Last night, the David Lynch Foundation’s Silence The Violence concert dazzled audiences at Washington D.C.’s The Anthem. The star-studded benefit saw Katy Perry, Mavis Staples, Norah Jones, and many more come together in order raise the funds needed to bring the evidence-based Transcendental Meditation (TM) technique to 10,000 at-risk youth in Washington, D.C. through THEARC. PRESS HERE to download photos from the Silence The Violence benefit.
Kicking off the evening, singer-songwriter Jeremy Elliot performed his debut solo track “The Deep End” before DavidLynchFoundation CEO and renowned TM teacher BobRoth, News4 Today anchor EunYang, and THEARC CEO RahsaanBernard addressed the crowd (which included Ivanka Trump and Jared Kushner) and led them in a minute of silent mindfulness.
NorahJones captivated audiences with a stunning set that included “JustA Little Bit,” a cover of Neil Young’s “Don’t Be Denied,” “I’ve Got To See You Again,” and “Don’t Know Why.” Her set was followed by a soulful rendition of Bill Withers’ “Lean On Me” by the Celebration Gospel Choir. Bringing the audience to their feet, gospel and R&B icon Mavis Staples took the stage to a standing ovation and treated concert-goers to four songs supported by Rob Mathes’ Band, including “Change,” “Will The Circle Be Unbroken,” “TheWeight,” and her showstopping smash-hit , “I’ll Take You There,” that had D.C. dancing in the aisles.
Proceeded by BobRoth, RahsaanBernard, and Washington D.C Regional Director RenaBoon who spoke about the David Lynch Foundation and their work as a resident partner operating The Meditation Center at THEARC, Katy Perry brought the evening to a close with breathtakingly intimate, re-imagined versions of some of her biggest hits including “Roar” and “Wide Awake.” The audience was treated to one of the biggest surprises of the night when she played one of her most powerful anthems, “Rise,” live for only the second time ever since its 2016 release. Before she closed the night with an electrifying mash-up of the Edwin Hawkins Singers’ “OhHappyDay” paired with “Firework” and the Celebration Gospel Choir, she also led the room in singing “Happy Birthday” to Bob Roth.
“Mental health is the number one challenge we’re facing in our lifetime,” said Katy Perry. “I’ve had depression in the past, and I’ve used my music and meditation to combat it. Once you learn it, it never goes away. You’ll have it for the rest of your life. Whenever I’m in a funky mood or if I’m jetlagged or if I’m anxious – I’ll say just give me 20 minutes, and I will go deep and come back out a transformed person. I’m here tonight because I hope that we can give this tool [of meditation] to so many young people that are suffering.”
“The reason why we’re doing this is because no one really knows about it, and thanks to Mavis and Norah and Katy and so many others, we’re getting the word out,” said Bob Roth.
As the resident partner of (THEARC) West Campus in Washington D.C.’s Wards 7 and 8, the David Lynch Foundation has taught the Transcendental Meditation technique to over 500 people withinTHEARC Partners. Proceeds will help bring TM to vulnerable communities in the District through in-school and after school programs, churches and community centers, recovery programs, and detention centers in partnership with THEARC(Town Hall Education Arts Recreation Campus). Research has shown that TM reduces stress, heals PTSD, lowers substance abuse, improves academic performance and graduation rates, and reduces arrests for violent crime.
Previous David Lynch Foundation benefit concerts have included headliners such as Paul McCartney, Ringo Starr, Sting, Eddie Vedder, Ben Harper, Dixie Chicks, Sheryl Crow, Robert Plant, Hugh Jackman, Jerry Seinfeld, Jay Leno, Jim Gaffigan, and more.
About The David Lynch Foundation (DLF):Since 2005, the David Lynch Foundation, a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization, has helped to bring the stress-reducing Transcendental Meditation technique to more than 1 million children and adults around the world. They focus their efforts on underserved inner-city students; veterans with PTSD and their families; and women and children who are survivors of violence and abuse. In addition, DLF funds independent research to assess the effects of the program on academic performance, ADHD and other learning disorders, anxiety, depression, substance abuse, cardiovascular disease, post-traumatic stress disorder, and diabetes.
About the Town Hall Education Arts Recreation Campus (THEARC):Town Hall Education Arts Recreation Campus (THEARC) is a 16.5-acre, 110,000-square-foot combined cultural and social services campus in Washington, DC’s Ward 8. The campus, located at 1901 Mississippi Avenue, SE, consists of three connected buildings, playgrounds, basketball courts, and public space. In May 2007 THEARC won the Urban Land Institute’s Award for Excellence and was cited for its contribution to the community, response to societal needs, innovation, public/private partnership, and environmental protection and enhancement.
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*Photo Credit: Dave Barnhouser