BET Awards Return Sunday Night, Celebrating 50 Years of Hip


HomeHome / News / BET Awards Return Sunday Night, Celebrating 50 Years of Hip

Aug 12, 2023

BET Awards Return Sunday Night, Celebrating 50 Years of Hip

The BET Awards return Sunday night, with a performance-filled show that promises to celebrate 50 years of hip-hop. The show, which takes place at the Microsoft Theater in Los Angeles, will feature a

The BET Awards return Sunday night, with a performance-filled show that promises to celebrate 50 years of hip-hop.

The show, which takes place at the Microsoft Theater in Los Angeles, will feature a tribute to hip-hop's most significant moments, as curated by Kid Capri. Patti Labelle will also pay tribute to the late Tina Turner, The Associated Press said.

The show begins at 8 p.m. EDT and will be broadcast on BET, BET HER and numerous Paramount channels including Comedy Central, MTV, Nickelodeon and VH1. It was also livestream on

Drake leads the nominations, with seven: He’s up for best male hip-hop artist and male R&B/pop artist, as well as a few shared titles, including best collaboration and viewer’s choice with Future and Tems for their song “Wait for U." Drake is also nominated for album of the year and best group for his collaboration with 21 Savage, “Her Loss," and viewer’s choice for their hit “Jimmy Cooks.”

Lizzo and 21 Savage are tied for the second-most noms, with five each.

Busta Rhymes will take home the Lifetime Achievement Award — one of the highest honors at the ceremony, given to Sean “Diddy” Combs at last year's ceremony. The 12-time Grammy Award nominated rapper, producer, and pioneering hip-hop figure is widely regarded as one of the great MCs, with seven Top 10 Billboard Hot 100 hits to his name.

Bia, Coi Leray, Cutty Ranks, Dexta Daps, M.O.P., Rah Digga, ScarLip, Spice, Supercat, and Swizz Beatz are scheduled to pay tribute to Rhymes.

It’s one of several moments that will honor the legacy of hip-hop, which BET has supported for decades through shows like “Rap City” and “106 & Park.”

Other performers at the 2023 BET Awards include Chief Keef, DJ Unk, E-40, Fast Life Yungstaz & Easton (F.L.Y.), Fat Joe, Soulja Boy, The Sugarhill Gang, Tyga, Ying Yang Twins and Yo-Yo.

Romayne Wheeler sits at his grand piano overlooking Mexico's Copper Canyon and plays music inspired by the mountains and remote Indigenous communities that he now dedicates his life to helping.

The 81-year-old California-born composer no longer lives in the cave where he slept with his solar-powered portable piano after arriving several decades ago in the Sierra Tarahumara in northwestern Mexico.

But he feels as close as ever to nature and Indigenous Raramuri people who welcomed him into their lives, sharing their food, music, and culture, said AFP.

"I feel truly that all of this area around me is my studio," Wheeler told AFP in his stone house perched on the canyon's edge, several hours from the nearest significant town along winding mountain tracks.

"Every tree, every plant, every flower -- everything here has something to tell me," he said.

Wheeler's love affair with the Sierra Tarahumara began in 1980 when he was in the United States studying Indigenous music and a snowstorm made it impossible to travel to a Native American reservation near the Grand Canyon.

Leafing through a copy of National Geographic magazine, he came across pictures of the remote Mexican region and decided to see it for himself."It was like coming home," he recalled, wearing the Indigenous-style shirt and traditional sandals that he now prefers to Western attire.

"The people that are most revered here are the musicians. They stand in high honor like the shamans," he said.

The mountainous corner of Chihuahua state is part of the notorious "Golden Triangle," a region with a history of marijuana and opium poppy production as well as drug cartel violence.

Raramuri philosophyWheeler identified so much with the philosophy of the Raramuri -- also known as Tarahumara -- that he came back for several weeks each year before settling there permanently in 1992.

They were "people who shared everything they had, who considered the person that is of most value is the one that helps others the most, and contributed something positive to humanity," he said.

