CONCERT ANNOUNCEMENT Billy Joel To Play By Tim Sullivan Hoya Staff Writer

Hoya File Photo Six-time Grammy award-winning pianist Billy Joel will perform in Georgetown’s Gaston Hall Nov. 11.

Rock and Roll Hall of Famer Billy Joel will perform on campus in Gaston Hall early next month before an audience that will be made up of Georgetown students, faculty and staff only, organizers announced yesterday.

Joel, who performed along with other music legends at “The Concert for NYC” in Madison Square Garden Friday, will be performing at Georgetown on Nov. 11.

The show will be called “Billy Joel: An Evening of Questions, Answers and a Little Music Plus Guest Pianist Richard Joo with Selections from Fantasies and Delusions.” Fantasies and Delusions, Joel’s 20th solo album, was released earlier this month and features classical selections played along with Joo.

The Georgetown Program Board and the Students of Georgetown, Incorporated, are sponsoring the concert and will be selling tickets for the concert, which will cost $25. Tickets will be sold on two yet-to-be determined days, with half of the more than 700 available seats to be sold each day.

GPB organizers said they were very excited about bringing Joel to campus..

“This is going to be one of the most memorable events of our undergraduate careers,” GPB Chairman Randy Rivera (COL ’02) said. “It’s going to be a night to remember.”

The format of the show will be a combination of a lecture and a concert, featuring a question-and-answer session along with musical performances.

“We’ve never done a show in Gaston, and this is going to be a really intimate night with Billy Joel,” GPB Concerts Chair Justin Barra (COL ’02) said, calling Joel the biggest star to perform at Georgetown in the four years he has been here. “There is going to be a lot of interaction between the audience and the performer – We’re going to find out what he’s like as a person,” Barra said.

Specific plans for ticket distribution have yet to be finalized, but Rivera said GPB and The Corp will be prepared for a widespread demand for tickets.

“We understand the magnitude of it and we’re taking the appropriate steps to ensure a fair distribution,” Rivera said.

According to Rivera, GPB had wanted to sponsor an additional concert this semester but was not originally planning to sign someone of Joel’s caliber. The Corp’s additional sponsorship allowed GPB to sign him without exceeding its budget for the semester.

Rivera declined to say how much it cost to bring Joel to Georgetown.

Barra said Joel approached GPB about the concert rather than being actively solicited by the board because he enjoys playing on college campuses. According to Barra, he hopes that means Joel will be enthusiastic about the show.

Earlier this month, GPB sponsored a performance by the Roots and Blackalicious in McDonough Gymnasium that was hailed at the time as the major entertainment event of the semester. Rivera said that by bringing Joel to campus after the Roots and Blackalicious, they were attempting to cater to a variety of musical tastes.

Students were enthusiastic about Joel’s performance.

“I’m really excited,” Kelsey Shannon (COL ’04) said. “I’ve seen him before and he puts on a hell of a show.”

Sarah Stuart (COL ’02) echoed the sentiment.

“I’m very impressed that they got the money for that.”

Laura Juffa (COL ’02) said Joel is an “amazing” performer.

“I love Billy Joel,” she said.

Joel is a six-time Grammy award-winning pianist who has been a major figure in pop music for the last 30 years. His biggest hits include “Piano Man,”New York State of ind,”Only the Good Die Young,”We Didn’t Start the Fire” and “Scenes From an Italian Restaurant,” among many others. He was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1999, and was the first performer ever to put on a concert at Yankee Stadium in New York.

He is also well known for being one of the first Western artists allowed to perform in the former Soviet Union. Joel traveled to Leningrad in 1987 and helped to bridge the social gaps between the U.S. and U.S.S.R. He has also been acclaimed for his advocacy of numerous social issues, most prominently his support for fishermen from his native Long Island.

In his latest work, Joel’s career has turned more to classical music, including his recent Fantasies and Delusions. He recently completed a 25-city tour with fellow legendary pianist-singer Elton John.

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