In addition to Grammy-Award®-Winning artist Michael Bolton and his band, attendees at the 20th Annual Michael Bolton Charities (MBC) Dinner and Benefit concert Nov. 10 will also enjoy a star-studded evening led by mistress of ceremonies Joan Lunden. Lunden, celebrated journalist and former host of “Good Morning America,” welcomes to the stage musicians Dave Mason and Bill Champlin, formerly of the band Chicago, as well as comedienne and sitcom writer Carol Leifer and magician-comedian Chipper Lowell. Other celebrities scheduled to attend include Lisa Niemi Swayze, actress, dancer and wife of the late Patrick Swayze; Academy Award-winning composer and musician Paul Williams; comedian and country music singer Gary Mule Deer; and actor Tom Hallick. Nevada Attorney General Catherine Cortez Masto also acts as Honorary Chair of this year’s event. Masto is well known throughout the state for her work on missing and exploited children, a cause that is near and dear to the heart of the MBC.
The MBC 20th anniversary Charity Benefit and Concert celebrates two decades of The MBC’s assistance to children and women at risk and as a result, has chosen northern Nevada as a base to launch its national effort to create awareness and education for issues affecting children and women at risk. In keeping with this mission, The MBC has selected two prominent local non-profit agencies to benefit from the event: The Boys & Girls Club of Truckee Meadows and the Nevada Military Support Alliance (NMSA). In addition, Work Vessels for Veterans and Yoga Blue also receive grants from the celebration’s successes.
Local residents and humanitarians Warren and Jâlé Trepp, along with William J. McNamee of Citi, also are set to receive the MBC “Lifetime Achievement” Award during the evening’s program. The Trepps, are known for their longstanding commitment to giving back to the local community and organizations across the country while McNamee is being recognized for his unparalleled efforts as a board member of The MBC.
Leading off the evening’s entertainment is Carol Leifer. A veteran stand-up comic first discovered by David Letterman in the 1980’s, Leifer has performed her routine at venues across the country, produced three comedy specials, and has written for television shows including “Saturday Night Live,” “Seinfeld” and “The Larry Sanders Show.” In the 1990’s, Leifer was dubbed “The Real Elaine,” referring to the “Seinfeld” character of the same name which was based loosely on her life.
The Dave Mason Band takes the stage at the 20th anniversary MBC Benefit Dinner and Concert to the delight of classic rock fans. Mason, currently fronting the aptly named Dave Mason Band, is an English singer-songwriter and guitarist who began his career with the rock band, Traffic, in 1967. After decades of recording with the likes of Jimi Hendrix, the Rolling Stones, Michael Jackson, Eric Clapton, George Harrison, Paul McCartney, Fleetwood Mac and “Mama” Cass Elliot, Mason was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 2004. He is best known for the hits “Feelin’ Alright” and “We Just Disagree.”
Following Mason is former Chicago keyboardist, guitarist and singer Bill Champlin joining Michael Bolton’s band for a brief set. Champlin, originally of the San Francisco-based rock band, Sons of Champlin, who often played with the likes of the Grateful Dead, Jefferson Airplane, and Country Joe and the Fish, has claimed numerous Grammy Awards throughout his career.
In between sets and before Michael Bolton returns to the stage to close out the evening’s events, magician-comedian Chipper Lowell entertains the audience. Lowell is an Award-winning visual and variety magician, comedian, writer and producer who has appeared on “The Tonight Show,” “America’s Funniest People,” and the “Jerry Lewis MDA Telethon,” among many other shows. Regularly appearing in films and in casino showrooms in Las Vegas, Reno, Lake Tahoe and Atlantic City, Lowell is a two-time recipient of the Merlin Award for “Comedy Magician of the Year” from the International Magicians Society and was also named “Specialty Act of the Year” by South Lake Tahoe’s “Tahoe Daily Tribune” and Action Magazine. MAGIC Magazine voted him one of the “Top Funniest Magicians Performing Today” and in 2006, he was listed among the “Top Three Stage Magicians” by the “Sacramento Bee,” alongside Lily Tomlin and Lewis Black.
Other special guests at the Nov. 10th event include Academy Award-winning composer, musician and actor Paul Williams. Williams is best known for hits such as Three Dog Night’s “An Old Fashioned Love Song,” the Carpenters’ “We’ve Only Just Begun” and “Rainy Days and Mondays,” and his acclaimed contribution to “The Muppet Movie,” the song “Rainbow Connection.”
Acclaimed dancer, actress, author, choreographer and producer Lisa Niemi Swayze, wife of the late Patrick Swayze, also attends the evening’s festivities. Most recently, Niemi completed the best-selling book “The Time of My Life,” co-written with her late husband and released just after his passing in 2009.
Also set to appear is actor Tom Hallick who has appeared in more than 100 plays and, for five years, fulfilled the key role of Brad Elliot on “The Young and the Restless” (“Y&R”). After “Y&R,” Hallick went on to create and play the role of Maxwell Hathaway on “Days of Our Lives” before becoming one of the first hosts of “Entertainment Tonight.”
Comedian and country musician Gary Mule Deer also attends as a friend of the MBC. With more than 350 television performances, Mule Deer has performed on every major stage in the United States including performances with Frank Sinatra, Willie Nelson, the Doobie Brothers, Sly and the Family Stone, The Guess Who and Boz Skaggs.
The event takes place Saturday, Nov. 10. Cocktails begin at 5 p.m. and are followed by dinner and performances. Tickets start at $250 and can be purchased by visiting www.MichaelBoltonCharities.com or calling 203-483-6463.
Co-Chairs for the event are: Chip Bowlby, Christina Caramella and Nanci Glogauer. This year’s event is sponsored by Eldorado Hotel Casino, Citi, BMI, Inc., Kenny G & Company, Digital Check Corp., Make My Day Beautiful, The Butler Family, David Hardie-Chair Parasol Tahoe Community Foundation, Madylon and Dean Meiling, Nanci and Len Glogauer, and Jennifer Patterson.