"Sparkle" could be an important moment for Detroit's musical and film talent, according to the Detroiter who's currently busy collaborating with Lady Gaga.
Kern Brantley is working as the band leader for Gaga's European tour, which is scheduled to be in Bucharest, Romania, on Thursday. That will prevent him from being with the musicians, singers and actors who'll gather at Emagine Royal Oak Thursday night for a celebration of Whitney Houston that's happening before a midnight screening of "Sparkle."
Brantley helped the "Sparkle" team find some of the local musicians who appear in the film. He thinks the movie will be good for the Motor City's artists.
"What I think this movie means to the local musicians is an opportunity to be seen in the world spotlight on the big screen and a glimpse of hope to the music and film community in Detroit, that we can make great films and records with all the talent that's right here in Michigan," said Brantley via e-mail this week. "I believe that music and film is what can put Detroit on a positive path to prosperity, because of the blueprint that was made by Motown, this movie is a reflection of where we started and (where) we can go."
As a musician born and raised in Detroit, Brantley said he's been blessed to travel the world with the biggest pop artist in the world. His message to the city is one of hope.
"Detroit, we can make it happen, we just need the outlet," said Brantley.
The Thursday event at Emagine Royal Oak will feature live music from the Sparkle band, a group of local musicians who worked on the movie, and performances by several singers, including Beth Griffith, who was Whitney Houston's stand-in on the set. Here's a clip of the band's rehearsal for the event:
The tribute is scheduled to start sometime after 10 p.m. General admission tickets are $25 and are available at Emagine Royal Oak.
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