Legendary Dionne Warwick Announced as Grand Opening Gala Artist

Dionne Warwick

Six-time Grammy-winning singer Dionne Warwick brings her signature sounds to christen the new Scheidt Family Performing Arts Center at the University of Memphis Rudi E. Scheidt School of Music on Saturday, Feb. 4.


The Scheidt Center is a 20-year dream of the late Rudi and Honey Scheidt coming to fruition. The vision of having a world-class teaching and performing facility for students and the community will become a reality when the doors are opened on this state-of-the-art facility.


“We are thrilled for Grammy-winning icon Dionne Warwick to headline the historic opening of the Scheidt Family Performing Arts Center. Her multi-faceted career embodies everything we hope to see in our graduates,” said Dr. Kevin Sanders, director of the Rudi E. Scheidt School of Music. “The opportunity to perform alongside one of the music industry’s legendary singers promises a transformative moment for our students.”

Warwick has become a cornerstone of American pop music and culture for more than 60 years of her musical career. She is an established international music icon and concert act, earning 75 charted hit songs and selling more than 100 million records.


As a legendary vocalist, Warwick has celebrated a series of firsts, including being the first iconic female singer to win both pop and R&B Grammys on the same night and the first singer to crossover into pop music selling more than 100 million albums. She’ll be able to add another first when she graces the stage and delights the audience at the Scheidt Family Performing Arts Center at the Grand Opening Gala as she performs alongside the School of Music’s elite musicians.


“I’m looking forward to appearing with these brilliant musicians on Memphis’ newest stage and celebrating with everyone that evening,” said Warwick.


The Grand Opening Gala featuring Dionne Warwick benefits the Rudi E. Scheidt School of Music and promises an amazing performance and powerful philanthropy. Proceeds from this event will help purchase outstanding musical equipment and technology for the Scheidt Center and launch an instrument-lending program for students – upgrading the educational experience for the next generation of musicians, composers and music educators.


The event will feature a champagne toast and tour, dinner, and musical performances by world-renowned recording artist Dionne Warwick alongside the School of Music’s phenomenal student musicians. The evening will conclude with an after-party featuring The Bar-Kays.


For information about being a sponsor or attending the Scheidt Family Performing Arts Center Grand Opening Gala, please visit memphis.edu/scheidtcenter or email scheidtcenter@memphis.edu.


The Grand Opening Gala is a part of the Scheidt Family Performing Arts Center opening weekend which will also feature the inaugural Honey Music Fest – a free community festival featuring multiple performances throughout the Scheidt Center on Sunday, Feb. 5.


Event Details

What: Scheidt Family Performing Arts Center Grand Opening Gala featuring Dionne Warwick

Where: Scheidt Family Performing Arts Center, 3800 Central Ave., Memphis, TN 38111

When: Saturday, Feb. 4, 2023

How to Buy Tickets: memphis.edu/scheidtcenter


Warwick began singing professionally in 1961 after being discovered by the songwriting team of Burt Bacharach and Hal David. She had her first hit in 1962 with “Don’t Make Me Over.” Less than a decade later, she had released more than 18 consecutive Top 100 singles, including her classic Bacharach/David recordings, “Walk on By,” “Anyone Who Had a Heart,” “Message to Michael,” “Promises Promises,” “A House is Not a Home,” “Alfie,” “Say a Little Prayer,” “This Girl’s in Love With You,” “I’ll Never Fall in Love Again,” “Reach Out For Me,” and the theme from “Valley of the Dolls.” Warwick received her first Grammy Award in 1968 for her mega-hit, “Do You Know the Way to San Jose?” and a second Grammy in 1970 for the best-selling album, “I’ll Never Fall in Love Again.” In 1985, she reunited with Bacharach and longtime friends Gladys Knight, Elton John and Stevie Wonder to record the landmark song “That’s What Friends Are For,” which became a number-one hit record around the world and the first recording dedicated to raising awareness and major funds for the AIDS cause in support of AMFAR. Warwick was inducted into The Grammy Museum, where a special 50th-anniversary career exhibit was unveiled. As a Grammy Hall of Fame inductee, three of her songs — “Walk on By,” “Alfie” and “Don’t Make Me Over” — were also inducted into the organization’s hall of fame. In 2014, Warwick released a star-studded duets album entitled “Feels So Good,” featuring collaborations of her biggest hits re-done with some of today’s greatest artists.


Most recently, Warwick received the coveted and prestigious 2017 Marian Anderson Award for her career accomplishments and philanthropy. She was honored in a 2018 PBS Television Special, “Then Came You,” was named the 2019 Ambassador to the Smithsonian Institute’s Year in Music and is a 2019 Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award recipient.


Crowned the “Queen of Twitter” her presence on the social media platform has led to collaborations with Chance the Rapper, featured on Saturday Night Live skits and inspired an art show for the Newark Arts Festival featuring paintings, installations, collages, video and sculpture inspired by some of the Grammy winner’s most notable tweets.


Fans can enjoy an upcoming CNN Films’ award-winning documentary Dionne Warwick: Don’t Make Me Over, directed by Dave Wooley and David Heilbroner, which will premiere on CNN at 8 p.m. CT Sunday, Jan. 1, 2023.



The Scheidt Family Performing Arts Center will be equipped with world-class facilities supporting its role as the region’s largest and most comprehensive music school and serving as a stage for the performing arts throughout the community. The 82,000-square-foot Scheidt Center boasts state-of-the-art facilities, including the 900+ seat concert hall with expanded stage space and exceptional acoustics and the more intimate music hall seating 100 guests. The Scheidt Center also houses the largest educational sound stage in Tennessee allowing orchestras to perform movie and video game scores, accompanied by modern recording and production studios providing students with experiential learning opportunities.



The University of Memphis Rudi E. Scheidt School of Music offers bachelors through doctoral degrees in 29 areas of concentration making it the most comprehensive music school in the region. As Tennessee’s only doctoral degree-granting program in music, the School sets the tone for creativity and excellence for the next generation of musicians, composers and music educators. As a Research 1 University, the School of Music’s teaching and research are devoted to the preservation and growth of music as an art, a craft, a profession and a treasury of human wisdom.

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