Twin daughters of music legend Nat King Cole, Timolin and Casey Cole of Boca Raton, launched Nat King Cole Generation Hope, Inc. to honor the legacy, music and life of their father Nat King Cole in 2008 after learning of budget cuts in public schools directly affecting the arts. Since that time, donations in excess of $66,000 have benefited more than 5,000 children with “the greatest need and fewest resources” in Miami-Dade, Broward and Palm Beach counties.
“Our family history is one of musical excellence and charitable giving,” said Timolin Cole. “Our father was a trailblazer in the music industry and will live forever through his style, grace and unforgettable music. Our mother Maria, also an entertainer, sang with Duke Ellington and was known for supporting multiple causes throughout her life. By giving students the opportunity to enhance their musical talents and abilities, our family’s legacy lives on.”
Casey Cole added that “In keeping with that legacy, the concert will showcase generations of musical greatness, including performances by our sister Natalie Cole, students from the Nat King Cole Generation Hope Summer Strings Camp, and local teen performance artists Andrew Foreman and Zoe Fromer.”
“We believe that every child should be exposed to music education,” continued Timolin. “Studies prove that participation in school music has a positive impact on areas considered outside the realm of music including dexterity, coordination, self-discipline, self-esteem, thinking skills, listening skills, and personal expression.”
This past summer 105 students from 7 Title 1 Palm Beach County schools were transported to Lynn University in Boca Raton to attend the inaugural Nat King Cole Generation Hope, Inc. Summer Strings at Lynn University, a camp that provided elementary students without means an opportunity to receive the highest quality string instruction. Nat King Cole Generation Hope, Inc., the School District of Palm Beach County and Lynn University Conservatory of Music worked together to make this week-long program happen with Nat King Cole Generation Hope, Inc. funding the cost of running the camp, the school district providing transportation and lunches for the campers and the university donating the space. Students received small group section instruction and private lessons with Lynn’s conservatory students serving as their mentors. The week-long camp culminated in a concert performed in the Keith C. and Elaine Johnson Wold Performing Arts Center.
“Plans are currently underway to expand the camp program next year based on fundraising from this GENERATIONS Concert,” noted Casey. “While giving has been predominantly in Palm Beach County, the organization has supported programs in Broward and Miami-Dade Counties with a goal to replicate successful programs, like our recent Summer Strings opportunity, across the country.”
The GENERATIONS concert event begins at 7:00 p.m. with a reception hosted by Celebrity Cruises featuring music performed by students from the Lynn Conservatory of Music and an ensemble of children they mentored during Nat King Cole Generation Hope Summers Strings and a silent auction that will include a 4-foot x 3-foot original painting of Nat King Cole by Salvatore Principe, a vintage handbag from the private collection of Maria Cole, wife of Nat King Cole and mother of the Cole sisters, Natalie, Timolin and Casey; and a limited edition print of the legendary artists who performed and recorded "We Are The World", including Michael Jackson, Quincy Jones, and Diana Ross with each artist's signature and portrait, along with the musical score of the song. At 8:00 p.m. the attendees will enjoy music from the talented, local youth performers followed by the performance by headliner Natalie Cole.
VIP tickets priced at $350 include premier seating, open bar at the Celebrity Cruises pre-concert reception, a private meet-and greet with performers, and post-event dessert reception; Donor tickets priced at $150 include priority seating and two drink tickets for the Celebrity Cruises pre-concert reception; and General Admission tickets priced at $75 with cash bar at Celebrity Cruises pre-concert reception are available, but limited.
GENERATIONS Concert sponsors include Silver Sponsor Celebrity Cruises; Bronze Sponsors Allied Health Institute and West Boca Medical Center; Patron Sponsor Florida Power & Light; Partners Boca Raton Bridge Hotel, Cruisin-America, Kaye Communications, Inc., Lynn University and SmartCruiser.com;
The mission of Nat King Cole Generation Hope, Inc., a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization, is to provide music education to children with the greatest need and fewest resources. It is accomplished by funding programs that provide for instruction, mentoring and resources. Nat King Cole Generation Hope, Inc. accepts grant applications throughout the year, which are reviewed by its Board of Directors and grants are awarded twice yearly based on the merit of application and availability of funds. Organization board members include Timolin Cole, president; Casey Cole, vice president; Robin Coven - Levin HomeCare; Rainford Knight - Florida Institute of Finance, LLC; Toni Mastrullo - Telecom Resources of America, Inc.; Sharon Gordon Mullane, Esq.; Thais Piotrowski – Ameriprise and Milana Walter.
GENERATIONS Concert sponsors include Platinum Sponsor Patriot National Insurance Group; Silver Sponsor Celebrity Cruises; Bronze Sponsors Allied Health Institute, Excel Services Corporation and West Boca Medical Center; Patron Sponsors Florida Power & Light and Global Tower Partners; Partners Boca Raton Bridge Hotel, Cruisin-America, Kaye Communications, Inc., Lynn University and SmartCruiser.com;
To purchase benefit concert tickets visit natkingcolefoundation.org/