Article from The Hollywood Reporter
NEW YORK - David Gest, a fellow who has produced more than his share of galas and extravaganzas throughout the past two decades (raising considerable funds for various charities en route), has decided to not let the year fade away without delivering one more biggie before the millennium. Come December 4 in Manhattan, he's going to produce this year's American Cinema Awards as ``An All Star Holiday Gala Starring Whitney Houston,'' guaranteed to be a hot year-end ticket and geared to raise additional funds for the Whitney Houston Foundation for Children as well as Gest's ACA Foundation.
The honourees that night will be an illustrious group: The robust Anthony Quinn, who will receive the ACA's Lifetime Achievement in the Arts award (Gregory Peck will be flying in from the West Coast to present the honour to him); Rodney Jenkins and Kevin Briggs, to be honoured for Distinguished Achievement in Contemporary Music; Jimmy Webb, getting a nod for Lifetime Achievement in Songwriting; and former Doobie Brothers lead singer Michael McDonald and his wife Amy, who will receive the 1999 Leo Jaffe Achievement Award, named in honour of the late chairman emeritus of Columbia Pictures. Additionally, the ACA's annual Gloria Swanson Humanitarian Award will go for the first time to two major movers and shakers from the field of radio: Tom Poleman, senior vp programming at WHTZ/Z100, and Frankie Blue, vp operations and programming at KTV/103.5.
The things that always make a Gest gala worth writing home about (or writing a column about) are (a) the powerhouse entertainers he consistently lines up for these events and (b) the celebrity guests he gathers from all over the world to add glamour and wattage. Claudia Cardinale will be coming from Italy and John Mills from England, along with a major contingent from the West Coast, flying courtesy of American Airlines and American Eagle, co-sponsors of the event.
But the piece de resistance will be the headliners who will be entertaining the crowd that night in the Marriott Marquis' Broadway Ballroom, among them Whitney Houston, the equally hot Marc Anthony and Brian McKnight, Michael Bolton, Petula Clark (during a two-week hiatus from her touring ``Sunset Boulevard'') and others, including Sunday, a singing group discovered by Houston and just signed by Capitol Records.
That night, Gest will formally announce the creation of an Alzheimer's Wing to be located at the Actors Fund of America Home in Inglewood, N.J., and named in honour of long-time ACA supporters Quinn and Jaffe.
NEWSFILE: 2 NOVEMBER 1999
NEW YORK, July 12 -- Whitney Houston will perform the national anthem for the Inaugural WNBA All-Star Game at Madison Square Garden on Wednesday, July 14. Her performance and the game will be televised live in primetime on ESPN at 7:30 p.m. ET.
Now in its third season, the WNBA made sports history when it launched in 1997 and has been a force in helping women's sports gain increased national and international attention. The league plays a 32-game regular season, with national games televised weekly on NBC, Lifetime, and ESPN. The WNBA has 12 franchises in New York, Los Angeles, Houston, Charlotte, Cleveland, Orlando, Minneapolis, Detroit, Phoenix, Washington, D.C., Sacramento and Salt Lake City and will expand into Miami, Indianapolis, Seattle, and Portland for the 2000 season. This is the first annual WNBA All-Star Game. The game will feature the top players from each conference, with the starters selected by the fans.
Houston is currently on the 17-city U.S. leg of The Whitney Houston World Tour '99, which includes performances at The Theater at Madison Square Garden in New York City on July 14 and 15, Fiddler's Green in Denver on July 26, The Universal Amphitheater in Los Angeles on July 29 and 30 and The Concord Pavilion in San Francisco on August 1. An additional show has just been added in Memphis at the Mid-South Coliseum on July 23.
NEWSFILE: 12 JULY 1999
Whitney Houston drives the crowds wild with a guest appearance at NYC Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgendered Pride Celebration. Her performance was not advertised and was kept under wraps until the Diva arrived at Chelsea Piers where in-between 7,000-10,000 people were in attendance. She followed the performance by Erin Henderson and when they made the announcement and then appeared on stage. The energy went right off the scale! She performed two sizzling hot songs - remixes of HH and INRBIO with the crowds singing right along with her. At one point, a stage assistant came on-stage to give her the red fur jacket that was featured in the Oprah Show but she jokingly pretended to kick her away since the tempertures were in the mid-90s. One individual who was a guest of the committee hosting the show said that she was in her glory and really enjoyed being there. Bobby Brown was with her but stayed backstage along with two massive bodyguards.
NEWSFILE: 28 JUNE 1999
Whitney Houston will appear on The Oprah Show on 18 June 1999.
NEWSFILE: 11 JUNE 1999
VH-1 Press Release...
[VH-1 Press Release regarding Whitney's inclusion to Divas Live]
VH1 ELECTS WHITNEY HOUSTON AS FIRST DIVA FOR VH1 DIVAS LIVE 99
In early February, Whitney Houston was the first Artist to be selected to participate in "VH1 Divas Live '99."
The concert will be broadcast Live on April
13 from New Yorks Beacon Theater at 9:00PM.