When he first arrived, the Raramuri -- whose name means "light-footed ones" and who are renowned for their running stamina -- showed Wheeler a small cave where he could practice and keep his electric piano dry.

"My friends said sometimes with the wind just right they could hear my little tiny instrument all the way across the canyon," he remembered.

One young child, a neighbor's son, showed particular interest, so Wheeler taught him to play and sent him to study in the Chihuahua state capital.

Now Romeyno Gutierrez, his protege, is an acclaimed pianist in his own right who performs abroad and accompanied Wheeler on two tours of Europe.

"He's the first pianist and composer of Indian heritage that I know of on our continent," Wheeler said proudly.

Bringing his 1917 Steinway grand piano to the village of Retosachi was almost as much of an odyssey as Wheeler's own.

The dream to put a piano on a mountaintop was born in Austria where Wheeler, a keen mountaineer, studied and lived for 32 years, but where harsh winters made it impossible.

In Mexico, he hired a professional moving company to bring the fragile musical instrument from the western city of Guadalajara as far as it could into the mountains.

It then took 28 hours to reach Wheeler's home by truck along dirt mountain roads with the piano laid on its side, supported by piles of potatoes, he said.

"We went at a walking rhythm for most of the way because of all the potholes," he added.

Helping humanityDespite the remoteness of his home, affectionately named Eagle's Nest, visits from his neighbors and the company of his dogs mean that Wheeler never feels alone.

"I feel more lonely in the city because of all the people around that have nothing to say to each other," he said.

He has 42 godsons in the area, one of the poorest in Mexico, where limited access to clean water, sufficient food, and healthcare pose major challenges to communities that rely mostly on subsistence agriculture.

In the early 1990s, Wheeler decided to use proceeds from the concerts he performs around the world to establish a school, a clinic, and a scholarship program.

"They're very good people. They help a lot," said one of his neighbors, Gerardo Gutierrez, who was a child when he first met Wheeler.

"They gave away blankets when it was very cold. And sometimes they got groceries for the people here," the 49-year-old added.

Giving back to the community has also given Wheeler a deeper sense of purpose.

"These years have been the most happy years of my life really because I feel like my music is doing something of value to help humanity," he said.

Cardi B will not face criminal charges over an incident in which she threw her microphone at a member of her audience, police in Las Vegas said Thursday.

Detectives launched a battery probe into the "WAP" star's actions after she retaliated when a concert-goer chucked a liquid at her.

Footage posted on social media shows the "Money" singer recoiling after someone close to the stage splashed the contents of a cup in her direction.

In the clips, Cardi B can be seen pausing briefly, before flinging the microphone back in the same direction.

However, some videos online appear to show the mic making contact with a different member of the audience.

Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department said Monday that a woman had contacted them to report a battery, and that they had begun an investigation.

But on Thursday, they confirmed that the probe had been dropped.

"After a thorough review of this case and with the consultation from the Clark County District Attorney´s Office, this case has been closed as having insufficient evidence," a statement said.

"No charges will be filed in relation to this case."

Meanwhile, a listing on bidding site eBay for a microphone purported to be at the center of the drama had reached $99,900 by Thursday afternoon.

TMZ reported the seller, Scott Fisher, works for a company that provides audio kit for Las Vegas clubs.

The entertainment outlet reported Fisher as saying the proceeds from the sale, which ends Tuesday, would be split between two charities -- the Wounded Warrior Project and Friendship Circle Las Vegas, which helps teens and young adults with special needs.

The mic-hurl episode was the latest involving performers being the target of objects from the audience.

In June a man threw a phone at Bebe Rexha during a concert in New York, landing the singer in hospital.

The same month an audience member threw a bag purportedly containing the ashes of their mother at the stage while singer Pink was performing in London.

And last year Harry Styles good-naturedly paused a New York concert after someone threw a chicken nugget in his direction.

