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Sinatra: An American Icon Symposium at Monmouth University on May 9

Frank Sinatra, an icon who forever epitomizes the American dream continues to have an immeasurable influence on popular culture: music, film, art, theatre, fashion and beyond.  Monmouth University, in partnership with the GRAMMY Museum, the Frank Sinatra Family, and Frank Sinatra Enterprises, will celebrate Sinatra’s incredible achievements and commemorate the 100th anniversary of Sinatra’s birth with a day-long Sinatra Centennial symposium on May 9, from Noon to 4 p.m. in Wilson Hall. 

The Symposium will feature keynote speaker Bob Santelli, executive director of the GRAMMY Museum, rare film clips, screening of the Academy Award-winning short film “The House I live In,” performances by Monmouth University students, and panel discussions with Sinatra aficionados including Santelli, Max Weinberg, Southside Johnny, President of Virgil Films Joe Amodei and Monmouth University professors. 

In conjunction with the Symposium, the Sinatra photo exhibit featuring 38 framed images spanning Sinatra’s boyhood days in Hoboken to his final performances in the 1990s will be held in Pollak Gallery from 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. Included are rare and classic images from inside Sinatra’s Capitol Studios recording sessions, at home, at New Jersey’s Rustic Cabin roadhouse, on the road with the Hoboken Four, the Tommy Dorsey Orchestra, and, of course, Sinatra’s solo career.  Photographers include Ken Veeder, Sid Avery, and the legendary Herman Leonard, among others. The exhibit is free and open to the public.

“The Grammy Museum is delighted to work with our university affiliate, Monmouth University, in celebrating one of New Jersey’s greatest cultural treasures, Frank Sinatra.  The symposium will shed new light on a legend during this, the centennial of his birth, and introduce him to new fans in a unique and compelling way,” said Santelli.

The schedule for the day includes (subject the change):

Noon – Welcome by Monmouth University President Paul R. Brown

12:10-12:30 p.m. – Keynote by Bob Santelli, executive director of GRAMMY Museum

12:30-12:40 p.m. –  Sinatra 101 – The Essence of Frank Sinatra presented by Assistant Dean of the School of Humanities and Social Sciences Michael Thomas

12:40-1 p.m. – Performance by Monmouth University students Kellen Brennan (Keyboards), Connor Healy (Bass), Dino Marino (Sax), Liam Frank (Drums), and Nicole Govel (Vocals)

1-2 p.m. – Panel and Q & A: The Man, The Music, The Legend-Panelists include musicians Max Weinberg, Southside Johnny, Steve Forbert, and Mike Barris

2-2:45 p.m. – Somewhere Along the Way – Sinatra as a social activist by Bob Santelli and Max Weinberg with screening of the short film, “The House I Live In.”  The Academy Award winning film starring Sinatra, was made in 1945 to promote racial tolerance.

2:45-3:45 p.m. – Panel and Q & A: Nothing but the Best-Panelists include Associate Professor of Management and Decision Sciences Stu Rosenberg, Associate Professor of Communication Aaron Furgason, and Sinatra aficionados Joe Amore and Joe Amodei, president of Virgil Films. Rare film clips of Sinatra will be screened during the discussion.

3:45-3:55 p.m. – Performance by Monmouth University students

3:55 p.m. – Bob Santelli will briefly describe the Sinatra photo exhibit in the Pollak Gallery and invite conference attendees to tour the Gallery.

Symposium tickets are $10.  For more information, visit  or call 732-263-6889.