Rock icon Carlos Santana and the eccentric musical trio, Blue Man Group headlined a sold out opening show at the Hollywood Bowl June 24, kicking off its summer concert series.
Other performances included actor John C. Reilly who sang a song from the newly released “Unexpected Dreams” CD. The album is a compilation with several other celebrity guest performances.
Once the stage became dark, three blue-faced figures stood illuminate over two oil drums. One blue man began to beat on the drums while the other two squirted paint inside the drum. Several spurts of brightly colored paint could be seen shooting into the air.
The Blue Man Group performed three different acts, one of which was a duet with the Los Angeles Philharmonic titled “Concerto for PVC Pipe and Orchestra, Opus 4.” This was the blue trio’s first Hollywood Bowl appearance. The crowd welcomed the group with cheers throughout their act.
World-renowned pianist Andre Watts and Santana also were inducted into the Hollywood Bowl’s Hall of Fame.
Watts, who at the age of 26 was the youngest person to receive an honorary doctorate from Yale, effortlessly performed Rachmaninoff’s Piano Concerto No.2. The crowd stood up and gave him a standing ovation.
Before Santana performance, Edward James Olmos, actor, expressed heartfelt sentiments about him.
“It is with love and respect that I say the word Santana,” he said.
Olmos described the unique fusion of Santana’s music of african/blues/rock/latin as something few artists combined when he first emerged into the music industry.
He played his first song with classically trained vocalist Jubilant Sykes, who incorporates gospel and jazz into his singing style.
“It is my highest wish that music will demonstrate to the people at the White House that harmony and unity without dropping bombs can exist,” Santana said.
The statement summed up the mood of Santana’s performance.
Mauceri said fireworks were the only thing that could follow someone like Santana.
The sky was illuminated with all the colors of the rainbow as the crowd cheered.
The event’s proceeds went to benefit the Los Angeles Philharmonic’s music education program, Music Matters.
Several awards were also given out, including the 2006 Inspire the Future Project that awarded three schools $2500 grants to go towards their music education programs. Downey High School was awarded $11,000 in musical equipment and a $2,500 grant to Cory Olariu, music director. The Downey High School band performed swing style pieces on stage that sounded professional and impressive.
A group of CSUN students and Associated Students Student Production and Campus Entertainment members also attended the event.
S.P.A.C.E. organized a night at the Hollywood Bowl that was free to students.
“Did we all have a good time?” Kellvon Smith, S.P.A.C.E. director of homecoming and spirit, asked bus riders.
The students responded in cheers.