Here we go everyone. Let’s have a round table discussion regarding tonight’s enormously successful Idol Gives Back special. Personally, I was very disappointed that Michael Buble was not on the show as expected. However, the duet between Elvis and Celine made up for it. It was unbelievable wasn’t it? And Josh Groban was amazing as always plus those adorable African children were so sweet while performing with him.

However, it was the footage of the children that was the most memorable. What a horrible situation. I wanted to grab everyone of them through my television screen and bring them into my home. It was so heartbreaking and, as Simon said, they are truly living “hell on earth”.

I hope all the politicians were watching and hanging their heads in shame, knowing that they have allowed this deplorable situation to deteriorate to this level.

About Masterclass Lady

Rosanne (Giallonardo) Simunovic began her musical career in Timmins, Ontario. She studied piano with Anne Pizzale and later, at an advanced level, with Soeur Anita Vaugeois (Sister Cecile of Les Soeurs De L’Assomption in Timmins). Her vocal and accompaniment skills were nurtured by her aunt, the late Dorothea Mascioli. When Rosanne graduated from O’Gorman High School, she moved on to the University of Toronto where she continued her piano and vocal studies while attaining a Bachelor of Arts Degree. She was hired as a piano accompanist for several musical companies, most notably, the National Ballet Of Canada. She presently holds an A.R.C.T. Teacher’s Diploma in Voice from the Royal Conservatory of Music in Toronto. Rosanne has studied choral conducting with numerous well known Canadian Conductors, including Wayne Riddell of Montreal, Quebec and the internationally renowned Dr. Elmer Iseler. She has been a founding member of numerous community-based arts organizations: the Timmins Arts Council, later known as Arts & Culture Timmins, the Timmins Symphony Orchestra, and, the Timmins Youth Singers…as well as the TYS Alumnus choir, the Timmins Concert Singers. In 1987, she was also selected to be the conductor of the Timmins Board Of Education Choir, comprised of talented students from Grades 5 to 8. In 1988, she was elected to the Board Of Directors of the Ontario Choral Federation (now known as Choirs Ontario), where she served as Chair of the Festivals Committee for six consecutive seasons. In 1996, in honour of the Ontario Choral Federation’s 25th Anniversary, Rosanne was selected as one of 25 recipients of the OCF’s Distinguished Service Award for outstanding contribution to the choral art. The ceremony was presided by Lieutenant Governor, Hal Jackman. In November 1997, Rosanne Simunovic was selected by the Rotary Club Of Timmins to receive the prestigious Paul Harris Award for her years of dedication to the artistic development of young musical talent in Timmins. In August of 2002, Rosanne Simunovic was selected by the Board Of Directors of Choirs Ontario to serve as Conductor of both the Provincial Junior and Teen Choir Camps, now renamed in honour of the Camp Benefactors, Don and Lillian Wright. In November 2002, Rosanne was the one of the recipients of the Commemorative Medal for the Golden Jubilee of Queen Elizabeth II, honouring her work in the development of the arts in Timmins. Under Rosanne Simunovic’s direction, the Timmins Youth Singers and the Timmins Concert Singers have been featured in numerous choral festivals and performing opportunities outside of Timmins. In 1985, they were selected to partici


  1. I loved Kelly’s performance. It was so wonderfully heartfelt. She’s amazing.


  2. Yes, she is a sweetie, but her voice sounded very tired and unhealthy. I hope she is not sick or exhausted from her hectic schedule.


  3. I really enjoyed Carrie Underwood’s video of her time in Africa. The whole show was draining. I, too, wanted to adopt about a thousand kids. And, I think that the deplorable situation that our country has allowed to continue in the Katrina ravaged parts of our country is a horrendous tragedy and a national shame. I’m so glad they showed that situation. I donated tonight but even the millions they raise seem like so little when you look at the problems they are trying to tackle. I know it helps but it was all very overwhelming.


  4. I don’t see how anyone with a little change to spare could not have donated after viewing the videos of the sad, suffering children. The two that affected me the most were the 12-year-old boy and his sister living on their own without parents, and the little girl in LA who missed her mother because she was working three jobs. Different circumstances, but equally sad nonetheless. I’m glad Idol did this and I know the money will help, but unfortunately it isn’t going to eliminate this enormous problem. I am sure Carrie Underwood will never be the same after visiting those children in Africa. She looked quite moved by them.
    As for the music on Idol, I missed the first season of Idol and never heard Kelly much, but really liked her performance last night. And I’m usually a huge fan of Annie Lennox, but her version of Bridge Over Troubled Water didn’t impress me very much. After hearing Clay Aiken sing that song on the Idol final in season two, I think it will be hard for anyone to do it any better than that.


  5. You’re the expert, VML, but I just re-listened to Kelly’s performance and it was absolutely wonderful and incredibly moving. IMO she is a significantly better vocal talent and performer than other idols. Compared to Melinda, more range. Compared to Jordin, more control. Compared to LaKisha, more power. Compared to Carrie (who also has an amazing voice) more passion in her performance. Compared to the judges’ favorite Fantasia, just listen to their Christmas duet a few years ago and the disparity between their voices is apparent. What do you think, oh wise one?

    I could listen to Kelly sing any day, any genre.

    I didn’t hear tired or unhealthy in her voice–I just felt her performance and marveled at her talent.

    Just needed to say this, and could think of no one better with whom to share my opinion.

    Thanks for sharing your insights and looking forward to upcoming reviews.


  6. Michelle in Ottawa April 26, 2007 at 12:12 pm

    I only started watching AI in season three and so never saw Kelly in her early stages of her career. I really enjoyed her style last night though and I liked that song better than most of the music by her on the radio. Did anyone notice a sort of awkward moment right at the end of the song where both her and Jeff Beck seemed like they weren’t sure what to do?