"During the past decade, Houston has become an international superstar in the worlds of music, film and television. Her hits include I Will Always Love You, Im Every Woman, Where Do Broken Hearts Go, I Wanna Dance With Somebody (Who Loves Me), Exhale (Shoop Shoop), The Greatest Love Of All and the current smash, Heartbreak Hotel from her latest album, My Love Is Your Love. A five time Grammy winner, to date Houston has sold over 100 million albums worldwide. As an actress, Houston has starred in such films as THE BODYGUARD, WAITING TO EXHALE and THE PREACHERS WIFE. Her role as both star and Executive Producer of the Wonderful World of Disney all-star production of Rogers and Hammersteins Cinderella brought further praise and seven Emmy award nominations."
VH1 Divas Live" debuted on April 14, 1998 from the Beacon Theater with a legendary line-up -- Mariah Carey, Celine Dion, Aretha Franklin, Gloria Estefan and Shania Twain -- and became the highest-rated show in VH1's history. This year, it promises to be even bigger.
VH1 Divas Live raises funds for VH1 Save The Music, the pro-social initiative that supports music education in public schools around the country. VH1 and Epic Records released the VH1 Divas Live CD last fall, and it is expected to raise at least $250,000 for VH1 Save The Music in 1999.
VH1 Divas Live 99 will be sponsored by Maybelline, The New Dodge, Visa, Neutrogena, and Chrysler/Plymouth.
NEWSFILE: 31 MARCH 1999
Brandy Joins VH-1 Divas '99...
[This article taken from VH-1 confirming Brandy on the Divas '99 line-up]
Brandy will join Whitney Houston, Tina Turner and Cher to perform on "VH1 Divas Live '99," to be broadcast live on Tuesday, April 13 at 9:00 PM (ET/PT) from New York's Beacon Theater. Additional performers and presenters will be announced soon.
Teen sensation Brandy is a multiplatinum recording artist and the star of her own hit TV show, "Moesha." "Never Say Never," her second album, has been certified quadruple platinum and is currently in its 35th week on the Billboard 200. "Never Say Never's" success has been fueled by its top-charting singles: "The Boy Is Mine," which spent 13 weeks at #1 on Billboard's "Hot 100" chart; the #1 Urban smash, "Top Of The World;" and the current "Have You Ever?".
Signed to a recording contract at the age of 14, Brandy's self-titled debut shot up the charts, and was also certified quadruple platinum. Brandy has gone on to win an American Music Award, many Soul Train Awards, including the Lady of Soul "Entertainer of the Year" Award, several NAACP Image Awards, multiple Grammy nominations, and has achieved six consecutive Top Ten singles, including two platinum hits, "Baby" and "Sittin' Up In My Room," and two gold hits, "I Wanna Be Down" and "Brokenhearted." In addition to her TV series, her acting credits include starring as Cinderella in the top-rated ABC-TV motion picture, which also starred Brandy's idol, Whitney Houston. Brandy recently completed production on "Double Platinum," a made-for-TV film in which she stars alongside Diana Ross. The telefilm is due to air on ABC in May 1999.
Last year, "VH1 Divas Live" debuted from the Beacon Theater with a legendary line-up -- Mariah Carey, Celine Dion, Aretha Franklin, Gloria Estefan and Shania Twain -- and became the highest-rated single broadcast in VH1's history.
"VH1 Divas Live" raises funds for VH1 Save The Music, the pro-social initiative that supports music education in public schools around the country. VH1 and Epic Records released the "VH1 Divas Live" CD last fall, and it is expected to raise at least $250,000 for VH1 Save The Music in 1999.
"VH1 Divas Live '99" will be sponsored by Maybelline, Visa, Cibavision, The New Dodge, Playtex, Chrysler/Plymouth, Armani Fragrances, Best Buy and Neutrogena.
NEWSFILE: 30 MARCH 1999
Cher Joins VH1 Divas Live '99...
[Article from VH-1 Newswire]
Cher, who is at the top of the charts with her smash hit, "Believe," will perform on "VH1 Divas Live '99," to be broadcast live on Tuesday, April 13 at 9:00 PM (ET/PT) from New York's Beacon Theater.
Cher joins Whitney Houston and Tina Turner, both of whom
were announced last month. Additional performers and presenters will be announced in the
near future. Cher is one of the world's most famous and intriguing celebrities, having
made her mark as a pop music icon and as an Academy-Award winning actress. Cher burst onto
the music scene with husband Sonny Bono in the 1960s, scoring hits with such classic songs
as "I Got You Babe" and "The Beat Goes On." Cher went on to a
triumphant solo career and critically acclaimed performances in such films as
"Silkwood," "The Witches Of Eastwick" and "Moonstruck," for
which she won the 1987 Best Actress Oscar.
