LJet Productions' FRAN ALLEN-LEAKE – Music Producer, Tour Director & Artist Relations Specialist first began honing her craft as both a jazz vocalist and as a top-rated entertainment public relations specialist handling local and Broadway Touring musicals. She is now the principal Owner & Chief Producer of her LJET PRODUCTIONS – that specializes in live and recorded Music Production and Concerts as well as Tour Direction and Artist Relations. As a 35-year award-winning entertainment industry veteran she has worked – both in the U.S. and abroad – with a wide variety of clientele including Motown legend Stevie Wonder; jazz legends Ramsey Lewis and Archie Shepp; syndicated radio host Tom Joyner; rock’s Dennis DeYoung (formerly of Styx), Shirley King “Daughter of the Blues; ” gospel music’s Thompson Community Singers and Chicago Mass Choir; NARADA Records; United One Records, Sony/Myrrh Records; Spirit Feel Records; and Amethyst Entertainment (Fox-TV’s annual The Joy of Christmas and WCIU-TV’s Story of Easter specials.)
Fran is a longtime voting member of The Recording Academy® (the Grammy organization), and a former First Vice President of its Chicago Chapter. She is also a Grammy® P&E wing member; long-time member of the Engineering and Recording Society (EARS); sits on the EARS Board of Directors and co-edits the EARDrum, the organization’s quarterly publication. In 2007, she directed Stevie Wonder’s first North American/World Tour in more than 10 years, and continues her association with his Wonder organization to this day.
A 2012 inductee -- and VIP member -- of Cambridge’s Worldwide Who’s Who, the same year she co-produced Chicago Blues Mamas for Obama, a live musical showcase and victory celebration for the re-election of President Barack Obama and featuring 10 of Chicago’s top female Blues artists at Chicago’s Mayne Stage Theatre. The resulting CD, “Fired Up & Ready to Go”, was produced by Fran. She also produced the Illinois Warrior Summit’s 4th Annual Welcome Home Celebration Concert 2011 benefitting returning soldiers and veterans at Chicago’s Soldier Field; later that year, she served as Touring Director for the 2011 Australian tour “One World, One People” for the Chicago Soul Collective. Currently, Fran is Special Projects/Production Consultant for the national tour of Sweet Sisters of Zion: DeLois Barrett Campbell & The Barrett Sisters movie; is reprising her producer role for the Chicago Blues Mamas Tour; works closely with CIMMfest (Chicago International Movies) as a member of its Advisory Board; and is producing a series Stroke Awareness Concerts for 2014-2015. She is reprising her role as producer for Caribbean artist Glawdys n’Dee’s new CD slated for 2015.
Considered a “producer’s producer,” Fran strictly adheres to the philosophy that it is the artist’s musical vision – not her own – that she seeks to portray. She is fervently committed to Chicago music and its makers and tirelessly works to broaden the reach of both nationally and globally. Fran’s favorite quote by Hans Christen Andersen is one reflected in her daily life …”when words fail, music speaks.”