In December, Guns N' Roses frontman Axl Rose pledged to stop throwing his microphone into the audience at the end of a show after a fan was reportedly hurt in Australia.

Chairman of the Board of Directors of General Entertainment Authority Advisor Turki Al AL-Sheikh launched on Thursday the new identity of the Saudi 93rd National Day, which is celebrated on September 23, "We dream and achieve."

National Day 93 identity was inspired by the Saudi ambitions, which have grown closer to reality and are represented through the massive projects the Kingdom promised in Vision 2030. As a result, Saudi Arabia's influence and position as a crucial and necessary participant at all levels of local and global economic output has grown.

The logo inspiration is like a dreamer painter's brush, drawing the borders of Saudi Arabia to embrace the dream with determination and persistence. Dreams are written to be established in the minds, as this is how dreamers plan their goals with confident steps to achieve them. The logo's colors are inspired by the nation's green color, the nature of the Kingdom's land.

Lizzo has been sued by three former dancers who accuse the Grammy winner of sexual harassment and allege the singer and her production company created a hostile work environment.

The civil lawsuit filed Tuesday in Los Angeles County Superior Court claims Lizzo pressured the dancers to engage with nude performers at a club in Amsterdam and shamed one of them for her weight gain before firing her.

Plaintiffs Arianna Davis, Crystal Williams and Noelle Rodriguez make numerous charges including sexual, religious and racial harassment, disability discrimination, assault and false imprisonment.

The legal complaint seeks unspecified damages and names Melissa Viviane Jefferson, known professionally as Lizzo, her production company Big Grrrl Big Touring, Inc., and Shirlene Quigley, captain of the performer’s dance team.

Representatives for Lizzo didn't immediately respond to emails seeking comment on the lawsuit.

The court filing claims that after performing a concert in Amsterdam, Lizzo and her crew attended a sexually themed show at a club in the city's notorious Red Light District where “Lizzo began inviting cast members to take turns touching the nude performers.” During the show, Lizzo led a chant pressuring Davis to touch a nude women performing at the club, the filing states.

“Finally, the chorus became overwhelming, and a mortified Ms. Davis acquiesced in an attempt to bring an end to the chants,” the complaint states. “Plaintiffs were aghast with how little regard Lizzo showed for the bodily autonomy of her employees and those around her, especially in the presence of many people whom she employed.”

Lizzo, who routinely champions body positivity, is also accused of calling out Davis for her weight gain after accusing the dancer of not being committed to her role. Davis was fired in May for recording a meeting during which Lizzo had given out notes to dancers about their performances, according to the complaint.

Quigley, who served as a judge on the singer's reality show “Lizzo's Watch Out for the Big Grrrls,” is accused in the lawsuit of pushing her Christian beliefs onto dancers. The court filing claims Quigley referred to Davis as a “non-believer" and told co-workers that “No job and no one will stop me from talking about the Lord.”

Earlier this year, Lizzo won the Grammy for record of the year for her hit “About Damn Time." A global tour supporting her fourth studio album, 2022's “Special,” wrapped up last month.

A Vermont driver accused of causing a crash that killed actor Treat Williams has been cited for grossly negligent operation causing death, officials said.

An investigation of the June 12 crash in Dorset concluded a vehicle pulled in front of Williams, who was riding a motorcycle and was unable to avoid a collision, Vermont State Police said Tuesday.

The driver who was cited, Ryan Koss, 35, of Dorset, was processed Tuesday evening and released ahead of a September arraignment, state police said. A court official couldn’t say whether Koss had a lawyer, and Koss didn’t immediately return an email message seeking comment.

Williams, 71, of Manchester Center, was pronounced dead at Albany Medical Center in New York.

Richard Treat Williams’ nearly 50-year career included starring roles in the TV series “Everwood” and the movie “Hair.” He appeared in more than 120 TV and film roles, including the movies “The Eagle Has Landed,” “Prince of the City” and “Once Upon a Time in America.”