NEWSFILE: 17 MARCH 1999
[Two Divas Believe In Babyface - From USA Today]
Whitney Houston and Mariah Carey said Tuesday they'll sing the Kenny "Babyface" Edmonds version of When You Believe at the Oscars. That's the latest twist in a controversy brewing since the original version of the song, by Stephen Schwartz, sung during The Prince of Egypt by Michelle Pfeiffer and Sally Dworsky, received an Oscar nomination. Edmonds' version, with about 15% more music, is sung by Houston and Carey over the end credits of the film and became a hit single. Schwartz did not allow Edmonds' name to be included on the Academy Awards application. Rules allow only one version of a song to be nominated. "It wasn't that I was angry; I was just hurt," Edmonds told USA TODAY Tuesday. He added: "It's my problem. I just hope that the academy will now look at changing the rules."
NEWSFILE: 11 MARCH 1999
Oscar Performance Controversy...
[LA Times Article]
Houston and Carey have been asked to perform the song at the telecast on march 21, but academy officials say they won't be singing their hit pop single. Instead, they will be asked to perform a new arrangement of the michelle pfeiffer-sally dworsky song.
"The songs are almost always rearranged for the oscar show anyway," said Bruce Davis, the Academy executive director. But tuesday, a publicist for Carey said the two singers expected to perform the Schwartz-Babyface rendition and only that rendition.
Edmonds said that he didn't want to speak out about the controversy until friends expressed outrage that the academy would have Houston and Carey perform his version of the song at the oscars, even though he was not eligible.
"I wouldn't want to take that chance away from them", he said, "but I don't think it's right for them to do my version of the song because I am not eligible."
When informed that the academy would have them perform another version, edmonds replied: "If they are asked to perform a different kind of version, I don't know if they would want to do that. I don't know if Clive Davis would be interested in that. we do so much to get them to sing that version that to change it now wouldn't be easy.
Edmond's attorney, peter lopez of century city, said that edmonds is contractually credited with writing 15% of the Houston-Carey version. "he was clearly the catalyst for the two singers to come together because of his unique relationship with both of them." Lopez said. "...to have the academy's rules dictate that that song cannot be considered for academy consideration is unfathomable."
NEWSFILE: 24 FEBRUARY 1999
Los Angeles: Whitney Houston headed an eight-strong line-up of R&B divas at a glamorous curtainraiser to tonight's American Grammy Awards.
Whitney, who last week appeared at the Brit Awards in London, was the star turn at an eve-of-Grammys party thrown by her record company Arista. The highlight of the evening came when she reprised her hit Heartbreak Hotel with Kelly Price and Faith Evans, and they were then joined by audience members Cissy Houston (Whitney's mum), Monica, Mary J Blige, Deborah Cox and new Arista Records signing Shanice.
"It was incredible," says Music Week editor-in-chief Steve Redmond. "Eight of the greatest R&B singers in the world singing their hearts out." Sadly the performance, although recorded, is unlikely to be released.
Whitney's show-stopping performance followed an all-star line-up of Arista artists, which included Grammy nominees Sarah McLachlan and Monica, Deborah Cox and Naughty By Nature. They appeared before an even more star-studded audience, including comedian Jerry Seinfeld, sports star Magic Johnson, actor Wesley Snipes, Puff Daddy, Tony Bennett and the Backstreet Boys. The Grammys begin at 4pm local time (Midnight in London) at the Shrine Auditorium in LA.
NEWSFILE: 24 FEBRUARY 1999
It's About Time...
There's some justice in Whitney having such a high profile in the UK this week - Brits get just a touch of all the exposure the US fans have had access to over the past couple of months. Whitney and Arista can be forgiven for the lack of promotion in the UK - you don't get much more high profile than this:
Tuesday 16 February -
Whitney will perform at The Brits, London Arena, Docklands;
Expect a re-run of The Brits at the weekend as well.
NEWSFILE: 15 FEBRUARY 1999
Here is a big news from Germany! Whitney appears on the biggest show in German television. It`s the show "Wetten daß" which is seen by around 20 million people every show. I`m sure, she will top the assistance of Bryan Adams and Mel C who will even be in. It is confirmed that she will sing "It`s Not Right But It's Okay" - the new single track released in Europe. I even recognized that important german radio station are starting to play this brilliant song. The show setting on Saturday 20th of February will without question be a great promotion for Whitney.
NEWSFILE: 10 FEBRUARY 1999
Brits: WHITNEY HOUSTON IS SPECIAL LIVE GUEST
[Article taken from www.brits.co.uk]
US superstar WHITNEY HOUSTON has been confirmed as the surprise live performer at this year's BRIT Awards in association with MasterCard show at London Arena on February 16.
Platinum-selling R&B queen Whitney will join the artists already scheduled to perform - ROBBIE WILLIAMS, BOYZONE, CHER, THE CORRS, EURYTHMICS, MANIC STREET PREACHERS, DAVID BOWIE, PLACEBO. Popstars BILLIE, STEPS and B*WITCHED will join together to star in a medley of ABBA songs in a tribute to the Swedish pop maestros.
The BRIT Awards ceremony featuring live performances will be televised in the UK on Wednesday, February 17 at 8pm on ITV.
NEWSFILE: 5 FEBRUARY 1999
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