    I felt the same as Elaine did about Annie Lennox’s performance, I just love her distinct voice normally but wasn’t sure that she was in her element with that song. But I am still a big big fan or hers and have been since her Eurythmics days.

    I am probably the only one who feels this way, but the Elvis/Celine “duet” totally creeped me out. 🙂 I think I would enjoy listening to it more than watching it. Then again, I generally feel that way about Celine Dion alone :0) She comes off as being very snooty on stage and not connected to her audience or fans, but her studio recordings sound just the opposite, very heartfelt and personal. (again just my personal opinion of which I am probably alone in having :0)
    Thanks again MCLady, your commentary about AI and singing in general is always eye-opening!


  7. I am wondering who is going to ministrate all the millions of dollars as too oft the money ends up with corrupt rulers. Think of Rhodesia – now called Zimbabwe – it is a train wreck under the rule of Mugabe. I would hate to see all the generous outpouring to go for naught.


  8. I was especially moved by the performances of Josh Groban and Carrie Underwood. Josh Groban had such nice chemistry with the African Children’s Choir. The children looked so happy to be there, and they looked professional and sounded great. I enjoyed the part at the end when they had the group hug with Josh Groban.

    Carrie Underwoods rendition of “I’ll Stand by You” was lovely too. I liked the footage of her itneracting with the children.

    Kelly Clarkson looked beautiful, but I agree with you MCL, that her voice didn’t sound as good as it has in the past. I’d be interested to here more of your insights about why her voice sounds unhealthy to you, MCL.

    I enjoyed Annie Lennox’s interaction with the children. Michelle, I agree with you that Annie’s performance wasn’t the best I’ve heard her, though. The Elvis and Celine duet creeped me out too.

    And Il Divo–I enjoyed their version of “Somewhere”.

    I liked that the contestants got to work with Quincy Jones. In my humble opinion he is among the greats of music producers. It was also great that they got to work with Bono. I admire his music, but even more, I admire his humanitarian work.

    I’m so happy that not only does AI want to help children in other countries, but that they want to help children who need it in the US as well. I am from Kentucky and while Lexington (where is live) is relatively affluent, I also have first hand knowledge of the poverty stricken conditions in eastern Kentucky. Eastern Kentucky has much natural beauty, but many of the people who live there don’t have access to a lot of the advantages that you would assume that people in 21st century USA would enjoy. I also found it sad that almost 2 years after Hurricane Katrina, people in Louisiana are still living in such misery.

    The combination of the awareness of the misery of some of our brothers and sisters, and the beauty of the music moved me to tears. I’m glad that AI let us share in this opportunity to give back.


  9. I throughly enjoyed last night’s show – I only wish that they had told the contestants earlier that no one was going home, so that they could have avoided two hours of “is it me?” 🙂

    Would have loved for Clay to be on singing Bridge Over Troubled Water……not the best performance by Annie Lennox although her piano playing was awesome. Clay has been in Afghanistan working for UNICEF as well and it would have been nice if Idol had acknowledged his efforts as a past Idol contestant.

    The images from Africa, Louisiana and Kentucky were heart wrenching and painful to watch. We talked about the show at work today and many of us were in tears. You know that these kind of conditions exist – but seeing it on a show such as Idol, with its millions of viewers – what an impact. I’m sure helped awareness a lot.

    Enjoyed seeing Kelly Clarkson look like herself for a change – I prefer her more “wholesome” image. LOL Loved Carrie, loved Josh Groban with his kid’s choir.

    All in all a great show and well worth watching. I’m glad they were able to do so much for charity.


  10. I was sharing some of the video footage with my students today. No one realized or understood the level of suffering and degradation that these people – especially the children- have to endure on a daily basis.

    Quincy and Bono – I love them as well. Remarkable musicians and remarkable humanitarians.


  11. ‘Idol’ segment judged unfair


    I live in Lexington too Yamilé – small world, eh?

    Born in Louisville, moved to Harlan in my sophmore year because my mother went to the nursing school there (a very good school). Moved to Lexington so i could work in the Thoroughbred horse industry.

    Anyway, there are riches in the mountains that have nothing to do with money. The Harlan Boys Choir has toured in Europe since the mid-60s and is only one example that pokes holes in the “poor Appalachian” stereotype.

    I hope AI gets back to the point – testing and finding untapped talent.


  12. Xena, it is a small world! I always enjoy your comments.

    I grew up in North Carolina, came to Lexington to go to UK and ended up getting a job here. I’m sure you’re keeping busy with the thoroughbreds right now with Keeneland and the Derby coming up.

    It is true that there are a lot of positive aspects of Eastern KY that weren’t reflected in the video segments. I’ve never heard the Harlan Boys Choir perform, but I’ve been told how great they are. I enjoy the natural beauty of eastern Kentucky–the Red River Gorge is one of my favorite places.

    Thanks for the link to the article. It gives a more balanced view of eastern KY than was reflect in the AI video segment.


  13. Hello, Masterclasslady.

    I was wondering what you thought of Elvis as a singer? And would you ever give a master class on an Elvis vocal? 😉


  14. Haley – a Masterclass on Elvis? Do I dare go near the King???

    I loved and still do love Elvis. He was such a naturally gifted musician and vocalist and, actually, that southern drawl assisted his smooth and resonant singing style

    What a voice! And the star power.


  15. His southern drawl helped? Interesting! I think you’d do a wonderful job tackling Elvis!

    I’ve been reading through your blog – and enjoying it immensely. It helps the tone-deaf like me understand what’s going on. Thanks for sharing and,

    Thanks for the reply!


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