Sunday, December 29, 2013

Happy New Year from Paris, France

MODA Entertainment Happy New Year
Happy New Year 2014!
From Paris

MODA Entertainment
 MODA Entertainment
Since 1997

Thursday, December 26, 2013

Dear NYC Mayor Michael Bloomberg,

Dear Mayor Mike Bloomberg,
We will miss you! You did amazing things for New York City.
Thank you for your support through the years!

MODA Entertainment Announces Mayor Bloomberg To Declare April 29th Duke Ellington Day in NYC
MODA Entertainment - Duke Ellington Day
(c) Richard Zampella

Travel Green: Take the "A" Train - Duke Ellington Day - Richard Zampellla

Richard Zampella on Duke Ellington Day
(c) Richard Zampella
©Richard Zampella announcing Duke Ellington Day
by Mayor Bloomberg of the City of New York
125th Street New York City

MODA Entertainment is proud to announce that New York City mayor Michael R. Bloomberg will declare April 29th, 2009 "Duke Ellington Day"

Apr 29, 2009 – Richard Zampella is proud to announce that New York City mayor Michael R. Bloomberg will declare April 29th, 2009 "Duke Ellington Day" in honor of the 110th anniversary of the jazz legend’s birth. The proclamation will be presented to Duke Ellington’s grandson, Paul Ellington. Paul is the executor of the Duke Ellington Estate and musical director/ leader of the world famous Duke Ellington Orchestra.

The Duke Ellington Estate is represented by New York based MODA Entertainment for marketing, merchandising and licensing. In honor of the 110th Anniversary of Duke Ellington’s birth, MODA Entertainment is proud to present special events on “Duke Ellington Day” in New York City to coincide with the proclamation.

In commemoration and celebration of the legendary musician and cultural icon, The Islands Of The Bahamas is sponsoring an April 29th run of the last surviving 1939 “A” train. The inspiration for Duke Ellington's signature tune, Take the A Train, the historic and beautifully restored “A” train will depart 125th Street at 10 a.m. on Wednesday, April 29, making express stops through Manhattan and Brooklyn to Howard Beach in Queens. Open to the public, the festive round-trip runs will prove once again that taking the “A” train is still indeed the quickest way to Sugar Hill in Harlem.

Duke Ellington, one of the 20th century's most renowned musicians, is among the signature figures in the history of jazz. Whether as composer or band leader, Ellington transcended musical and racial boundaries. When asked what inspired him to write, Ellington replied, "My men and my race are the inspiration of my work. I try to catch the character and mood and feeling of my people."

In his fifty-year career, Ellington played over 20,000 performances worldwide.

Duke Ellington received 13 Grammy Awards, including the Grammy Lifetime Achievement. He also was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the French Legion of Honor and the Pulitzer Prize. His image appeared on a US stamp in 1986. Ellington is the first African-American to solo on a U.S. coin. The Duke Ellington quarter was released in January of this year.

Ellington died on May 24, 1974, a month after his 75th birthday. He is buried in Woodlawn Cemetery in NYC. His funeral at the Cathedral of St. John the Divine was attended by over 12,000 people.

Ella Fitzgerald nailed it for the world: "A genius has passed."

New York Times Links of Duke Ellington Day, 110th Anniversary

 MODA Entertainment
Since 1997

MODA Entertainment NYC
MODA Entertainment Presents
Duke Ellington Day

Monday, December 16, 2013

Monday, February 11, 2013

Remembering John Kerr

Actor John Kerr dies. It was a pleasure to intervew him for ICONS Radio Hour.
Obituary LA Times.

Remembering John Kerr:
A sensitive, boy-next-door leading man of American films and television in the 1950s and 60s, John Kerr (who was the son of actors) made a big splash in the Broadway (1953) and film (1956) versions of "Tea and Sympathy". His best known TV roles were as lawyers, a profession he opted to pursue in 1970, retiring from acting except for occasional appearances.

John Kerr's first appearance was as the son of Ruth Chatterton in "Tomorrow and Tomorrow" at Cape Playhouse in 1940. Kerr was educated at Phillips Exeter, and Harvard. During summers, Kerr became a junior fixture at Cape Playhouse, and appeared with the late Gertrude Lawrence in "O Mistress Mine" and "September Tide." Kerr entered Harvard in 1948 and he was a member of the Brattle Theatre Company. Kerr played in Shakespeare's "A Midsummer Night's Dream", "Twelfth Night" and in Christopher Fry's "A Sleep of Prisoners."

Kerr made his Broadway debut just months after his 1952 graduation from Harvard in "Bernadine". The following year, he created what is perhaps his most memorable role, Tom, the prep school lad whom his classmates believe to be a homosexual and who is eventually bedded by the schoolmaster's wife "to save him" from such a life. Kerr earned a Best Supporting Tony for his work and was whisked to Hollywood. He made his feature debut playing a suicidal patient in a mental institution in Vicente Minnelli’s "The Cobweb" (1955). In "Gaby" (1956), he played a World War II soldier having an affair with Leslie Caron. That same year, he co-starred opposite Deborah Kerr in the film version of "Tea and Sympathy". Two years later, Kerr was the doomed Lt. Cable romantically paired with island girl France Nuyen in the musical "South Pacific". After these high profile features, he found himself by 1961 in the more modestly budgeted (to say the least) version of "The Pit and the Pendulum", produced by Roger Corman and co-starring Vincent Price. Kerr's film career effectively ended that year, although he played a few bit roles in features after receiving his law degree.

Throughout the years John Kerr has appeared in numerous television roles. Kerr had begun on the small screen in 1953, guest-starring on an episode of "Summer Studio One" (CBS). Throughout the 50s and into the 60s, he continued to appear in productions. He finally hooked onto a regular series with "Arrest and Trial" (ABC, 1963-64), a show that now appears to be a prototype for "Law & Order", splitting the action between the cops and the prosecutors, one of whom Kerr played. He again played a district attorney on "Peyton Place" (ABC), where his character was prosecuting Rodney Harrington (Ryan O'Neal) for murder. Since passing the California bar in 1970, Kerr has acted only occasionally.

He was in the TV-movie Western "Yuma" (ABC, 1971) and from time-to-time appeared on episodes of "The Streets of San Francisco" as a detective in one or two scenes. By the 80s, he was rarely seen, although one could catch him as a ferry captain in "Bay Coven" (NBC, 1987).