Diana Ross at TD Toronto Jazz Festival
June 24, 8:00 pm – 11:00 pm
Diana Ross defines icon. A remarkable career spanning over 50 years, Ms Ross is an international treasure. She is consider the most successful recording artist and entertainer of all time. President Obama said “she exudes glamour & grace, her influence is inescapable” as he presented her with a Medal of Freedom Award, the most prestigious award given to a U.S. citizen.
Beyond the fabled journey and legendary successes, Diana Ross considers her greatest accomplishment to be that of raising her five children. Seeing them flourish and becoming successful adults in each of their chosen fields, she remains the nucleus of a solid family that has expanded and gifted her five beautiful grandchild.
The dream began as a young girl on the North End section of Detroit. In a city that she would help to create a cultural movement of racial integration and popular music call, Motown (a portmanteau of Motor and Town). Her journey has inspired and empowered countless, celebrities, musicians, artists and young dreamers. A youthful Oprah Winfrey has said that Ms Ross “represented hope
for me, she was my role model, magical to me.”
As the dream became a legacy, her influence touched music, fashion, stage, film and TV.
Ross’ international achievements were acknowledged by the prestigious Kennedy Center Honors in Washington DC (2007). The honor celebrated her lustrous career of excellence in music, film, television and theatre, as well as her cultural influences, humanitarian work and her contributions to American culture. The National Academy of Recording Arts & Sciences celebrated her remarkable
career with its highest honor, The Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award in 2012.
Her portrayal of Billie Holliday in the classic film, “Lady Sings the Blues” resulted in an Oscar nomination and a trophy at the The Golden Globe Awards. Co-starring as an aspiring designer in the 1975 romantic comedy, Mahogany, Ross felt the role lent the perfect opportunity to personally sketch and design all the fashion in the timeless film.
As a stage actress, she won Broadway’s top honor with a Tony Award for her one-woman show, “An Evening with Diana Ross.” The same show was later broadcast as a special on television. From her landmark solo career to the early days as the leader of The Supremes Diana Ross shaped the sound of popular music, changing the landscape and paving way to contemporary music.
Her voice, described as “honey with soulful sensibility,” produced 14 Top ten albums, 18 #1 songs and music sales exceeding 100 millions units around the world. The latest in a string of #1s includes a new remix of the 1971 classic, “Ain’t No Mountain High Enough 2017” which topped the Billboard Dance Club Chart this year.
In 2017, the American Music Awards presented Ms Ross with the Lifetime Acheivement Award. In1993, she earned a Guinness World Record for her success in the United States and United Kingdom by having more hits than any other female artist on the charts with a career total of 70 hit singles. Career milestones include induction into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, The Songwriters Hall of Fame, National Academy of Recording Arts & Sciences Hero Award, NAACP Entertainer Award, Billboard’s Female Entertainer of the Century Award, The Soul Train Legend Award, two stars on the Hollywood Walk of Fame and will received the American Music Awards Lifetime Achievement Award in November 2017. And Ross is also one of the few celebrities to have two stars on the Hollywood Walk of Fame.
On July 21, 1983, Diana Ross drew a crowd of over 800,000 people to New York’s Central Park, one of the biggest audiences in history for a live concert. Soon after the show began, pouring rain and heavy wind threatened to put an end to the show, but she pushed on for much of the set, urging the drenched crowd to remain calm and stay with her. Eventually the storm put an end to the performance, but not before she promised her fans that she would return the next day. True to her word, she performed the entire concert again on July 22nd for the people of New York City.
Her love for life, her never-ending wonder, her appreciation of goals and achievements and her sheer human spirit define the icon that is Diana Ross.