The Los Angeles Committee of Human Rights Watch had their most successful fundraising dinner to date, raising more than every year prior.
The event, which took place last week at the Beverly Hilton Hotel, had an immense amount of celebrities and influential people in attendance including Eric Esrailian, Serj Tankian, Angela Sarafyan, Kimberly Marteau Emerson, Mike Medavoy, David Foster, Katherine McPhee, and Linda Ramone. Last night also introduced the inaugural Promise Award, followed by a very special performance by Ryan Tedder and Drew Brown of OneRepublic.
Inspired by the film and song that powerfully depicted the atrocities committed against the Armenian people; the award recognizes an outstanding song, television show, or film that advances the values of equity and justice in an original and powerful way. Fittingly, the inaugural honor was awarded to the late legendary singer and songwriter Chris Cornell in recognition of his song, The Promise. The award was presented by Producers of The Promise Eric Esrailian, Mike Medavoy, Writer/Director Terry George, and Singer/Songwriter, Human Rights Activist, and Composer Serj Tankian. Chris’s wife, Vicky Cornell, accepted the award on his behalf and was accompanied by Cornell’s bandmates, Kim Thayil and Matt Cameron of Soundgarden.
Pioneering recording artist Chris Cornell, who sadly passed away in May, wrote the title song for the film, The Promise, the first major film about the Armenian Genocide. The song and its video compellingly weave the Genocide with humanitarian crises of today. The song focuses on courage, perseverance, and hope — connecting us to emotions that characterize and amplify the worldwide struggle for human rights. Cornell donated all proceeds from the song to benefit refugees and children, and his song continues to inspire millions as an anthem for the human rights movement.
“We are proud to name this award after The Promise, and present the inaugural award to Chris Cornell’s inspiring song,” stated Justin Connolly, Director of Human Rights Watch’s Los Angeles Committee.
Following the award, songwriter, Grammy Award-winning record producer, and OneRepublic front man Ryan Tedder graced the stage and honored the late Soundgarden lead by performing an acoustic version of “The Promise” with bandmate Drew Brown to a standing ovation.