(NEW YORK) — Alicia Keys hosted Black Ball Redux Gala Thursday night at Harlem’s Apollo Theater, both to honor philanthropists such as Oprah Winfrey, and to raise money for an AIDS-free Africa and India — a cause dear to the New York native’s heart.
The annual fundraiser benefits the singer’s Keep a Child Alive foundation, which Alicia launched in 2003 to provide treatment and support to families affected by HIV/AIDS in Africa and India.
Keys had originally scheduled her ninth annual Keep a Child Alive’s Black Ball for Nov. 1, but it was postponed due to Superstorm Sandy. The 31-year-old singer told ABC News Radio on the red carpet that she was also personally affected by the storm.
“We did lose a lot of equipment, but that means nothing to people that lost their homes and lost their jobs,” she said.
Along with Winfrey, Grammy Award-winning singer/activist Angélique Kidjo was also honored during the ball, which featured performances by Keys, Jennifer Hudson, Bonnie Raitt and Brittany Howard of Alabama Shakes.
“I’m proud to celebrate two incredible powerhouse women. I’m proud to bring people on the stage that have never been together and perform quite in this way they will tonight,” Alicia said of the evening. “And I’m just really proud of Keep a Child Alive because this is a great accomplishment for me…it’s something that’s really important and special and I’m just really proud of it.”
Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio
Scott Stuntz, Teton Valley News
Brett Crandall, BYU-Idaho Communications