22nd at the Kravis Center and you know the acoustics in there are just amazing—I have goosebumps just thinking about it—how does that feel being on that stage representing her paying homage as you say to her, how will that feel?"

Deborah Cox
"It's gonna be a real moving moment, you know, I know I'm going to be fighting back tears [during] some of the songs. [It's] going to be it'll be the first time performing the Kravits in over two years. And [it's] like a real homecoming. That's a beautiful, beautiful venue and to really sing and perform all of this music that has inspired me growing up that has moved me that has just given me a real lift in energy when I need it. It's gonna be it's gonna be awesome. Really, really awesome."

T.A. Walker
"This is kind of dorky but I first ran into Aretha Franklin, you know on TV, watching her on Murphy Brown, and how Murphy Brown (Candice Bergen) was a fan and then finally Aretha came on the show and play Natural Woman and Murphy tried to sing along and Aretha's like, 'I got this. Thank you so much.' What was Aretha a diva in real life or is that just something that kind of goes along with a woman that's accomplished that much?"

Deborah Cox
"She was a grounded diva. She was gravitas in talent. She was incredibly gifted on the piano and with her voice, she knew her instrument. So she deserves all the respect and all of the accolades that she has gotten and still will receive long after. She has inspired hundreds of 1000s of musicians and singers and artists. Over the years you know her style of singing, that sort of, you know, the inspiration from the church. I mean, she just put her soul into everything that she sang. And you never heard her sing a song the same way twice. You know, she just had this way of putting her mark and her staff and her you know, just her integrity and her just her spirit and soul into a song that made it its own. You know, there's no one no one's voice that can compare to the incredible the incomparable Aretha Franklin and that's what we're going to do is just really just pay homage to that [and] honor her in a real true way."