Union leaders told striking Hollywood writers Tuesday night that they plan to meet with representatives for studios to discuss restarting negotiations after the first official communication between the two sides since the strike began three months ago.

The Writers Guild of America sent an email to members saying that the head of the Alliance of Motion Picture and Television Producers, which represents major studios, streaming services and production companies in negotiations, requested a meeting on Friday to discuss the resumption of contract talks.

“We’ll be back in communication with you sometime after the meeting with further information,” the email read. “As we’ve said before, be wary of rumors. Whenever there is important news to share, you will hear it directly from us.”

It was not immediately known whether a similar overture was made to union leaders for Hollywood actors, who have been on strike since July 14.

Asked about the prospect of talks with either guild, a spokesperson for the AMPTP in an email said only that “We remain committed to finding a path to mutually beneficial deals with both Unions.”

An email to a representative from the Screen Actors Guild–American Federation of Television and Radio Artists, which represents striking film and television actors, was not immediately returned.

Talks between screenwriters and their employers collapsed on May 1, and the first of the two strikes that have frozen production in Hollywood began a day later. Issues behind the strike include pay rates amid inflation, the use of smaller writing staffs for shorter seasons of television shows, and control over artificial intelligence in the screenwriting process.

“I had hoped that we would already have had some kind of conversations with the industry by now,” SAG-AFTRA Executive Director Duncan Crabtree-Ireland told The Associated Press earlier Tuesday, before the email was sent to writers. “Obviously, that hasn’t happened yet, but I’m optimistic.”

There are some good gags and clever innovations in the animated "Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles: Mutant Mayhem," but there is one brilliant idea: casting Ice Cube as the voice of the movie's mutant insect supervillain Super Fly.

It might have once been hard to foresee the value of having the emcee who rapped of "dropping bombs on your moms" as the MVP of a PG-rated kids movie. But we're now up to the seventh "Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles" film, not counting all the series and videogames. That's a lot of movies for a bit of IP that's clung more firmly to lunch boxes than it has to pop culture. For the turtles, it was getting to be time to either, as Ice Cube would say, "chickity-check yo' self" or try something new.

"Mutant Mayhem," which opens in theaters Wednesday, can't entirely get over the feeling of trodding over well-covered turtle ground. But if we must go once more into the ooze, the film by director Jeff Rowe (co-director of "The Mitchells vs. the Machines") and co-written by co-producers Seth Rogen and Evan Goldberg, is probably the best of a not-so-stellar franchise. It's certainly the one most invested with that "teenage" part of the turtles' name. Plus, it's got Ice Cube as a fly who quotes from the O'Jays.

The animation is vividly textured, the beat is persistently hip-hop (Lauryn Hill, De La Soul, Ol’ Dirty Bastard and others pack the electronic score by Trent Reznor and Atticus Ross) and the New York of the film is impressively detailed. But the most important twist to this "Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles" iteration may be diving into the teenage-ness of its 15-year-old turtles.

If "Barbie" was balanced between Greta Gerwig's childhood memories and her adult feminism, "Mutant Mayhem" gives itself over more fully to the mindset of adolescence. That's in the gross-out humor and the comic book-like feel of the animation. But these are also recognizable teenagers who watch movies ("Ferris Bueller's Day Off"), pine for concert tickets and make goofy phone videos of themselves slicing watermelons.

What Donatello (Micah Abbey), Michelangelo (Shamon Brown Jr.), Leonardo (Nicolas Cantu) and Raphael (Brady Noon) really want is to fit in and go to high school like other teens. They have been relegated to the sewer ever since Splinter, a rat voiced by Jackie Chan, happened upon them after they were exposed as hatchlings to the same ooze that spawned Super Fly — who himself was the product of experiments by scientist Baxter Stockman (Giancarlo Esposito, fated to dubious laboratories).

Splinter has much the same opinion of the majority of the rats in "Ratatouille": Humans can't be trusted. (Splinter's particular fear is that they will "milk" him.") So the turtles have grown up underground, a little like the homeschooled family of "The Wolfpack," while yearning for the wider world.

