CCM stars share stage with Lady Gaga at the Grammys

Brian Newman, Steve Kortyka and Alex Smith perform with Gaga in her tribute to Tony Bennett

You might have noticed an enthusiastic trumpet player in a white tuxedo performing next to Lady Gaga at the Grammy Awards last weekend. CCM alumnus Brian Newman (Jazz Studies, att. ’99-’03) is a longtime collaborator with the pop star-turned-belter, and joined her on stage in her tribute to Tony Bennett during the 64th Annual Grammy Awards ceremony on April 3, 2022. 

Newman was pictured performing with Gaga on stage in Variety magazine's coverage of the Grammy Awards. Watch the performance on Lady Gaga's Facebook page.

Brian Newman, Lady Gaga, Michael Beardon, Donald Barrett, Daniel Foose, Alex Smith and Steve Kortyka at the Grammy Awards.

Brian Newman, Lady Gaga, Michael Beardon, Donald Barrett, Daniel Foose, Alex Smith and Steve Kortyka at the Grammy Awards.

Lady Gaga has worked on a number of duet projects with Tony Bennett, who has Alzheimer's and was unable to attend the awards ceremony. The duo's recent album Love for Sale, which won two Grammy Awards, was Bennett's final recording project. Newman worked with Lady Gaga and Bennet on the award-winning album and on their first collaboration, Cheek to Cheek — he was the band leader, trumpet player and an arranger on both recordings. 

Newman wasn't the only CCM alumnus on stage at the Grammy Awards though. His long-time bandmates Alex Smith (BM Jazz Studies, '01), piano; and Steve Kortyka (BM Jazz, '04), saxophone, joined Newman and Gaga for the performance and on the red carpet, along with bassist Daniel Foose, musician Donald Barrett and maestro Michael Beardon. 

Newman is also the band leader and arranger for Lady Gaga's Jazz and Piano show during her Las Vegas residency and has his own late-night Vegas residency at the Nomad Library called "Brian Newman: After Dark."

In June 2021, Newman was a guest on CCM’s “School, Stage & Screen” podcast, where he discussed his work with Lady Gaga (including an injury from her famed disco ball), life as a performer in Vegas and the time he spends away from his trumpet.

Headshot of Alexandra Doyle

Alexandra Doyle

CCM Graduate Assistant , Marketing + Communications

Alexandra Doyle is a doctoral candidate studying clarinet performance at CCM. Alexandra’s master’s degree is also from CCM, and she holds bachelor’s degrees in clarinet performance and journalism from the University of Houston.

Featured image at the top: Lady Gaga and Brian Newman performing on stage at the Grammy Awards. Photo/Christopher Polk for Variety.

Additional Contacts

Curt Whitacre | Director of Marketing/Communications | UC College-Conservatory of Music

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