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The Honolulu Advertiser
Posted on: Friday, May 14, 2010

Annual Starlight Ball a black-and-white delight

TGIF Staff

Hawaii news photo - The Honolulu Advertiser

A smaller-than-usual crowd couldn't dampen the success of the Honolulu Academy of Arts' Starlight Ball fundraiser.

Kawehi Haug

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The seventh annual Starlight Ball commenced last Saturday at the Honolulu Academy of Arts, and as always, it was a classy affair.

The event, which is the fundraising gala for the Academy's Art afterDark program, tends to bring out all kinds of partygoers from distinguished white-haired art lovers to the young and hot social types.

This year's theme was classic black and white and the Academy's outdoor courtyards were decorated accordingly, and so were the ball attendees, save for a few pops of rebellious color here and there. Though the crowd seemed smaller than it has been in past years, Lesa Griffith, communications director for the Academy, said that tickets sold well this year despite the slumping economy.

The highlight of the night: When DJ collective Nocturnal Sound Krew played Bon Jovi's "Livin' on a Prayer" to a crowded dance floor, then cut the sound, letting the crowd take over in a rousing sing-along. It was a loud, proud, Jovi-loving moment. ...

If we were to rank the performances of the three comedians at Capone's Mother's Day Comedy Smash last weekend it would be: 1. Lavell Crawford 2. J.J. Williamson 3. headliner Tracy Morgan. Crawford and Williamson gave fans their money's worth. Morgan also had his moments, but for the most part his act was surprisingly vulgar. That's not always a bad thing in comedy, but his best stuff probably came when he dealt with a heckler. ...

One last look at last weekend: The Hold Steady opted to hold its concert at NextDoor in Chinatown when it likely could have sold out a much bigger venue, and the result was a great, high-energy show (as expected). It was also hot and sweaty in the tiny venue, but the lucky few hundred who got in won't soon forget the experience. ...

Comedian and former radio personality on Da Bomb 102.7 Paul Ogata is returning to O'ahu July 9 for a comedy show at Pipeline Café. Also coming to Pipeline Café, on Aug. 28, is Owl City. Tickets for both shows are through www.groovetickets.com. Owl City is touring this summer with John Mayer and Maroon 5. ....

Author Dan Kois ("Facing Future," the story of Israel Kamakawiwo'ole) is in town this weekend for the Hawaii Book & Music Festival. His four appearances here include a reading at the Authors Pavilion and a panel discussion of Iz's life at the Hawaiian Culture Alana Pavilion. Check out his schedule for book signings at www.facing-future.com.