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Annual Benefit Concert Raises $86,000 for Santa Monica, Malibu Schools


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By Lookout Staff

March, 16, 2018 -- The Santa Monica-Malibu Education Foundation’s annual benefit concert this month starring Grammy winner and early 1980s rock star Rick Springfield raised more than $86,000 for local public schools, Foundation officials said Friday.

The 13th annual concert -- held at Santa Monica High School’s Barnum Hall March 10 -- also featured performances by Terri Nunn, lead vocalist for the 1980s new wave/synthpop band Berlin, and local vocal group VENICE, a staple of district benefit concerts.

Rick Springfield performs at Education Foundation's benefit concert

They were joined onstage by students from the District's award-winning music program.

“It was truly an unforgettable evening,” said Linda Greenberg, the Education Foundation's executive director. “Every year at this show, the students are playing with rock stars for the first time and the stars have the unique opportunity to perform with a full choir, orchestra and horn section.

"The energy on stage is electric," Greenberg said.

Rick Springfield (right) performs at Education Foundation's benefit concert (Courtesy of Education Foundation)

Students also took an active role in producing the show, helping professional technicians backstage with AV and lighting and serving as ushers.

This year's concert poster was also designed by a student -- Hunter Pearson from Malibu High School.

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Emmy award-winning journalist Mark Steines, host of Hallmark Channel's "Home & Family," and longtime Los Angeles radio personality Cynthia Fox emceed the evening.

The concert also featured a live auction of signed Fender guitars, the DW Drums kit from the stage, a case of concert-branded Syrah, tickets to the “The Voice” and a vacation in Cabo San Lucas.

Proceeds from the concert -- renamed the Greg Coote Concert For The Arts last year -- will support arts programs at all District schools next year, Foundation officials said.

Last year's inaugural Greg Coote Concert For The Arts raised more than $88,000 ("Concert for the Arts Raises More than $88,000 for Santa Monica - Malibu District Schools," March 21, 2017).

It featured five-time Grammy winner Michael McDonald, formerly of the Doobie Brothers and Steely Dan, and four-time Grammy winner “Weird Al” Yankovic.


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