Local bands and Las Vegas headliners will share the stage at
Christmas Hill Park for the South County Reaches Out: Live Aid
Benefit Concert for American Red Cross Hurricane Relief.
Gilroy – Local bands and Las Vegas headliners will share the stage at Christmas Hill Park for the South County Reaches Out: Live Aid Benefit Concert for American Red Cross Hurricane Relief.
Stephen Sorrentino, a musical comedian and impersonator who has been headlining at the Riviera Hotel in Las Vegas, will be flown in to emcee the show. He will be joined by a variety of celebrity impersonators, including the Blues Brothers, Marilyn Monroe, Gwen Stefani and local Elvis look-alike Johnny Baron.
“I would venture to say this particular event will have more talent on one stage than the greater Bay Area has seen for a while,” said Linda Collins, owner of Classique Productions in Las Vegas, the talent producer for the concert.
All of the performers, including local rock ‘n’ roll acts Daddy-O and Shaboom, have donated their time and talent to the fundraiser. Other bands include California Beach Party and The Woogie Men.
“No one is getting a dime,” Collins said. “Every single performer, including my agency, will donate their services.”
Hollie Vest, a Tina Turner impersonator, will be performing even though she suffered a loss in the hurricane. Her bed-and-breakfast was destroyed in the storm.
“She is donating her services to help raise money for all the victims,” Collins said. “Including her associates and friends in New Orleans.”
The five-hour event will take place between 1 and 6pm Saturday, Oct. 22 and will be hosted by the Gilroy Dispatch, the Morgan Hill Times, the Hollister Free Lance, the Sunday Pinnacle and Saint Louise Regional Hospital.
“We were wondering what contribution we could make to the Red Cross Hurricane relief,” said Steve Staloch, publisher of the Gilroy Dispatch, the Hollister Free Lance and the Morgan Hill Times. “Very good things are being done by a lot of private or religious organizations. This is one more venue to help those in need.”
The benefit concert came out of a brainstorm between Staloch and Ted Fox, the CEO of Saint Louise Regional Hospital. The two met with Vivian Smith, director of marketing at Saint Louise and Kelly Dobson, the marketing director for Mainstreet Media Group, parent company of The Dispatch.
“It will be a really fun day for families,” said Dobson. “There will be face painters, magicians and performances for kids.”
Southwest Airlines has donated airfare for some of the out-of-town performers. The Forest Park Inn offered free accommodations for two nights to the entertainers and the production crew.
“The amount of generosity from other organizations was remarkable,” Staloch said. The group received support from the Morgan Hill and Gilroy Chambers of Commerce, and Katherine Filice, the owner of Articulate Solutions.
The City of Gilroy is donating the use of Christmas Hill Park for the event.
“It’s fascinating that we’ve been able to put this together in such a short time,” Staloch said. “Everyone’s been remarkable.”
Talent producer Collins is continuing to confirm performers and bands for the show, and the details of the food booths have not yet been confirmed. Ticket information will be available soon. Adult admission will be $10 and children younger than 10 will be $5.