Clay Aiken and Assorted Hobbies

Saturday, October 27, 2007

Solitaire sung by Clay Aiken

Neil Sedaka was honored last night, October 26, 2007, in New York City. There were many wonderful performers singing Neil's songs. One of the singers who brought the house down was Clay Aiken. In 2003, Clay Aiken performed Neil's Solitaire on American Idol.



This performance brought Neil to tears.



I would not have expected Clay to be able to improve on Solitaire but last night shows he has.

video


All I can say is WOW!


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Friday, October 19, 2007

The True Measure of a Man

ABC News has an interesting article about celebrities helping to draw attention to humanitarian organizations needs around the world.
Paris to Rwanda: Socialite Becomes Latest Star Hitched to Charity

There is some great information about UNICEF & Clay Aiken, one of the UNICEF ambassadors. Clay Aiken is an Ambassador for Education.

The article does question whether celebrity charity activists have ulterior motives & it uses Paris Hilton's upcoming trip to Rwanda. Whatever her motivation is remains to be seen but it's obvious what Clay Aiken's motivations are from the many quotes in the article.



Clay Aiken's first trip for UNICEF. Banda Aceh several months after tsunami.


"Celebrities have the ear and attention of the public," said Szarkowski (Lisa Szarkowski heads the ambassador program for Unicef). "They tend to command more attention than talking heads from our organization."

Attention that leads to big bucks. Aiken asked fans to donate money to Unicef to help the children in Lebanon and raised more than $75,000 in 24 hours.

So getting involved in causes may help celebrities draw attention to a specific need in some other part of the world as well as get their names in the spotlight -- but just how involved are they?

UNICEF sets high standards for their celebrity ambassadors
It's not easy to be selected as a Unicef ambassador. The group sets high standards for celebrities to live up to.

"In terms of becoming an ambassador, it's definitely a process," said Szarkowski. "We like to work with people who are committed to the cause and the mission and to align themselves with us for the long term."

Aiken made the cut when he was named a Unicef ambassador in 2004. The organization approached Aiken after hearing of his involvement with his own charity, the Bubel/Aiken foundation that helps young people with special needs.

Aiken said he felt obligated to help those in need.

"One of the most important responsibilities that you have if you're answering to the public is that you try to use that position in a way that serves the people you're trying to entertain," said Aiken. "I think you have a responsibility when you realize you have kids watching you. ... You can set an example to have kids doing drugs, or you can set an example to have kids helping their communities or their world."

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Clay Aiken's trip to Uganda for UNICEF


UNICEF preparations for trips. They are not just photo-ops.
Despite some common misconceptions, celebrity representatives don't just jet set off for a photo-op; they prepare for months before taking a trip.

"We prepare them pretty well," said Szarkowski. "People don't become ambassadors or supporters of ours unless they go through a process of learning about us and engaging with us."

Celebrities sit through classes to learn about Unicef and all the various issues that threaten children's survival around the world.

"We study as much as we possibly can before we go," said Aiken. "And I study after I go, because I want to be an expert on it. I think it's a disservice to the country you're going to and the children you're trying to help if you don't know what's going on and can't speak knowledgably about your experience.'

Aiken said the preparation is necessary in order to meet with health ministers and other officials on these trips.

"It wouldn't behoove anyone if we just went in to take pictures and came back," said Aiken. "The goal of all these visits and the reason we sit through extremely long sessions sometimes is so when we come back we know what we're talking about."

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Uganda Night Commuters.


Where do the celebrities stay?
Aiken didn't know what to expect during his first visit to Uganda. He walked into the minimalist community center, where he expected nobody to know his name. Suddenly, he was greeted with bows from the crowd.

"When we walked in, they kept calling me your excellency," laughed Aiken. "I think both visits we've been on there have been misconceptions about how important I am."

All joking aside, no matter how famous -- or infamous -- a celebrity is, celebrity support is essential.

But with so many problem areas across the globe, how do celebrities decide which country they want to visit? For most, the decision is made based on where the greatest need is at that time.

"The celebrities we work with want to go where they can be most helpful," said Szarkowski. "We're fortunate to have that caliber of people who basically say to us, 'Tell me where you want me to go.'"

