David Foster joined by Oprah Winfrey for his David Foster Foundation charity gala

David Foster Foundation 2017 gala

 

 

 

 

 

 

David Foster Foundation 2017 event: 30th foundation gala

They do not call it Hollywood North for nothing.

The starred guest list for the 30th Anniversary Gala and Concerto Miracle by David Foster continues to grow with the celebrities Oprah, Steve Tyler of Aerosmith and actress Goldie Hawn have confirmed to visit Vancouver later this month.

The Foundation’s David Foster Foundation’s annual event raises funds to support families who often have to travel to other cities so that their children can experience rescue organ transplants. The foundation has helped more than 1,100 Canadian families cover non-medical expenses, such as traveling to cities where pediatric facilities are located, mortgages or rental payments, car payments, and more.

This year’s event will also have Dr. Phil, Jay Leno, Bo Derek, Carly Rae Jepsen of B.C. and The Tenors. Concert performers include Tyler, Robin Thicke, The Tenors, Matteo Bocelli and Laura Bretan.

Tickets for the event start at $ 49 and are available online at davidfostermiracleconcert.com. See the full list of celebrity guests below.

• Oprah Winfrey
• Steven Tyler
• Goldie Hawn
• Dr. Phil McGraw
• Jay Leno
• Bo Derek
• Carly Rae Jepsen
• The Tenors
• Matteo Bocelli
• Laura Bretan
• Terry David Mulligan
• Russ & Paris Courtnall
• Geoff Courtnall
• Michaela Pereira
• Jim Treliving
• Trevor Linden
• Andre Agassi
• Steffi Graf
• Melissa Peterman
• Rick Hansen
• Erin Foster
• Sara Foster
• Tommy Haas
• Ben Mulroney
• Brian and Mila Mulroney
• Ruben Studdard
• Pia Toscano
• Shelea Frazier
• Caroline Campbell
• William Joseph

Since it was founded in Victoria in 1986, David Foster has supported the non-medical expenses of over 1,100 Canadian families, such as food, mortgage or rent, and flights.

“For the past three decades, the David Foster Foundation has worked hard to raise the awareness of this cause and educate the public on the importance of becoming a registered organ donor,” said Michael Ravenhill, CEO of the David Foster Foundation.

 

An intimate evening with David Foster

An intimate evening with David Foster
MICHAEL D. REID / TIMES COLONIST
MAY 6, 2013

Piers Morgan wasn’t at the Oak Bay Beach Hotel Saturday night, but you could say he was there in spirit, says David Foster.

The colourful British CNN talk show host’s reputation as a fly-by-the-seat-of-your-pants personality inadvertently inspired Foster to be able to pull off his impromptu David Foster Foundation fundraiser, his Victoria-born friend said.

“I just thought of Piers and how impressed I am with how he can do those interviews on the fly,” said Foster, whose ritzy black-tie dinner and concert that also opened the David Foster Foundation Theatre brought to $284,000 the amount raised for the foundation by the hotel since its $52-million makeover.

Owners Kevin and Shawna Walker have pledged $2 million over 10 years.

The Grammy Award-winning musician hastily enlisted Fernando Varela, the Puerto Rican tenor he discovered on YouTube; classical crossover sensation William Joseph; and Los Angeles singer and longtime collaborator Nita Whitaker for the loosest concert yet in the 26-year history of the foundation that assists families with children who need organ transplants.

The anything-goes “intimate evening” was full of surprises as Foster, 63, breezed along on a wing and The Prayer, his pop-opera hit sung by Whitaker and Varela, whose high notes almost shattered wine glasses.

After Foster predicted he had Pavarotti potential, Varela thanked him for his support.

“Yeah, five years from now when I call him it’ll be like, ‘How’d you get this number?’ ” Foster joked.

Georgia Murray, the Victoria-based singer there with father Craig, owner of Nimmo Bay Resort, was cajoled onstage to deliver an impassioned take on Summertime.

“You’re a lot hotter than your brother,” Foster quipped, referring to The Tenors’ Clifton Murray.

“And he wears more makeup than me!” she replied.

Offstage, Murray recalled Kevin Walker gave her her first job when she was 18, singing on the hotel’s dinner cruises.

She also recalled her childhood at Nimmo Bay, where dad played guitar and she and Clifton sang for guests, adding with a laugh: “I learned The Little Mermaid when I was five and, unannounced to my parents, I sang it for the guests.”

Guest services attendant Daniela Jackson got her 15 minutes of fame, wowing guests with Bonnie Raitt’s Something to Talk About. Walker has been singing her praises since hearing Jackson sing Happy Birthday to guests.

Kathleen Burton, Victoria Hospice director of development, also got an ovation after singing Don’t Cry for Me, Argentina.

Other highlights included Whitaker’s soaring versions of It’s Got to Be Real and I Will Always Love You; Varela’s rendition of Puccini’s Nessun Dorma; and Phoenix-based Joseph’s wizardry on the grand piano starting with Led Zeppelin’s Cashmere.

“The best way to describe my music is that it sounds like soundtracks to films that haven’t been written,” said the genial musician who has performed here four times since Foster discovered him 10 years ago.

This visit was more relaxing than his last, he said.