They find a hint of it with a high-school journalist named April O'Neil (Ayo Edebiri), who wants to document, and thus prove to humankind, their decency. At the same, the turtles meet the charismatic Super Fly (voiced with bombastic aplomb by Ice Cube) and his band of mutants. At first, they're fast-friends — "cousins," Super Fly says — but the turtles then start hearing of Super Fly's plans to turn all animals into mutants and eradicate the world of humans.

"Peoples, they got to go," chimes one mutant.

Some of the thunder of "Mutant Mayhem" has been stolen by "Into the Spider-Verse" and this year's "Across the Spider-Verse" — films that likewise upend the typical look of studio animation and do it with a pulsing soundtrack; but they did it more eclectically.

Yet this "Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles," while a half shell of those films, has its own low-key charms. It's goofier, grosser and mostly fun. The four turtles are never more than a hard-to-differentiate bale of overlapping dialogue of doubt and anxiety. But that first word in their name finally feels genuine. Seven films in, it's only right that Donatello, Michelangelo, Leonardo and Raphael should get a renaissance.

Angus Cloud, the actor who starred as the drug dealer Fezco “Fez” O’Neill on the HBO series “Euphoria,” has died. He was 25.

Cloud’s publicist, Cait Bailey, said Cloud died Monday at his family home in Oakland, California. No cause of death was given.

In a statement, Cloud’s family said goodbye to “an artist, a friend, a brother and a son.

“Last week he buried his father and intensely struggled with this loss,” the family said. “The only comfort we have is knowing Angus is now reunited with his dad, who was his best friend. Angus was open about his battle with mental health and we hope that his passing can be a reminder to others that they are not alone and should not fight this on their own in silence.”

“We hope the world remembers him for his humor, laughter and love for everyone,” his family added.

Cloud hadn’t acted before he was cast in “Euphoria.” He was walking down the street in New York when casting scout Eléonore Hendricks noticed him. Cloud was resistant at first, suspecting a scam. Then casting director Jennifer Venditti met with him and series creator Sam Levinson eventually made him a co-star in the series alongside Zendaya for its first two seasons.

To some, Cloud seemed so natural as Fez that they suspected he was identical to the character — a notion that Cloud pushed back against.

“It does bother me when people are like, ‘It must be so easy! You get to go in and be yourself.’ I’m like, ‘Why don’t you go and do that?’ It’s not that simple,” Cloud told Variety. “I brought a lot to the character. You can believe what you want. It ain’t got nothing to do with me.”

The part made Cloud the breakout star of one the buzziest shows on television. He had a supporting role in his first film, “The Line,” a college drama starring Alex Wolff and John Malkovich that premiered earlier this year at the Tribeca Festival. Cloud was recently cast to co-star in “Scream 6.” He’s also made cameos in music videos for Juice WRLD, Becky G and Karol G.

The third season of “Euphoria” hasn’t yet begun filming.

“There was no one quite like Angus,” Levinson said in a statement. “He was too special, too talented and way too young to leave us so soon. He also struggled, like many of us, with addiction and depression. I hope he knew how many hearts he touched. I loved him. I always will. Rest in peace and God Bless his family.”

HBO said in a statement that Cloud “was immensely talented and a beloved part of the HBO and ‘Euphoria’ family. We extend our deepest condolences to his friends and family during this difficult time.”

Paul Reubens, the actor and comedian whose Pee-wee Herman character — an overgrown child with a tight gray suit and an unforgettable laugh — became a 1980s pop cultural phenomenon, has died at 70.

Reubens, who’s character delighted fans in the film "Pee-wee’s Big Adventure" and on the TV series "Pee-wee’s Playhouse," died Sunday night after a six-year struggle with cancer that he kept private, his publicist said in a statement.

"Please accept my apology for not going public with what I’ve been facing the last six years," Reubens said in a statement released Monday with the announcement of his death. "I have always felt a huge amount of love and respect from my friends, fans and supporters. I have loved you all so much and enjoyed making art for you."

