Philadelphia, PA — After a near fatal car accident changed his life dramatically nearly 25 years ago, TEDDY PENDERGRASS, is using his voice to help improve the quality of life for survivors of spinal cord injuries (SCI).
The Teddy Pendergrass Alliance (TPA), a non-profit organization which helps people with SCI rebuild their lives, has announced an elaborate star-studded extravaganza – the premiere Black Music Month event, “Teddy 25 – A Celebration Of Life, Hope, and Possibilities” – to be held June 10th at Philadelphia’s Kimmel Center.
Hosted by actress/comedienne, Mo’Nique, “Teddy 25” celebrates his life, music, and legacy honoring celebrities, industry executives, medical personnel, organizations, and personal friends & family who have contributed over the 25 years to his well-being. Patti La Belle, Ruben Studdard and Stephanie Mills are among the performers confirmed along with Teddy himself who will premiere a new song, written specifically for Teddy 25.
The Teddy Pendergrass Alliance will honor Whitney Houston, Arsenio Hall, Regis Philbin, Ashford & Simpson, Cathy Hughes (CEO & founder of TV One/Radio One), Mark P. May (CEO, Clear Channel), Donald Trump, Daniel Markus & Shep Gordon (managers), Bob Krasnow (CEO of Elektra/Asylum Records), and his longtime publicist Lisa Barbaris for their friendship and assistance through the years.
Along with the honorees, invited celebrity guests include Stevie Wonder, Alicia Keys, Eddie LeVert, Kindred, Sheryl Lee Ralph, Jill Scott, Musiq, Vivian Green, Jaheim, and Usher to name a few. Proceeds from the black tie gala will be donated to The Teddy Pendergrass Alliance.
As the first Black male solo artist to achieve five consecutive multi-platinum albums including a multiple of Grammy nominations, American Music Awards, and several other honors culmed from classics like “Come On And Go With Me,” “Turn Off The Lights,” and “Close The Door,” Teddy Pendergrass has sustained a career that spans over three decades; first as a front man for the infamous Harold Melvin & The Blue Notes, then as a successful solo artist. His sold out “ladies-only” arena tours are legendary.
For 25 years, Teddy has been an outspoken advocate for survivors of SCI, dedicating his time and talent, showing by example that there is life for people disabled by spinal cord injuries. “Fortunately I am blessed to be able to continue to work and be productive as a performer.” explains Teddy who after 19 years away from the stage returned in May of 2001 to a sold-out tour.
He established the non-profit organization, The Teddy Pendergrass Alliance (TPA), and partnered with The National Spinal Cord Injuries Association and other organizations to spread a message that there’s life after a spinal cord injury. “I was on top of the world and felt utterly invincible, until one tragic evening in March 1982; an automobile accident caused my life to change drastically. I became one of over 250,000 Americans living with a spinal cord injury (SCI).” shares Teddy. “From personal experience I recognize a strong need for a coordinated outreach to individuals with SCI that will encourage them to reach their maximum potential and that’s the mission of The Teddy Pendergrass Alliance. It is important that those of us with SCI continue to LIVE and are given the right to LIVE as individuals in the way that we choose and that society recognizes that people with SCI are people, not conditions or diseases. We all have challenges; a Disability does not mean inability,” explains Teddy.
In 2005 Teddy Pendergrass was inducted into The SCI Hall Of Fame created to celebrate and honor those individuals and organizations that have made significant contributions to the quality of life and advancements for all individuals with spinal cord injuries.
Jackie O. Asare
4Sight Media Relations, Inc.