HOLLYWOOD ELITE JOIN ACTRESS SHERYL LEE RALPH TO CELEBRATE THE 20TH ANNIVERSARY OF DIVAS SIMPLY SINGING ON OCTOBER 9TH!
Online PR News – 04-October-2010 – – (LOS ANGELES, CA. )-- One Diva. One Song. One Night to touch a million lives. Actress and activist Sheryl Lee Ralph is proud to announce the all-star, mega-watt line up for the 20th Annual Divas Simply Singing! AIDS benefit Concert on October 9th (7:30pm) at the Saban Theatre in Los Angeles, CA.: Grammy nominated singer–songwriter–producer Teena Marie, Grammy-Award Winning Artist Jody Watley, Two-time Grammy Nominee Ledisi, Grammy Nominee Kelly Price, Jennifer Lewis, Naturi Naughton (Lottery Ticket, Fame, 3LW), Arielle Jacobs (In the Heights), Holly Robinson Peete (The Apprentice) and original Dreamgirls Loretta Devine and Ralph herself will light up the stage! Neo Soul Artist Rahsaan Patterson will be the resident DIVO paying tribute to the ladies. Diane Louie (American Idol, The Tonight Show With Jay Leno, NAACP Image Awards) will serve as musical director. Gloria Loring, Victoria Rowell, Pauletta Washington, Desiree Coleman-Jackson, Shanice, and Lisa Raye are also among Hollywood favorites who will pay tribute in addition to many other surprise celebrity guests.
Created and produced by Ralph, Divas Simply Singing! is an annual benefit concert, produced in conjunction with The DIVA Foundation to help raise money and awareness about HIV/AIDS. DIVA in the DIVA Foundation stands for Divinely Inspired Victoriously Anointed.
Divas Simply Singing! is the longest consecutive running AIDS benefit concert in the United States and has raised more than $5 million dollars to help AIDS organizations in Los Angeles and around the world. This amazing evening of song and entertainment spotlights the talents of divas from all walks of show business.
This year, Divas Simply Singing! is proud to benefit the DIVA Foundation and Women Alive Coalition. In the past, proceeds from the concert have benefited organizations such as AIDS Healthcare Foundation, Project Angel Food, Caring for Babies With AIDS, Minority AIDS Project, the Safe Place for Pediatric AIDS, the National Minority AIDS Council and the Black AIDS Institute.
Divas Simply Singing! will be held on Saturday, October 9, 2010 at 7:30 p.m. at the Saban Theatre (formerly Wilshire Theatre), located at 8440 Wilshire Blvd. in Beverly Hills. Tickets prices range from $35 to $250. For ticket information, contact the box office of the Saban Theatre Beverly Hills at 323.655.0111.
Divas Simply Singing! is sponsored by fashion designer Merck, Tadashi Shoji, Bristol Myers Squibb, American Airlines, Tibotec, Soft Sheen Carson and Gilead Sciences. The After Party is sponsored by reality TV and radio personality Wendell James and will take place at Gonpachi Beverly Hills.
“It is a thrill and a Blessing to celebrate the 20th Anniversary of DIVAS Simply Singing! I just wish we didn't have to do it. HIV/AIDS awareness and the need to break the silence and stigma still connected to this disease is nearest and dearest to my heart. It has been 20 years of blood, sweat, tears of joy, and true triumphs. In making this 20 year mark, DIVAS Simply Singing! is the longest consecutive running musical AIDS benefit in the country and remains a beacon of hope for those who are impacted by the disease. The DIVAS and I continue to spread awareness, raise funds, and empower others in order to combat HIV/AIDS. I am proud that so many wonderfully talented people have come together over the years to support the cause. This year is dedicated not only to the many friends I have lost, but to everyone who has infected or affected by HIV/AIDS. I encourage us all to get tested and visit www.testogether.org knowing your status is power! Twenty years ago they told me this event was a waste of my time and had nothing to do with me. But the years have passed and we now know that AIDS affects us all!!” states, actress and humanitarian Sheryl Lee Ralph.
About Divas Simply Singing!
