Oakwood Foundation welcomes Michael Israel to annual Red Tie Ball fundraiser

When the 7th annual Red Tie Ball fundraiser returns to Joe Louis Arena on April 21, it promises to be an electrifying event.

A live performance from world-renowned artist, Michael Israel, sponsored by Kelly’s Kidz and The Hermann Family, will highlight the annual Oakwood Foundation fundraiser, which this year is being held in honor of Winfred and Paula Weldon.

Israel, with his Art in Concert concept, has shared the stage with performers and celebrities as diverse as Bruce Springsteen and Garth Brooks, Warren Buffett and more. He has performed at presidential galas and Olympic ceremonies as well as on stages across the globe and is almost as well-known for his charitable work as his unique six-foot paintings he creates on spinning canvasses in front of live audiences.

“We are thrilled to have such an exciting artist as part of this important event,” said Carla O’Malley, Executive Director & President of the Oakwood Foundation. “We think this will be a truly unique evening that supports two very worthy causes.”

The seventh-annual event benefits the Oakwood Center for Exceptional Families in Dearborn, as well as the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NICU) at the Oakwood Hospital & Medical Center in Dearborn. The funds generated will support the operational costs of those facilities, as well as an endowment to support needy patient care for the two programs. The event features a sit-down dinner on the ice at the arena, as well as tours of the Detroit Red Wings locker room and visits to the Legends Club and Olympia Club. A silent auction will be a part of the festivities, and a live auction will take place after Israel’s performance, and include the paintings he creates.

The Oakwood NICU cares for about 500 premature and/or at-risk babies annually. Many go on to develop in a typical fashion, but some also need long-term medical treatments, therapies and other support when a life changing diagnosis is presented to the family.

The Center for Exceptional Families is a unique facility that provides a medical home for nearly 3,000 children with special needs and their families. Their multidisciplinary team offers a full range of programs to support patients, parents and siblings who often are not covered by insurance.

A Grand National Champion martial artist, Israel incorporates gravity-defying leaps and music into his performances. His larger-than-life images include cultural icons like The Beatles, Jimi Hendrix, Tiger Woods or Mohammad Ali to heart-wrenching scenes such as a firefighter cradling a rescued child against a backdrop of the American flag. He has helped raise millions for more than 60 charities, including the Special Olympics and the Ronald McDonald House. He said he was looking forward to the event, and raising funds for these worthy programs.

“Everyone is going to have an amazing time,” said Israel. “We’re going to work hard to make the event as successful as we can.”

For more information, visit www.oakwood.org/foundation. To find out more about Michael Israel and his performances, visit www.michaelisrael.com.