“We drove to the wrong side of the Island the day of the show, three hours in the wrong direction,” he recalled.

Foster was relaxed and self-deprecating, even acknowledging his blunders.

“If you do that song, it’ll ruin your career,” he said, recalling his reaction when Celine Dion said she wanted to do My Heart Will Go On.

“I hated that song then, and I still hate that song,” deadpanned Foster, whose musical flashback included passages from Chicago’s Hard to Say I’m Sorry and You’re the Inspiration; the Earth Wind and Fire hit After the Love Is Gone; and Wildflower, the 1970s Skylark hit he wrote with David Richardson, the retired Saanich cop who used his proceeds to feed the homeless in Israel.

Foster also elicited laughter recalling his years playing at the old Century Inn and Red Lion.

“I couldn’t play in the bar because I was only 16, so they cut a hole in the wall and I played on a platform beside the bar on the restaurant side.”

Foster didn’t even mind being overshadowed by his wife Yolanda Foster, one of the stars of the reality TV show Real Housewives of Beverly Hills.

“I’m just a girl from Holland,” she said, smiling. “I’m not really from Beverly Hills. I just try to fit in.”

mreid@timescolonist.com

© Copyright 2013

Interview: David speaking about William Joseph

 

William Joseph

 

From VancouverSun.com:

BY CHANTAL EUSTACE, VANCOUVER SUN

William Joseph knew that a chance to tickle the ivories for Canadian hit-maker David Foster was a big deal.

It turned out to be a life-changing opportunity.

Foster was so impressed by Joseph’s talent during that encounter five years ago, he asked the former piano teacher to perform in his place that very night at a charity concert.

“A standing ovation later, I was invited out to David’s house in Malibu and then he said, ‘I want to sign you to Warner Brothers,’ ” Joseph says, speaking by phone from his home in Phoenix. “So right after that, I went on tour with Josh Groban.”

Today, the so-called “classical pop” pianist is headlining his own tour, hot off the heels of his second album, Beyond.

He’s being asked to write music for the likes of Celine Dion, and his sweeping music — it blends rock elements with soundtrack-worthy anthems — is attracting more and more fans.

Foster, credited with discovering talent like Groban and Michael Buble, saw something in Joseph right away.

Or, as the music legend puts it, a new “slot” or niche to fill.

“Way back, long before your time, there used to be piano players that were instrumentalists that had hit records back in the ’60s and ’70s,” Foster says.

“And that’s what I think, potentially, William could fill that slot of just being a piano player that makes hit instrumental music.

“There hasn’t been a hit instrumental in a long time. There used to be one every month.”

It’s hard to make modern comparisons to Joseph, though.

“I was kind of going for a Josh Groban without the vocals kind of approach,” says Foster, speaking by phone from his recording studio in Santa Monica, busy working with Buble on his next album.

But it’s tough to build an audience for an artist within a unique genre — especially for an artist who doesn’t sing.

“[Joseph] has got to get out there and keep touring and get the word out because radio isn’t going to spread the word for him and it’s hard to get him on television because he doesn’t sing,” says Foster.

But Joseph is a great live performer, he says. A must-see, according to Foster’s expert assessment.

“When you go see him, it’s so entertaining,” says Foster, describing the experience as emotional.

“He takes you on a real journey and you get right into his world for 90 minutes. It’s awesome.”

Joseph, who began playing piano at age four, is equally effusive about Foster. He says he’s learned a lot by working with the multiple-Grammy winning producer, songwriter and musician.

Foster taught him about the importance of a strong melody, he says, adding this is reflected in the music on Beyond, which Foster also produced.

“It sounds like a movie score to a film that hasn’t been written,” Joseph says.

As for Foster, he says he loves to promote new talent like Joseph.

“To me, any time I can be part of some kind of new discovery of any kind of new talent — whether it’s a singer or an instrumentalist — I think it just makes me look better,” says Foster.

He’s modest about his success finding new talent.

“All I’m trying to do is figure out what people like,” he says, adding that what he likes seems to appeal to many people.

“I think I just have a common ear.”

 

Video: William Joseph at Iowa Public Television

 

William Joseph

 

Terri Hale interviews pianist William Joseph, a David Foster prodigy, at Iowa Public Television during Festival 2009.

Part 1:

Part 2:

Part 3:

“Sweet Remembrance of You”:

“A Mother’s Heart”:

“Within”:

“Piano Fantasy”:

David to direct Celebrity Fight Night XV

 

Celebrity Fight Night

 

Recognized as one of the nation’s elite charity events, Celebrity Fight Night is a star-studded evening presented in honor of featured guest, Muhammad Ali. Celebrities and professional athletes from all over the country participate in a night filled with incredible Live Auction items and live musical performances by many of today’s brightest stars.

David Foster is once again the music director.

The 2009 Celebrity Fight Night will be held on March 28th at the JW Marriott Desert Ridge Resort in Phoenix.
Reba McEntire will return for her 4th consecutive appearance as the evening’s emcee of the event. Jon Bon Jovi, Roy Firestone, Charice, Michael Johns, Lucia Micarelli, William Joseph and Ethan Bortnick will all be performing at the event. Michael Phelps, Stewart Rahr and Kurt Warner will be honored as leaders in the sports and business communities and accept the Muhammad Ali Award.