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The Motown Sound: In Performance at the White House

A PBS music special in the East Room of the White House.  President and Mrs. Obama hosted the event on Thursday, February 24 in celebration of Black History Month and the legacy of Motown, the distinctive soul-infused pop music sound, style and presentation that was born in Detroit and embodied by the Motown Records label.  The evening included program host Jamie Foxx and performances by Foxx, Natasha Bedingfield, Sheryl Crow, the group Gloriana, Nick Jonas, Ledisi, John Legend, Amber Riley, Smokey Robinson, Mark Salling, Seal and Jordin Sparks.  (Program subject to change.)  The sixty-minute television special, part of the Emmy Award-nominated PBS “In Performance at the White House” series, will premiere Tuesday, March 1 at 8 p.m. ET on WETA Television and PBS stations nationwide.  (Check local listings.)

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Natasha Bedingfield, Jordin Sparks, and Ledisi perform in the East Room at “The Motown Sound: In Performance at the White House,” a concert celebrating Black History Month and the legacy of Motown Records.  Taped February 24, 2011; broadcasts March 1 at 8 p.m. ET on PBS stations nationwide.

Credit: Official White House Photo by Chuck Kennedy.

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Martha and the Vandellas, one of the most successful groups of the Motown-era, pictured here in 1964.  The legacy of Motown will be the subject of the music special “The Motown Sound: In Performance at the White House.”  Tapes February 24, 2011; broadcasts March 1 at 8 p.m. ET on PBS stations nationwide.

Credit: Courtesy of Motown Archives

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John Legend performs in the East Room at “The Motown Sound: In Performance at the White House,” a concert celebrating Black History Month and the legacy of Motown Records.  Taped February 24, 2011; broadcasts March 1 at 8 p.m. ET on PBS stations nationwide.

Credit: Official White House Photo by Chuck Kennedy.

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Smokey Robinson and Sheryl Crow perform  in the East Room at “The Motown Sound: In Performance at the White House,” a concert celebrating Black History Month and the legacy of Motown Records.  Taped February 24, 2011; broadcasts March 1 at 8 p.m. ET on PBS stations nationwide.

Credit: Official White House Photo by Chuck Kennedy.

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Stevie Wonder  performs in the East Room at “The Motown Sound: In Performance at the White House,” a concert celebrating Black History Month and the legacy of Motown Records.  Taped February 24, 2011; broadcasts March 1 at 8 p.m. ET on PBS stations nationwide.

Credit: Official White House Photo by Pete Souza.

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Amber Riley performs in the East Room at “The Motown Sound: In Performance at the White House,” a concert celebrating Black History Month and the legacy of Motown Records.  Taped February 24, 2011; broadcasts March 1 at 8 p.m. ET on PBS stations nationwide.

Credit: Official White House Photo by Chuck Kennedy.

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Mark Salling performs in the East Room at “The Motown Sound: In Performance at the White House,” a concert celebrating Black History Month and the legacy of Motown Records.  Taped February 24, 2011; broadcasts March 1 at 8 p.m. ET on PBS stations nationwide.

Credit: Official White House Photo by Chuck Kennedy.

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Stevie Wonder  performs in the East Room at “The Motown Sound: In Performance at the White House,” a concert celebrating Black History Month and the legacy of Motown Records.  Taped February 24, 2011; broadcasts March 1 at 8 p.m. ET on PBS stations nationwide.

Credit: Official White House Photo by Chuck Kennedy.

IPWH-Motown-Concert-Ledisi

Ledisi performs in the East Room at “The Motown Sound: In Performance at the White House,” a concert celebrating Black History Month and the legacy of Motown Records.  Taped February 24, 2011; broadcasts March 1 at 8 p.m. ET on PBS stations nationwide.

Credit: Official White House Photo by Chuck Kennedy.

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President Barack Obama makes remarks in the East Room during “The Motown Sound: In Performance at the White House,” a concert celebrating Black History Month and the legacy of Motown Records.  Taped February 24, 2011; broadcasts March 1 at 8 p.m. ET on PBS stations nationwide.

Credit: Official White House Photo by Chuck Kennedy.

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Nick Jonas performs in the East Room at “The Motown Sound: In Performance at the White House,” a concert celebrating Black History Month and the legacy of Motown Records.  Taped February 24, 2011; broadcasts March 1 at 8 p.m. ET on PBS stations nationwide.

Credit: Official White House Photo by Chuck Kennedy.

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Gloriana (Tom Gossin, Mike Gossin, Rachel Reinert and Cheyenne Kimball) perform in the East Room at “The Motown Sound: In Performance at the White House,” a concert celebrating Black History Month and the legacy of Motown Records.  Taped February 24, 2011; broadcasts March 1 at 8 p.m. ET on PBS stations nationwide.

Credit: Official White House Photo by Chuck Kennedy.

IPWH-Motown-Concert-MedleyMen

Jamie Foxx, Nick Jonas, Seal and John Legend perform in the East Room at “The Motown Sound: In Performance at the White House,” a concert celebrating Black History Month and the legacy of Motown Records. Taped February 24, 2011; broadcasts March 1 at 8 p.m. ET on PBS stations nationwide.

Credit: Official White House Photo by Chuck Kennedy.

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Berry Gordy joins in the finale at in the East Room at “The Motown Sound: In Performance at the White House,” a concert celebrating Black History Month and the legacy of Motown Records. Taped February 24, 2011; broadcasts March 1 at 8 p.m. ET on PBS stations nationwide.

Credit: Official White House Photo by Pete Souza.

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