MALIBU, CA — When actor and recording artist Robert Davi took to the stage for a November 12 benefit concert, his compelling voice could be heard outside the pavilion and well into the far stretches of the jam-packed parking lot of the Malibu Jewish Center.
The dynamic performing artist’s powerful message was as crystal clear, informative and persuasive as it was entertaining.
Davi’s inspired communication, in both song and emergency appeal, reverberated quite well the stated mission of Mending Kids, an international organization that raises money and awareness for children in dire need of corrective and transformational surgeries:
“When you touch one child, you forever change the earth we all share.”
Davi — whose celebrated new album, titled “Davi Sings Sinatra: On the Road to Romance” — donated his distinguished talent to entertain with phenomenal passion and far-reaching purpose the scores of deep-pocketed celebrants attending Casino Night for Mending Kids.
Such well-known celebrities who walked the red carpet included Davi’s good friend, prolific Emmy and Golden Globe Award winner Martin Sheen.
Some in the audience paid as much as $5,000 each to help give impoverished children — born with congenital defects — a fighting chance at enjoying long, productive lives.
The star-studded event was organized by Mending Kids Malibu Guild executive director Robyn Moore Gibson, who learned firsthand about the importance of providing crucial corrective surgery when one of the sons she bore with notable actor and humanitarian Mel Gibson entered the world with a cleft palate.
Although the Gibsons were blessed with a financial opportunity to remedy their son’s anomaly, children living in many developing countries are not as fortunate.
During Davi’s invigorating hour-long set, the famous actor who packs an illustrious movie and television list of credits, honored the real-life and significant roles Mrs. Gibson, her dedicated volunteer staff and two prominent medical surgeons have maintained in this altruistic, ongoing effort.
Joining Davi on stage were Dr. William Magee, who said he has performed more than 75 plastic surgeries on children since 2004; and Dr. Alfredo Trento, a pediatric cardiac surgeon, who announced he has given more than 400 at-risk youth worldwide new leases on life.
Children representing more than 40 countries have been flown with their parents to the United States to receive life-saving surgeries to correct congenital heart defects, orthopedic abnormalities, severe scoliosis and cranial facial deformities.
To further commend the benevolent actions of those who continue to answer the call of Mending Kids, Davi made certain he delivered to donors a Vegas-style performance they would not soon forget.
He gave the audience a scrumptious taste of his new CD, which was recorded at Capitol Studios in Hollywood, and sang with enthusiasm his brilliant interpretations of such Frank Sinatra favorites as “I’ve Got The World On A String,” “Nice N’ Easy,” “You Make Me Feel So Young,” and “Come Fly With Me.”
Accompanying Davi was a highly impressive sextet that included historic percussionist Emil Richards, whose jazz combo toured the world with Sinatra in 1962 to benefit underprivileged children; the group helped found the first hospital in Israel for Jewish and Arab children.
Richards was also a member of the 30-piece orchestra which backed Davi as he recorded his debut album, tracked at Capitol Studios — the same place Sinatra once dominated the microphone.
“Davi Sings Sings Sinatra: On the Road To Romance” is currently available online and in stores nationwide.
To learn how you can help Mending Kids, go to http://mendingkids.org/.