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Laura Hull Jazzes Up Ponte Vecchio

Jazz trio adds elegance to BYOB eatery in New Providence.

Diners at Ponte Vecchio, located inside the in New Providence, were treated to musical entertainment on Saturday, Aug. 20 when the Laura Hull Jazz Trio performed.

Jazz vocalist Hull, of Morris, was accompanied by Vinnie Corrao, whom she called "a world-known jazz guitarist" and Eddie Montiero, on jazz accordion.

Playing jazz standards such as I'm in the Mood for Love, When Sunny Gets Blue, and I Only Have Eyes for You, the group added elegance to the dining experience at the mainly-Italian BYOB restaurant.

Hull, president of the New Jersey Jazz Society, introduced classics such as Days of Wine and Roses by noting that the music was composed by Henry Mancini and the lyrics by Johnny Mercer.

Montiero also serenaded diners in Portugeuse. "Eddie is also a music teacher in the Ironbound section of Newark," Hull explained.

The chanteuse said while she typically plans three sets for the jazz evenings, which take place on the third Saturday of the month, she is happy to take requests.

Because she owns her own talent organization, Songbirds Agency, Hull is able to bring a variety of musicians with her, which allows her to showcase both her own range and the abilities of her colleagues.

"In the two years I've been coming here, I've never booked the same musicians twice," said Hull.

The entertainer said though she is unable to perform at Ponte Vecchio in September due to a prior engagement, diners are in for a treat. Taking her place will be Bill Robinson, a jazz singer in his 80s, who often performs at Hibiscus, the restaurant inside the "sister" Best Western in Morristown. Both hotels are owned by the Boyle family.

"It's funny because the Boyles' father used to book Bill to play for private parties and event," said Hull. "He's wonderful."

Patrons applauded for the trio following each song and made it a point to compliment the singer before leaving. Manager Samir Eldiesyawe said, of Hull, "She is the best performer." Though he also mentioned he is looking forward to Robinson's appearance on Saturday, Sept. 17.

For more information, visit http://www.hotelmurrayhill.com/html/new-providence-dining.asp or www.laurahull.com

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