At Monday evening's first annual Dance Music Hall of Fame ceremony, RuPaul had the task most Donna Summer fans would covet - he inducted "I Feel Love" (song category), Giorgio Moroder & Pete Bellotte (producer category), and Donna Summer (artist category) into the Class of 2004 Dance Music Hall of Fame. Nearly four hours into the induction ceremony, RuPaul sashayed onto the stage at
Spirit New York on W. 27th Street. Dressed in a form-fitting black gown that accentuated his lean and long physique, RuPaul asked the audience - most of whom were music industry executives and dance music aficionados - "Do you remember the first time you heard 'I Feel Love'?" Explosive applause answered his question and he continued talking about the inextricable influence "I Feel Love" has had on dance music.
Of course, one of the men behind this dance classic is Giorgio Moroder. RuPaul segued from "I Feel Love" to speaking about Giorgio's long career in popular music, citing his involvement with Munich Machine in the early '70's, his success with Donna, and his film scoring achievements (Midnight Express, American Gigolo, and Flashdance, to name a few). Mr. Moroder was in attendance to receive the producer award on his and Pete Bellotte's behalf. Sporting a distinguished silver beard, Giorgio beamed an effervescent smile as he and RuPaul embraced. (The two actually collaborated with Elton John in 1994 for a remake of Elton's 1976 hit with Kiki Dee, "Don't Go Breaking My Heart.") Giorgio expressed his appreciation for audience's continued enthusiasm for the work he's produced and stated that "disco never died, they just call it 'dance music.'' He concluded his heartfelt remarks by thanking Pete, Donna, and all the artists he's worked with throughout his career.
"It's time to give our queen her award," exclaimed RuPaul as Giorgio exited the stage. "I've listened to
Bad Girls more than any other album over the years. That's a lot of years to be listening!" RuPaul spoke about the impact Donna has had on his life, from
Love to Love You Baby to Once Upon a Time, to Bad Girls, to the present. As with the other DMHOF artist inductees (the Bee Gees and Barry White), a video clip was presented showing some of the artist's work. For Donna, the "Medley" from the
Endless Summer video collection was selected, though "Bad Girls" was edited out. After the video screening, RuPaul introduced the individual who was accepting Donna's induction to the Dance Music Hall of Fame, none other than...
Poised, assured, and radiant, Amanda graced the stage with a mega-watt smile. She thanked the DMHOF board on her mother's behalf and extended Donna's appreciation to the audience for all the years of their support. Of all the people who stood on stage that night in front of the microphone, Amanda appeared the most cool, collected, and confident in her remarks. Her parents would be most proud!
To visit the complete list of Dance Music Hall inductees, visit www.dmhof.com
[Editor's Note: This article is part of a larger one that Christian is writing for SoulMusic.com. I'll let you know when the rest is posted.]