Arts/Culture
4:22 pm
Mon February 27, 2012

Kid Rock to headline benefit concert for Detroit Symphony Orchestra

An unlikely musical guest will headline a one-night-only concert in May to benefit the Detroit Symphony Orchestra.

Michigan musician and rapper Kid Rock will headline the fundraising concert. The goal is to raise $1 million for the DSO; the orchestra faces a deficit of more than a $2 million this year.

Kid Rock will share the stage with his own Twisted Brown Trucker band and the DSO. They’ll play orchestral arrangements of some of Kid Rock’s hits, with DSO music director Leonard Slatkin conducting.

The Detroit News reports the idea for the collaboration came from Quicken Loans' founder Dan Gilbert during last year's DSO musicians' strike:

Rock received what he calls a "three-alarm phone call" last year during the DSO strike negotiations from Patrick McInnis, on behalf of Quicken Loans Chairman Dan Gilbert, asking if he'd be willing to play a benefit with the orchestra to help raise money for the orchestra. Rock, whose given name is Bob Ritchie, immediately agreed.

"I'm a musician, I care about the field," said Rock, 41. "My love's for all music. I don't go to the orchestra, I don't know that I've ever been to the DSO. But I know that people do, and it's a part of our culture and our history and our city, and it's another cornerstone that makes our city great. To see that fall by the wayside, knowing I can do something about it, wasn't something I was comfortable with."

DSO president Anne Parsons says she’d love to see the orchestra do more collaborations like this. She says "having Kid lead the way" sets a great example, and "I hope others will absolutely follow in his footsteps."

Tickets go on sale this Saturday at 10 a.m. and range from $100 to $1,500.

Parsons says the money will help fund DSO community outreach concerts, as well as health care benefits for the orchestra.