GRAMMYs On The Hill Awards To Honor Jennifer Hudson
The Recording Academy will present its 2013 GRAMMYs on the Hill Awards in Washington, D.C., on April 17 at the Hamilton. Known as "Washington's most interesting mix of music and politics," the event will honor GRAMMY and Academy Award winner Jennifer Hudson for her artistic achievements and generosity as a philanthropist.
"We are elated to recognize Jennifer Hudson as not only a gifted musician and actress but as an extraordinary humanitarian who has selflessly contributed her time and talent to numerous worthwhile causes," said Recording Academy President/CEO Neil Portnow. "She is one of the industry's most enduring, giving and gifted women, and we are privileged to be honoring her artistry, her commitment and her generosity."
The GRAMMYs on the Hill Awards will feature special guest presenters and performers, and will recognize Hudson with The Academy's Recording Artists' Coalition Award (named for The Academy's artists' rights program founded by Don Henley and Sheryl Crow). The event will include a cocktail reception and dinner preceding the awards ceremony, and will also thank key legislators who help improve the environment for music makers. Proceeds will benefit the GRAMMY Foundation's Signature Schools, which provides support for underserved music programs throughout the country, and a GRAMMY Foundation Signature School that has demonstrated excellence in music education will receive a grant to support its music initiatives. The evening is sponsored by SESAC.
The day after the Awards ceremony, The Recording Academy will host GRAMMYs on the Hill Advocacy Day, where hundreds of music professionals from across the country will visit with legislators to advance pro-music policies that improve the environment for music and its makers. Now in its eighth year, it is the music community's only annual advocacy day in Washington, and features a morning briefing with keynote speeches by leading legislators and lobbying members of Congress on Capitol Hill.
A GRAMMY-winning recording artist, Academy Award-winning actress and bestselling author, Hudson is an extraordinary talent. From humble beginnings, Hudson began singing in a small Chicago church where, week after week, she brought the congregation to its feet. From there, she's gone on to worldwide acclaim.
In 2007 Hudson won an Academy Award for her role as Effie in the smash hit Dreamgirls, an adaptation of the Broadway musical. Her breakout film performance also garnered her a Golden Globe Award, a Screen Actors Guild Award, a BAFTA, and an NAACP Image Award. She was also honored by the Broadcast Film Critics Association, the National Board of Review, and was named Entertainer of the Year at the Soul Train Awards.
Hudson also received an NAACP Image Award nomination in 2009 for her role in The Secret Life Of Bees, co-starred in the box-office hit Sex And The City, and was most recently seen in the Farrelly brothers' comedy The Three Stooges.
Hudson has made the same kind of impact in the world of music. In 2008, her debut self-titled album won a GRAMMY for Best R&B Album, which was presented by one of Hudson's idols, Whitney Houston. The RIAA gold-certified album entered the Billboard 200 at No. 2, marked the biggest first week sales for an R&B female entry since 2004, and has since sold more than 1.1 million albums worldwide to date. Most recently, she released her sophomore album, I Remember Me, in 2011, to rave reviews. The album debuted at No. 2 on the Billboard 200 and the R&B Albums charts, and has since been certified gold by the RIAA.
In 2009 Hudson, along with her sister Julia, founded the Julian D. King Gift Foundation in loving memory of her nephew and her sister's son Julian, who they lost in 2008. As a catalyst for change in children’s health, education and welfare, the Foundation exists to provide stability, support and positive experiences for children of all backgrounds so that they will become productive, confident and happy adults. The work of the foundation is carried out through fund raising events, the content and proceeds of which are used to support and encourage the positive development of children. Jennifer and Julia have thus far hosted four annual toy drives at Christmas for less fortunate children in the Chicago area as well as founding Hatch Day in 2011, an annual back-to-school supply drive, which takes place in August on Julian’s birthday, to ensure all children start their school year with the supplies they need.
Most recently, Hudson finished production on several feature films, all of which are expected to be released this year. She also filmed three episodes for a guest-starring arc on NBC's acclaimed series "Smash," which returned for its second season in February 2013. This spring, Hudson can also be seen in Lifetime's series of short films, Call Me Crazy, a follow-up to the critically acclaimed Five, an anthology on the impact of breast cancer.
Expanding her talents in the arts, Hudson added author and clothing designer to her list of talents in 2012. In January she published her inspirational bestselling memoir, I Got This: How I Changed My Ways, Found Myself And Lost Everything That Weighed Me Down, and then she launched her first clothing line, the Jennifer Hudson Collection, which debuted on QVC in September 2012. Additionally, Hudson has been the national spokesperson for Weight Watchers since 2010.