Whitney! A Grand Celebration
Los Angeles-The celebration of the life of R&B/ pop songstress Whitney Houston continues on and will be in full effect for quite some time. Houston, who tragically passed away earlier this year on the eve of the Grammy Awards, is served well with a well-put together, sparkling exhibit at the Grammy Museum in downtown Los Angeles.
The exhibition, which opened a day before Houston’s last film, “Sparkle” made its worldwide premiere in Los Angeles, is a vast collection of the singer’s awards, private memorabilia, images, recordings and eye-catching outfits that embodied the star she had become.
It’s difficult to imagine that the electric vibrancy Houston possessed in her music will never be heard live again. Houston was the complete package that worldwide stardom evokes. She was breathtakingly beautiful, could melt your heart with her endearing, mega-watt smile and then stoked your musical fires with a supremely gifted voice that only could come from an angel in Heaven.
“Whitney! Celebrating the Musical Legacy of Whitney Houston,” which will be on display at the Grammy Museum through February 24, 20113, captures a lot of the little nuggets about her life her fans would appreciate. It was Houston’s fans, in large, that made this happen, said Bob Santelli, executive director of the museum. Speaking to a small throng of reporters inside the Clive Davis Theater, Santelli said it was Houston’s fans who pushed for something to be done.
“The idea for this exhibit came from fans,” Santelli said. “Over the course of the last six or seven months, many fans have come up to me, personally, as I walked around the exhibit, emailed, etc., and asked, ‘Why doesn’t the Grammy Museum honor Whitney Houston and the legacy of Whitney Houston? After all she is such a large part of Grammy Award show history. She is such a great Grammy legend.’”
If ever there was a singer defined by the greatness of her voice, it’s Whitney Houston, who was heavily influenced by the likes of Aretha Franklin, her mother, Cissy Houston, her aunt Dionne Warwick and singer Chaka Khan among others. It is that magnetic voice of Houston that made her a once-in-a-lifetime talent that inspired many, gave solace to others and was able to lift more.
From the choir robe she sung in as a youth to personal letters to the gaudy dresses she wore, “Whitney! Celebrating the Legacy of Whitney Houston,” outlines the dazzle, glamour and humble beginning showcase of a woman who truly brought joy to the world. Houston’s faith in God played a large part in her bringing that joy to millions around the globe.
Narada Michael Walden, an Emmy-Award artist, and one of the more accomplished producers and musicians in the business, worked with Houston on her first three albums. Michael Walden, like some members of Houston’s family, attended the exhibit opening. Michael Walden said the most unique thing about Houston is how she expressed her love for her Creator.
“The most unique thing about her is that she loved God intensely,” Michael Walden said. She was truly a God-lover. Every session we did she talked about her love for God and Jesus Christ. Jesus was always big in her heart. And that would give her the strength to breath deep and to begin whatever song she was going to record that day, and seek help to get through this thing called life as Prince would call it.
“Because it really is difficult to get up every day and be at your best, and dazzle with a light and spirit and inspire…every day. That was her job. So I think that was the greatest thing about her was that she truly plugged in to that divine spirit-so that it come straight through her, and use all those skills she had, all that beauty she had to wow us. And we’re still wowed.”