With a unique blend of song, entertainment and empowerment, this oft-praised and highly-anticipated event continues to attract some of the most talented women in show business, uniting in song against HIV/AIDS. Talents such as Chaka Khan, Patti LaBelle, Oleta Addams, Melissa Manchester, Dianne Reeves, Roberta Flack, Eartha Kitt, Stephanie Mills, Fergie, Raven, Loretta Devine, Jennifer Holiday, Miss Nancy Wilson and many others have raised their voices in song and support of Divas Simply Singing!
About the Diva Foundation
The Diva Foundation is a national nonprofit 501c (3) charitable organization founded by Sheryl Lee Ralph in 1990 as a memorial to the many friends she lost to HIV/AIDS while in the original Broadway company of DreamGirls. The organization focuses on generating resources and coordinating activities to create awareness of and combat against HIV/AIDS. The Diva Foundation utilizes music and entertainment as a vehicle to inform, educate and erase the stigma still attached to this disease. In 2005, Sheryl Lee Ralph and the DIVA Foundation received the first Red Ribbon Leadership Award at the United Nations on World AIDS Day for the unique use of the arts in fighting HIV/AIDS.
About Sheryl Lee Ralph
It’s difficult to remember a time when people died in numbers to great to imagine and families turned their backs on loved ones dying in silence, stigma and shame. It’s hard to remember that people didn’t talk about AIDS in America but Sheryl Lee Ralph has never forgotten. That is why she created the DIVA (Divinely Inspired Victoriously Anointed) Foundation. Her dedicated commitment has led to the 19th Annual Divas Simply Singing! And her critically acclaimed one-woman show, “Sometimes I Cry,” a production written and performed by Ralph, which explores the lives of women infected and affected by HIV/AIDS and continues to tour the world.
“If was fortunate for the country – and world – that two years ago Ralph became sufficiently outraged over the silence about HIV/AIDS and how it kills too many people, too many women, to many black Americans. Not only did she find her voice when writing Sometimes I Cry. She found her calling.” – Mary Martin Niepold, Winston-Salem Journal
With continued success on stage, screen, television and music along with her philanthropic endeavors, Sheryl Lee Ralph has never been one to rest on her laurels. A triple threat Dreamgirl, Ralph is an acclaimed veteran of film, television and the Broadway stage. Her award-winning work includes creating the role of Deena Jones in the legendary Broadway musical, “Dreamgirls,” which earned her Best Actress nods for Tony and Drama Desk Awards. She returned to Broadway for a 12-month stint in the Tony-award winning musical, “Thoroughly Modern Millie,’ creating the role of sassy chanteuse Muzzy Van Hossmere to rave reviews. Ralph has just wrapped the Broadway bound production of “The First Wives Club” musical at The Old Globe in San Diego, where she brought new life and new attitude to the role of Elyse Elliot, originally played by Goldie Hawn in the movie.
No stranger to television, Ralph’s credits include “It’s a Living,” “Designing Women,” “The District,” and most notably, “Moesha” for which TV Guide named her one of TV’s best Mom’s and was nominated for seven Image Awards. Sheryl has shared the big screen with some of Hollywood’s award-winning leading men with film credits that include “The Mighty Quinn” with Denzel Washington; “Mistress” with Robert de Niro; “The Distinguished Gentlemen” with Eddie Murphy and “To Sleep With Anger” with Danny Glover for which Ralph picked up a win for Best Supporting Actress at the Independent Spirit Awards for her critically acclaimed performance.
Finding success in writing and directing, Ralph’s award-winning short film, “Secrets,” co-starring award-winning actress Alfre Woodard and Robin Givens was a finalist in the HBO Film Short Competition, Showtime’s Filmmaker Award Series, and the BET Filmmaker Award Competition. The film was also selected as the audience favorite at the Outfest Film Festival. “Secrets” was screened at the Toronto International Film Festival, as well as the Hollywood Film Festival, the Acapulco Film Festival and the Urban World Film Festival.
Did you know?
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) estimate that about 250,000 of the 1.2 million people living with HIV don’t know they are infected. Get tested! Visit www.testtogether.org and www.divassimplysinging.org
“AIDS affects us all. Get tested!” Sheryl Lee Ralph