In her eight years at Unicef, she said she's never had a celebrity refuse to go where they were asked to go. And the places they're asked to go certainly don't come with luxe accommodations.

"It's usually a tent somewhere.That's our standard accommodation," said Szarkowski.

In Afghanistan giving a baby a polio vaccine.


Who pays for celebrity ambassador trips?


Aiken and others pay their own way when they travel on behalf of Unicef. However, once they reach their destination, they don't have the need for many expenses. Most nights they're sleeping in tents on the ground.

In addition to the bare bones travel accommodations, celebrities must cope with extremely dangerous situations. In order to avoid conflict, Prendergast said every minute detail of the trip must be mapped out.

"These trips have to be planned very well to ensure maximum impact and security," said Prendergast.

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Clay Aiken answers why he only supports his own foundation & UNICEF publicly.
But, Aiken cautions, a focus on one organization or charity is important to the public.

"I get requests from every organization to come and do this or that," said Aiken. "It's not that I don't have a passion for kids with cancer, because I do. I feel like you can dilute your message if you talk about too many things."


Clay's bottom line
"I look to Angelina Jolie as a prime example of someone who is doing an amazing job," said Aiken. "She really has a passion and she goes in and makes a point to educate herself about what's going on and that's the only way to do it."


Whatever one believes about Angelina Jolie she is obviously passionate about her work with UNICEF and has been for years. I see Clay Aiken as following her good example.

Excerpts from:
Paris to Rwanda: Socialite Becomes Latest Star Hitched to Charity
How Involved Are Celebrity Charity Activists, and Do They Have Ulterior Motives?
By BLAIR SODEN
Oct. 19, 2007


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Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Clay Aiken to Make Broadway Debut in Monty Python's Spamalot


Playbill News

Clay Aiken to Make Broadway Debut in Monty Python's Spamalot



By Ernio Hernandez 16 Oct 2007

Clay Aiken joins the cast of Spamalot.


"American Idol" finalist Clay Aiken is scheduled to join the Broadway cast of the Tony Award-winning musical Monty Python’s Spamalot in the role of Sir Robin.


Aiken will be making his Broadway debut in the role originated on Broadway by David Hyde Pierce. His stint begins Jan. 18, 2008, and is scheduled to continue through May 4.


"Clay Aiken is amazing beyond that glorious voice. Turns out he is an excellent comic actor and a master of character," said director Mike Nichols in a release. "People will be surprised by his wide ranging talent, since the first impression is of great country charm and a singer to remember. This guy is not only a star, he is a lot more. We are lucky to get him for Spamalot."


Aiken — who was bested by Ruben Studdard during the second season of "American Idol" — has gone on to sell more than 6 million albums, co-author a best selling book ("Learning to Sing: Hearing the Music in Your Life") and play six sold-out concert tours. He was a focus of the short-lived Off-Broadway musical Idol: The Musical and has appeared on "Ed," "Saturday Night Live" and "Scrubs."


Monty Python's Spamalot, which celebrated its 1,000th performance Aug. 9, opened at Broadway's Shubert Theatre on March 17, 2005, following previews from Feb. 14.
Mike Nichols ("The Graduate," "Angels in America") directed and Casey Nicholaw (The Drowsy Chaperone) choreographed the show that was inspired by the 1975 feature film comedy "Monty Python and the Holy Grail."


The musical tells the tale of King Arthur and his Knights of the Round Table on their quest from God for the Holy Grail - with a short stop in the dazzling Spam-filled land of Camelot.
Spamalot earned the 2005 Tony Award for Best Musical and took home honors for direction (Mike Nichols) and one of its stars (Sara Ramirez). The musical still plays on Broadway at the Shubert Theatre and currently enjoys runs in London, Las Vegas and a national tour. An Australian production is slated to play Melbourne in November.


For information on all Spamalot incarnations, visit montypythonsspamalot.com.

Buy tickets through telecharge



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Monday, October 08, 2007

Hoax perpetuated against Clay Aiken

In a recent article published by a tabloid journal it was claimed that John Paulus never recanted his story about Clay Aiken. This is absolutely untrue. In the spirit of fair and complete journalistic reporting I am presenting proof that John Paulus actually did recant his fable about Clay Aiken:
I'd be willing to have a press conference admitting that this was all a lie and that Clay and I never met nor did he ever solicit me for sex and that as far as I know he is straight.

