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Local Schools Pay First of Many Visits to GRAMMY Museum

By Eric Richardson
Published: Friday, December 05, 2008, at 02:53PM
GRAMMY Museum Ribbon Cutting Eric Richardson [Flickr]

Recording Academy President/CEO Neil Portnow speaks at the GRAMMY Museum ribbon cutting.

After waiting through a ribbon cutting ceremony that included speeches by dignitaries from the city, Recording Academy and AEG, students from middle and high schools in the 9th Council District were among the first to enter the GRAMMY Museum this morning.

Even AEG President & CEO Tim Leiweke was ready to get past the opening ceremonies and into normal operation for the $2.5 billion L.A. Live complex. "I'm really tired of press conferences," Leiweke told the crowd. "I promise this is the last one we do."

The Museum, which opens to the public tomorrow, hopes to host 100,000 students each year as part of a music education program. The kids on hand this morning were brought in by Councilwoman Jan Perry, and came from her 9th District. That district includes L.A. Live.

Recording Academy Chairman Jimmy Jam acted as host for the ceremony, and was clearly excited about the new venue. Jam has spent decades in the music industry, but said his experience didn't keep him from admiring the artifacts and exhibits inside. "When I'm in the museum," he said, "I feel like a child."

Perry and Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa both spoke of how excited they were to have L.A. Live and the GRAMMY Museum opening. Mayor Villaraigosa called the complex a "dream come true."

As part of its partnership with the GRAMMY Museum, American Express purchased the naming rights to the museum. The company used those rights to name the venue after Pierre Cossette, the producer who brought the GRAMMY Awards to television. The 85-year-old Cossette participated in the ribbon cutting.

The students were welcomed inside by musicians Ludacris and Jermaine Dupri, two of the celebrity docents waiting to tour them around the museum.


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