His Purpleness has deemed that the proceeds from his recent gig at the Roseland in Portland, OR will help the American Music Program Pacific Crest Jazz Orchestra get to New York City for the Essentially Ellington Competition & Festival. Program director Thara Memory told NME that: "The promoter is a longtime friend of mine and he told Prince about the program. Prince was looking for something to give some money too anyway, and that’s how it came about."
Considering the cheapest ticket for the Roseland show was $175 at face value, the students should have quite a trip. A lot has been said about the ticket prices Prince is charging for this tour, so it's nice to see him giving some of it back. $175 is pretty off the chain crazy for a ticket... but it is Prince in a theater sized room y'all.
When asked if the generous gift had the children starstruck, Memory said,
"They get to meet a lot of great musicians because when people hear them they say that they want to come and hang out with them. So they’re not really starstruck about Prince. He is just one of the artists that they know about. I think they’d be more starstruck if he walked into a rehearsal and gave them some pointers. I think that would be the next level."
Geez lady, say "thanks". Do not incur the wrath of The Purple One.
The Wynton Marsalis-directed Essentially Ellington Competition will take place at New York’s Lincoln Centre between May 10 and 12 and is a competition of high school jazz bands from around the world.