Are you saying Clay is not gay? And the evidence they had, was that Clay with a man or a woman? And where did you get your inside information? Like before going on GMA in Sept. that he was on meds?

When we started the blog there were people who disliked Clay's saying that LA had rotting guts and they were willing to share information on Clay. Clay pissed off some powerful people by not playing ball.

Percocet is just a numb front person. It's the others on there that are behind this whole thing. When I had my blog I would occassionally post and that's why you say different styles and why it appeared on was on all night. There are a group of 8 people. I was recuited back in July of 2005 from bigmuscle.com. They saw me there and that I was muscular, attractive, and from NC. and persuaded me to help them. So we worked out this scheme over 6 months and put it into place going over ever detail. I even took 3 prior lie detector test so that I could pass one by any media that gave me one.

Oh what about the cumrag? Used a prop.

And the cell phone calls? They were calls made by "haters" to my phone.

And the hotel room? There was really a room 207 and I really did check in and I did walk with someone into the room.

So who is revoles?

I am told that it's a guy with a close connection to 3 of these women. I do know that he is rich.

Were you paid?

My only compensation was that they would get me in touch with Lucas to do porno.

He did all this for a shot with Michael Lucas.

And all my bills paid for an entire year. Why do you think I had to start working again in December?

So, why after you were put in contact with Lucas... did the porno and hated it, did you continue the lie? Was it because of the contract with Lucas and your image as the 'guy who had sex with Clay Aiken'??

Because Claymates pissed me off and it was fun messing with them. I sort of forgot about Clay in the mix not until he called did I connect with him as a real person.

On Sept 28 2007, Paulus admitted that he had not spoken to the real Clay Aiken. He was fooled by an impostor and blogged about the fact that all of his saved Instant Messenger transcripts were with a Fake Clay.
Some may think that I am disappointed to learn that the person I was communicating with for nearly a year turned out to not to be Clay Aiken. I am not. I was greatly relieved to have learned that Clay Aiken and Ms. Parker were NOT using some single mother in order to manipulate me and the fans. It would have been easier for me to ignore the truth and to continue to post IM conversations from "Clay Aiken", but I would have compromised my integrity as a person. I will readily stand before you and admit that these perpetrators have fooled me as well as many fans than to continue to publish conversations which I have now learned weren't with Clay Aiken. My apologies to all those that were affected and I hope that the person(s) responsible will be sought out, found, and prosecuted.

In your e-mails to Perc, where you call him a pathological liar and so many other bad things, what was that all about?

That Jonahcruise@yahoo.com email is access by more than just me. I wasn't the one who sent those to her.

I have admitted that this was all a lie and that Clay and I never had sex. What's the problem. Time to move on. Clay has been a victim of a really evil scheme and I know that he is grateful for having such devoted fans who always believed in him. It's over Perc. The Claymates and Clay have both won. I hope they will forgive me for playing along with this ruse as Clay has.

Perc-
You want me to name names, but I have family I need to be protective of. IF these people are crazy enough to destroy Clay, then imagine what they might do to my family if I start naming names. The only protection I have is threatening to take them to the police.
They already know where your family is jackass.

I won't reveal who you guys are, If you just leave them alone then.

I knew you wouldn't name the names, John. Anytime I call you on ANYTHING you never come through. Real stand up guy. (rolls-eyes)

Why did you emerge here all of a sudden. I thought you were DONE with me? Something to hide or should I say protect? It's over with. I'm not playing. Leave Clay and his fans be and just enjoy Kelly and Ruben.

Percocet is a victim of the "haters" influences. When I started defending Clay they became unhinged. Clay and I never met nor have we ever had sex. To my knowledge he is straight or bi curious. I will share more about this scheme put together by posters on the 411 over the weekend.



I've called my friend at the N.E. He is very interested in hearing this was all a hoax. He will be contacting you tomorrow!

Great, I'd be more than willing to share.

And then, just last week he LIED to the National Enquirer.

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