LOU'S VIEWS: Feinstein and company raise funds, pay tribute

Back to TopCommentsE-mailPrintBookmark and Share
Lou Harry

Philanthropic arts patrons are asked time and again to attend fundraisers for their favorite organizations (and for the organizations where their friends have seats on the boards). The challenge for the organizations themselves is to create events that feel less obligatory and more pleasurable. Ideally, those pleasures tie in with the core mission of the group in question.

One group that succeeds at that task is the Center for the Performing Arts, which offered its Great American Songbook Hall of Fame Gala induction on June 21.

Oh, you could complain about the after-party’s long food lines or the awkward placement of bands (primarily facing walls and windows rather than attendees in multiple lounges). But the core event itself—the honoring of the latest round of inductees into the Great American Songbook Hall of Fame—was perfectly in tune with the organization.

The point—in addition to raising money for the center—is to pay tribute to performers and composers “responsible for creating America’s soundtrack.” Think of it as a more narrowly focused version of The

ae-views-johnny-mathis-with-award-hi-res-1col.jpg Legendary vocalist Johnny Mathis accepts his honorary award at the Center for the Performing Arts. (Photo courtesy of Angela Talley)

Kennedy Center Honors. This year offered tributes to Shirley Jones (yes, from “The Partridge Family,” but also from the film versions of “Carousel,” “Oklahoma!” and “The Music Man.”), Johnny Mathis, Linda Ronstadt and, posthumously, Nat King Cole.

With Jones and Mathis graciously accepting awards—although not performing—Natalie Cole charmingly standing in for her father, and Michael Feinstein hosting (and, in good voice, working in performances of three songs), there was plenty for those who wanted to see “names.” (Ronstadt, battling Parkinson’s disease, could not attend.)

The evening’s greatest pleasure was a new one, at least to me. Singer Denzal Sinclaire, backed by a terrific band of local players, offered a tribute to Cole that honored the man without imitating him. I don’t usually like medleys—they tend to be a “Remember this one?” hit parade with little time to plumb the heart of each song—but Sinclaire managed to put truth into every syllable with a sound that sent me running to YouTube as soon as I got home. I can’t recall a time when I so quickly became a fan of a performer. Here’s hoping he finds his way here for a full concert soon.

Also charming the crowd was Julia Goodwin, last year’s Great American Songbook Vocal Competition winner. That not-to-be-missed July contest serves as a nice companion piece to the Hall of Fame Gala, one event honoring those who have already contributed to the American musical canon and the other encouraging the next generation to pick up the torch (song).•


This column appears weekly. Send information on upcoming arts and entertainment events to lharry@ibj.com.


Post a comment to this story

We reserve the right to remove any post that we feel is obscene, profane, vulgar, racist, sexually explicit, abusive, or hateful.
You are legally responsible for what you post and your anonymity is not guaranteed.
Posts that insult, defame, threaten, harass or abuse other readers or people mentioned in IBJ editorial content are also subject to removal. Please respect the privacy of individuals and refrain from posting personal information.
No solicitations, spamming or advertisements are allowed. Readers may post links to other informational websites that are relevant to the topic at hand, but please do not link to objectionable material.
We may remove messages that are unrelated to the topic, encourage illegal activity, use all capital letters or are unreadable.

Messages that are flagged by readers as objectionable will be reviewed and may or may not be removed. Please do not flag a post simply because you disagree with it.

Sponsored by

facebook - twitter on Facebook & Twitter

Follow on TwitterFollow IBJ on Facebook:
Follow on TwitterFollow IBJ's Tweets on these topics:
Subscribe to IBJ
  1. Again, Maria.... how much are YOU contributing? The man doesn't HAVE to give a red cent! What don't you get about that? And, I know this might actually require some actual "facts", but can you please point me to the parking garage that the city gave to him?

  2. Another internet tuff guy I see. And what would the basis of taking the person to jail? If they were drunk, yea. But if not, there would be no jailable offense. All these gestapo, Nazi, jackboots are running SCARED. When the SHTF in this country who's side are you going to be on? The citzens, or the establishment? Better make up your mind quick because it's not far off. I would rather be trying to make friends than enemies. But no worries my "friend", God will take care of you and your likes in good time. It tells us that in the bible. If you stand, support and help carry out the plans of evil rulers, you will NOT be spared the wrath of God. That simple. All you can do is repent now and ask God to forgive you.

  3. Yes, Ersal, thank you for donating a whole $75,000, while the city gives you a parking garage for free and is going to pay for a multi million dollar stadium for you. I'd be donating money too if I was on welfare.

  4. I live and work in Broad Ripple and agree 100% that the traffic is not a significant problem. It can be slow at some times, but hey...this is an urban area. As for the development itself...HOORAY. Office and retail development brings people during the day, something that our community needs much more of. Thank goodness people are finally waking up to take advantage of the serene White River views. The BRVA land us committee endorsed the project because they know how these kind of projects help offset the cries of "too many bars". Pray that this development, and the proposed major investment by Browning, move forward. And remember Good Earth, these will mean hundreds of daytime people - potential shoppers for your store.

  5. Under current, previous existing law, this new law would be unconstitutional. Not that supposedly having to have a driver's license to drive isn't in the first place.