BUENA PARK, Calif.—Hosted by Katie Couric with performances by Tony Bennett and his quartet with a special guest performance by Sting, the annual Exploring the Arts (ETA) fundraiser held October 4 at Cipriani’s mid-town in New York City raised $1.2 million. A star-studded red carpet affair, benefactors attending included Alec Baldwin, Jon Bon Jovi, Bryant Gumbel, Donna Karan, Lorraine Bracco, former New York Governor Mario Cuomo, Nancy Pelosi, Barbara Walters, and NYC Mayor Michael Bloomberg.
ETA is a nonprofit organization founded in 1999 by Tony Bennett and his wife, Susan Benedetto. The organization’s mission is to strengthen the role of the arts in public high school education. ETA currently supports 14 partner schools in all five boroughs of New York City and reaches more than 10,000 public school students, the majority of who live below the poverty line. ETA’s flagship school, the Frank Sinatra School of the Arts located in Astoria, Queens (the birthplace of Mr. Bennett), was founded by the Bennetts and opened in 2001.
Bennett is set to release VIVA DUETS on October 22, a CD featuring Latin recording artists, and The ZEN OF BENNETT, which was created and conceived by son Danny with a theatrical opening in NYC on October 24 (LA, SF, Chicago on November 2). In November, Bennett’s latest book “Life Is A Gift” will be released.
Audio production for the gala was provided by ACIR Professional (Egg Harbor Township, NJ), and included a Yamaha CL5 digital audio console with two RIO 3224-D remote I/Os used at front of house, a Yamaha PM5D-RH used for monitors, and Yamaha T3n amplifiers for monitor wedges. Additional products brought in by ACIR included Shure, A-T, Heil, Neuman and Sennheiser microphones and wireless monitor systems. The company also provided all of the backline instruments. Bennett LD, Ron Farino, designed the lighting for the event.
Long-time Bennett front of house engineer, production manager for the event, and co-owner of ACIR professional had his first opportunity to mix the show on the new Yamaha CL5. An avid fan of the Yamaha PM1D and PM5D, Young said using the CL5 for its compactness certainly made sense based on the footprint allocated for FOH in the Cipriani room. “I was quite pleased about the performance of the CL5 and how well it sounded,” states Young. “The console is very easy to navigate.”
For more information on Exploring the Arts, visit www.exploringthearts.org.
For more information on ACIR Professional, visit www.acirpro.com.
For more information on the Yamaha CL5, visit www.yamahaca.com.
PHOTO ID: Tom Young, Bennett’s front of house engineer and production manager
PHOTO CREDIT: Digital Warmth
About Yamaha Commercial Audio Systems, Inc.:
Celebrating 125 years of Passion and Performance, and 25 years in the manufacturer of high quality digital audio consoles, Yamaha Commercial Audio Systems, Inc. (YCAS) provides a full line of integrated professional audio products offering complete systems solutions for the broadcast, sound reinforcement/installed sound, touring, commercial recording, and post production markets. With the addition of NEXO to the product line, the company remains the official U.S. and Canadian distributor for all NEXO speaker models. YCAS offers comprehensive in-house and field product training for its customers, a dedicated dealer network, and 24/7 technical support.