Mieka Pauley

Mieka Pauley (above) will perform with opening act Laura Fleming (below), a senior at Illinois Wesleyan.

Laura Fleming
Singer-Songwriter Mieka Pauley to Perform With IWU Senior as Opening Act

December 5, 2006

BLOOMINGTON, Ill. - Laura Fleming, a senior music major from Palos Park, Ill., will open for singer-songwriter Mieka Pauley on Friday, Dec. 8, at 8 p.m. in the Hansen Student Center, 300 Beecher St., in Bloomington.

The event, which is sponsored by the Office of Student Activities, is free and open to the public.

Fleming also opened for piano-rocker John McLaughlin earlier this year at IWU.  She will start the night with some of her original music, a soulful mixture of jazz and folk.  Credited to Fleming's name are performances in numerous recitals, concerts and shows, including IWU's annual open-mic concert "Slicing Watermelons," which celebrates women in music.  She took over as coordinator of the event her sophomore year and is constantly searching for new voices and music.

Fleming recorded a demo CD at ARS Studios in Alsip, Ill., during the summer of 2005 and was offered a production deal with the studio engineer, with whom she is currently working on a full-length studio album of her original music.

The headline act, Mieka Pauley, who has been compared by critics to Sarah McLachlan and Aretha Franklin, blends blues, classic soul, R&B, rock, gospel and folk into her own personal brand of pop music.  From the clubs of Cambridge and the streets of Harvard Square, Pauley has shared the stage with artists such as Eric Clapton, Wyclef Jean, Jason Mraz, John Legend, Black Eyed Peas, Edwin McCain and Blues Traveler.

Pauley, who was born in Boston and raised in Kentucky, Colorado and south Florida, began singing as a young child, spending her early years studying classical voice and piano.  In high school, she sang in church, as well as in ensembles ranging from alternative garage bands to jazz choirs. She taught herself to play guitar when her uncle gave her his old acoustic guitar.

After high school, Pauley moved to Cambridge, Mass. to attend college.  She graduated in 2002 from Harvard University with a bachelor's degree in biological anthropology.  After college, she performed at numerous festivals, such as the prestigious Rocky Mountain Folks Fest Songwriter Showcase, and won a number of awards for her music, including the first ever Starbuck's Emerging Artist Award.

The Boston Globe said in a recent feature story, "While the eyes may be the window to the soul, Mieka Pauley lets you in through her voice (as unstoppable as a flood) and through her lyrics (as personal as diary entries)."

For additional information about the show, contact Kevin Clark, assistant dean of students, at the Office of Student Activities, (309) 556-3850, or visit the Student Activities' Web site at https://www.iwu.edu/activities.  For additional information about Mieka Pauley, visit www.mieka.com, and to contact Fleming about participating in next semester's "Slicing Watermelons," e-mail her at lfleming@iwu.edu.

Contact: Meg Dubuque, (309) 556-3181