Barbra Streisand’s hefty take for her New Year’s Eve and Jan. 1 gigs at the MGM Grand Hotel in Las Vegas will boast an additional $ 3.5 million donated to the singer’s favorite charities by a foundation established by the hotel’s owner, Kirk Kerkorian.
Streisand’s publicist Richard Guttman announced the donation from the Lincy Foundation as a “salute to her own fundraising accomplishments.”
The handout will grant funds to more than 15 orgs involved in AIDS research and black, Jewish and women’s causes.
“One of the reasons she holds Kirk Kerkorian in such esteem is his passionate philanthropy,” Guttman said. “That’s a lot of money. He’s a generous guy.”
Meantime, Streisand is preparing for the Vegas mega-event, which she is taping with Smith-Hemion Prods. for possible broadcast.
Streisand’s manager Marty Erlichman said offers from HBO and other companies are on the table, but the singer isn’t sure what she wants to do with the tape.
Erlichman said the concert is unlikely to be broadcast live on Friday or Saturday.
He added that Streisand is considering taking the show on tour after the concerts. “She has said that if she likes the experience she might tour,” he said.
The event is the singer’s first live non-charity concert performance in 27 years. Sources close to Streisand have pegged the figure for the two-night gig at $ 20 million.
While concert promoters and singers alike have gaped at the staggering sum, one MGM Grand source said the casino considers it a shrewd investment.
“They say they’re prepared to do over $ 100 million in gambling,” the source said. “I don’t think they’re in the habit of losing money.”
Initially, the $ 20 mil figure was linked to a live pay-per-view deal. But that deal was discarded when Streisand decided to tape it herself. Music industry sources claim the savvy warbler is getting closer to $ 6 mil-$ 8 mil.
Erlichman would neither confirm nor deny figures for the star, but he said any broadcast deal would be separate from her MGM Grand payment.
He also said the offers are among the highest ever made for this type of concert, including a reported $ 20 mil for Michael Jackson’s concert in Budapest that was broadcast on HBO.
“All of the deals that have been proposed are the highest deals ever proposed for anybody for this type of thing,” he said.
More than $ 2 million of the Lincy Foundation donation will go to AIDS research groups with grants of $ 500,000 headed to the American Foundation for AIDS Research, AIDS Project Los Angeles and the Gay Men’s Health Crisis. Donations of $ 100,000 are being given to the Pediatric AIDS Foundation, Lambda Legal Defense Fund, Gay and Lesbian Alliance Against Defamation, Hollywood Supports and Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS.
Other groups collecting cash include the NAACP Legal Defense Fund ($ 100,000) , Children’s Defense Fund ($ 100,000), Women’s Legal Defense Fund ($ 100,000), American Jewish Congress of Southern California ($ 100,000), Religious Action Center ($ 100,000), New Israel Fund ($ 200,000), Drew Child Care Development Corp. ($ 100,000) and the UCLA School of Medicine ($ 200,000) to set up a Streisand research fund in women’s cardiology.