Created for the stage, Pee-wee with his white chunky loafers and red bow tie would become a cultural constant in both adult and children's entertainment for much of the 1980s, though an indecent exposure arrest in 1991 would send the character into entertainment exile for years.

The staccato giggle that punctuated every sentence, catch phrases like "I know you are but what am I" and a tabletop dance to the Champs' song "Tequila" in a biker bar in "Pee-wee's Big Adventure" were often imitated by fans, to the joy of some and the annoyance of others.

Reubens created Pee-wee when he was part of the Los Angeles improv group The Groundlings in the late 1970s. The live "Pee-wee Herman Show" debuted at a Los Angeles theater in 1981 and was a success with both kids during matinees and adults at a midnight show.

The show closely resembled the format the Saturday morning TV "Pee-wee's Playhouse" would follow years later, with Herman living in a wild and wacky home with a series of stock-character visitors, including one, Captain Karl, played by the late "Saturday Night Live" star Phil Hartman.

HBO would air the show as a special.

Reubens took Pee-wee to the big screen with 1985’s "Pee-wee’s Big Adventure," which takes the character outside for a nationwide escapade. The film, in which Pee-wee’s cherished bike is stolen, was said to be loosely based on Vittorio De Sica’s Italian neo-realist classic, "The Bicycle Thief." Directed by Tim Burton and co-written by Hartman, the movie was a success, grossing $40 million, and continued to spawn a cult following for its oddball whimsy.

A sequel followed three years later in the less well-received "Big Top Pee-wee," in which Pee-wee seeks to join a circus. Reubens’ character wouldn’t get another movie starring role until 2016’s Pee-wee’s Big Holiday," for Netflix. Judd Apatow produced Pee-wee’s big-screen revival.

His television series, "Pee-wee’s Playhouse," ran for five seasons, earned 22 Emmys and attracted not only children but adults to Saturday-morning TV.

Jimmy Kimmel posted on Instagram that "Paul Reubens was like no one else — a brilliant and original comedian who made kids and their parents laugh at the same time. He never forgot a birthday and shared his genuine delight for silliness with everyone he met."

Both silly and subversive and championing nonconformity, the Pee-wee universe was a trippy place, populated by things like a talking armchair and a friendly pterodactyl.

Director Guillermo del Toro tweeted Monday that Reubens was "one of the patron saints of all misfitted, weird, maladjusted, wonderful, miraculous oddities."

The act was a hit because it worked on multiple levels, even though Reubens insists that wasn’t the plan.

"It’s for kids," Reubens told The Associated Press in 2010. "People have tried to get me for years to go, ‘It wasn’t really for kids, right?’ Even the original show was for kids. I always censored myself to have it be kid-friendly.

"The whole thing has been just a gut feeling from the beginning," Reubens told the AP. "That’s all it ever is and I think always ever be. Much as people want me to dissect it and explain it, I can’t. One, I don’t know, and two, I don’t want to know, and three, I feel like I’ll hex myself if I know."

Reubens' career was derailed when he was arrested for indecent exposure in an adult movie theater in Sarasota, Florida, the city where he grew up. He was handed a small fine, but the damage was incalculable.

He became the frequent butt of late-night talk show jokes and the perception of Reubens immediately changed.

"The moment that I realized my name was going to be said in the same sentence as children and sex, that’s really intense," Reubens told NBC in 2004. "That’s something I knew from that very moment, whatever happens past that point, something’s out there in the air that is really bad."

Reubens said he got plenty of offers to work, but told the AP that most of them wanted to take "advantage of the luridness of my situation", and he didn't want to do them.

"It just changed," he said. "Everything changed."

He did take advantage of one chance to poke fun at his tarnished image. Just weeks after his arrest, he would open the MTV Video Music Awards, walking on to the stage alone and saying, "Heard any good jokes lately?" (Herman appearances on MTV had fueled Pee-wee’s popularity in the early 1980s.)

