Bertha Hope

A headshot of Bertha Hope, smiling.

A dynamic force in improvised music, pianist Bertha Hope has been making headway in the jazz scene since the early 1960s. Raised in Los Angeles, Bertha began her jazz journey with pianists Elmo Hope and Richie Powell. In 1961 both Elmo and Bertha recorded together for the Riverside label on an album called “Hope-full.” After Elmo’s passing in 1967, she decided to devote her career to promoting Elmo’s music. During her marriage to bassist Walter Booker, Jr., they created two ensembles called ELMOllenium and the Elmo Hope Project. Bertha served as an artist-in-residence for the New Jersey State Council on the Arts where she performed with Dizzy Gillespie, Frank Foster, Nat Adderley, and Philly Joe Jones. She gained exposure for her own music with the groups Jazzberry Jam and The Bertha Hope Trio, and she toured extensively in Japan. She teaches advanced jazz ensemble and continues to perform in the New York area.

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