Legendary composer and singer, Smokey Robinson, was the headliner for the Chicago State University Foundation Concert Gala. The university staff and volunteers greeted guests with a smile and made everyone feel welcome and comfortable. The show opened with Val Warner from Windy City Live. She acknowledged the sponsors, university leaders and dignitaries; including Senator Emil Jones and his wife.
At 73 years old, Smokey Robinson proved that his music and appeal is timeless. The audience's ages ranged from senior citizens to teenagers. Mr. Robinson's music and presence captivated 4 generations at the same time. Nineteen year old college student, Jasmine Mayberry, stated in her blog post that "His comfort and love of his work made it seem like it wasn’t even a concert, but just a large crowd of Smokey Robinson’s closest friends, sitting around with him, sharing stories and songs and memories." Mr. Robinson said that, when asked what he does when he hears his music on the radio; he responds "I turn it up!" He seemed to enjoy the crowd as they sang along to classics, such as My Girl, Ooh Baby Baby, and You Really Got a Hold on Me. When he performed Tracks of My Tears, the room exploded with a standing ovation. Mr Robinson closed out the show with Cruisin, and brought the house down. His current project, Now and Then, is available at exclusively at Cracker Barrel, both in stores and online.
Smokey Robinson is the personification of Chicago State University's vision to "trasform lives globally and locally." Katéy Assem, Executive Director of the Chicago State University Foundation (CSUF), expressed the necessity of fundraising efforts to realize this vision in a recent interview. Visit the CSUF website for more opportunities to support or volunteer with the organization.