Thrilling and Emotional Tribute to Marvin Hamlisch @ Juilliard
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Barbra Streisand, Aretha Franklin, Liza Minnelli, Itzhak Perlman, Lang Lang, Michael Feinstein, Chris Botti, Maria Friedman, Brian d'Arcy James, Rob Fisher, Essential Voices USA, former cast members of A Chorus Line and cast members of The Nutty Professor came together in top form for an invitation only event on Tuesday, September 18, 2012 to pay tribute to Marvin Hamlisch at the beautiful Peter J. Sharp Theatre at Juilliard.
The place was packed and 'Broadway heavy', with just about every star you could think of present for an emotional and thrilling evening devoted to the beloved Marvin Hamlisch.
A child prodigy, he was accepted into Juilliard before he was seven...yes, seven. We were reminded at the start of the evening by his wife Terre about just how early his talent shined through and about how he spent the rest of his life giving back to others with his friendship, time and musical genius. He never said "no" to a request to help out for a worthy cause, and tonight kicked off a very worthy cause in his name, of a new scholarship fund at the school. For information about giving online, visit www.juilliard.edu/giving. Let's help support the next generation of Marvin Hamlisch's.
From the 'Essential Voices USA' choir that started the show, to the skill of musicians like Itzhak Perlman, Lang Lang and Chris Botti to the emotion of best friend Liza Minnelli, the acting of Maria Friedman and Brian d'Arcy James to the soaring vocal talents of Aretha Franklin and Barbra Streisand (yes, she's still got it, and then some - and also earned the only standing ovation of the night!), it was an unforgettable night. We also got a tease of THE NUTTY PROFESSOR which hopefully will make its way into town sooner rather than later.
Here's who sang what:
ESSTENTIAL VOICES USA - 'Anatomy of Peace'
CHRIS BOTTI - 'What I Did for Love' from A Chorus Line
LIZA MINNELLI - 'If You Really Knew Me' from They're Playing My Song
DENA DIGIACINTO, EMILY FLETCHER, HOLLIE HOWARD - 'At the Ballet' from A Chorus Line
ARETHA FRANKLIN - 'Nobody Does It Better' from The Spy Who Loved Me into 'Deep River'
ROB FISHER - 'Theme' from Sophie's Choice
BRIAN D'ARCY JAMES - 'At the Fountain' from Sweet Smell of Success
ENSEMBLE - 'While I Still Have the Time' from The Nutty Professor
MARIA FRIEDMAN - 'Nothing' from A Chorus Line
ITZHAK PERLMAN - 'I Cannot Hear the City' from Sweet Smell of Success
LANG LANG - 'Overture' from A Chorus Line
BARBRA STREISAND - 'The Way We Were' from The Way We Were and 'Through the Eyes of Love' from Ice Castles.
There will never be another talent like his, and tonight was most certainly a worthy celebration and reminder of that. Once again, for more information on the scholarship and how to donate, www.juilliard.edu/giving
Posted on September 18, 2012 - by
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About the Author:Robert Diamond founded BroadwayWorld.com in 2003, which has now become the largest theatre web site in the world. He also serves as the site's Editor-in-Chief, covering Broadway and beyond, with specific local coverage for 100 cities in the United States, 30 countries worldwide and 15 other related areas of entertainment - including dance, opera, fashion, concerts, comedy, films, television and more.
The 2001 Syracuse University graduate (School of Information Studies) is also the owner of Wisdom Digital Media, an award-winning leading design company for entertainment and technology web sites. In his previous life, he held an executive position for the world's leading publisher of technology magazines, web sites and conferences and, as a result, was named among the "Top thirty magazine industry executives under the age of 30" by FOLIO Magazine.
Diamond got his start in the entertainment field, accidentally, when he created the 'official web site' (while in college) for Michael Crawford, the popular actor and original Tony and Olivier Award-winning star of THE PHANTOM OF THE OPERA. (He still blames Crawford - and credits him - for anything that goes particularly right or wrong during an average day.)
As a respected member of the Broadway and theatre community, Diamond also served as Lead Producer for a series of sold-out shows using the BroadwayWorld.com 'brand' for a set of 'Standing Ovations' concerts, which also branched out into titles that included Holiday Shows and even more specific concerts like 'From Stage to Screen and Back Again' in tandem with publishers and movie studios. All proceeds were in turn donated to Broadway Cares / Equity Fights AIDS, the industry's leader in aid for performers in need.
Robert lives in Manhattan with his wife and two dogs, growing the business and getting little sleep. In addition, you can usually find him in a theatre many nights a week.
Robert's very popular blog, 'The Broadway Pulse' appears daily on BroadwayWorld.com and he also writes weekly about theatre for the USA Network's Character Approved blog.
In December of last year, Diamond was one of 5 Syracuse University Alumni, all having achieved success in the world of start-ups, business growth and venture capital, participating on a panel addressing young alumni who are currently pursuing their dreams of running their own business and experiencing the day to day challenges of a startup. It is part of the university's new Student Accelerator Program, for which Rob was recommended by Syracuse University's i-School.