In 2001, Reubens was arrested and charged with misdemeanor possession of child pornography after police seized images from his computer and photography collection, but the allegation was reduced to an obscenity charge and he was given three years probation.

Born Paul Rubenfeld in Peekskill, New York, in 1952, the eldest of three kids, he grew up in Sarasota where his parents ran a lamp store and he put on comedy shows for neighbor kids.

After high school he sought to study acting. He spent a year at Boston University, and was then turned down by the Juilliard School and Carnegie-Mellon University. So he enrolled at the California Institute of the Arts. That would lead to appearances at local comedy clubs and theaters and joining the Groundlings.

"Paul’s contributions to comedy and entertainment have left a lasting impact on the world, and he will be greatly missed by all in the Groundlings community," the group said in a statement.

After the 1991 arrest, he would spend the decade playing primarily non-Pee-wee characters, including roles in Burton’s 1992 movie "Batman Returns," the "Buffy the Vampire Slayer" film and a guest-star run on the TV series "Murphy Brown."

He also appeared in the 1999 comedy film "Mystery Men" and Johnny Depp's 2001 drug-dealer drama "Blow."

Reubens — who never lost his boyish appearance even in his 60s, would slowly re-introduce Pee-wee, eventually doing a Broadway adaptation of "The Pee-wee Herman Show" in 2010, and the 2016 Netflix movie.

Reubens was beloved by his fellow comedians, and fans of Pee-wee spanned the culture.

"His surreal comedy and unrelenting kindness were a gift to us all," Conan O'Brien tweeted. "Damn, this hurts."

This year Whitney Houston would have turned 60, and a special celebration to raise money for a good cause is being planned for her birthday.

Houston's estate, Sony and Primary Wave Music will host the 2nd annual Whitney Houston Legacy of Love on Aug. 9, which will benefit the late singer's foundation aimed at helping young people.

Houston’s close friends BeBe Winans and Kim Burrell will perform at the gala at Atlanta's St. Regis Hotel, as will Whitney’s brother, Gary, who toured with her for three decades.

“When I turned 50, Whitney gave me two celebrations — one in Ireland and one in London. I always tell everyone now that one of them was for her,” says Pat Houston, Whitney Houston’s sister-in-law and the executor of her estate. Houston died in February 2012 at age 48. “This year is Whitney at 60 — we’re all looking forward to being a part of the power of love in that room.”

Houston found the Whitney Houston Foundation for Children in 1989 with the goal of empowering youth, providing resources to unhoused children, giving out college scholarships, and raising funds for charities like the Children’s Defense Fund and St. Jude Children’s Research.

A charity auction will raise money for the foundation, which is now called the Whitney E. Houston Legacy Foundation.

“We're going to auction off a beautiful lavender dress Dolly Parton wore when she sang ‘I Will Always Love You’ at Country Music Television's ‘100 Greatest Love Songs of Country Music’ special in 2004,” says Pat Houston. “This dress is particularly special because it's lavender, and lavender is Whitney's favorite color.”

The song, originally written by Parton, was recorded by Houston and became one of her great, everlasting hits. The Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) certified it diamond early last year, which means the track has sold and streamed 10 million equivalent units in the United States. It became her first diamond single, and made Houston the third woman to ever achieve diamond-status with both a single and an album, following Mariah Carey and Taylor Swift.

Clive Davis will serve as honorary chairman. Recording Academy President Harvey Mason jr. is scheduled to attend. Also expected are Gamma’s Larry Jackson and Whitney Houston’s musical director Rickey Minor.

“I always tell people, Whitney is the star,” Pat Houston said. “Everybody in that room is royalty, but she's loyalty — and she's still showing that.”

انشئ حساباً خاصاً بك لتحصل على أخبار مخصصة لك ولتتمتع بخاصية حفظ المقالات وتتلقى نشراتنا البريدية المتنوعة

لم تشترك بعد