Benedetto Arts, LLC announced earlier this week the appointment of Excel Corporation, a publicly traded licensing and branding corporation, as the exclusive licensing agent on behalf of iconic personality, Tony Bennett. Benedetto Arts, LLC, owns the name and likeness rights for the singer Tony Bennett.
“Tony Bennett embodies integrity, quality and longevity in a way that is completely unique in any industry. He is an iconic entertainer and an acclaimed visual artist so we are honored to have this exceptional opportunity,” said Robert Stone, VP Licensing, of Excel Corporation. “Our goal will be to capture the true essence of this multi talented individual to include three components of Tony’s life: fashion, art and classic authentic food.”
Excel will be pursuing a variety of licensing opportunities that relate to Bennett’s entertainment career as well as his artistic endeavors as a painter who signs his work with his family name, “Benedetto.” Among areas of interest are fashion apparel and accessories, textiles for the home and kitchenware and food specialties. Bennett is in his seventh decade as a performer and has maintained a level of success and relevancy in the entertainment industry that is unmatched by any other performer. His most recent CD released in celebration of his 85th birthday, DUETS II, made music history when it debuted at #1 on the Billboard Album charts, making Tony the oldest artist to achieve the top slot. His multi-generational appeal is exhibited by his sold out concert performances around the globe attended by fans of every age. Bennett’s DUETS CDs showcased musical collaborations with today’s most successful artists representing the spectrum of musical genres, including Lady Gaga, Stevie Wonder, Paul McCartney, Faith Hill, and Andrea Bocelli, and have continued to introduce the songs he made famous throughout his career to an ever widening domestic and international audience, becoming his most successful recordings to date. A visual artist all his life, Tony studied art in public schools in New York City and has exhibited his extensive collection of original artwork in museums and galleries around the world. Three of his paintings are part of the permanent collection in the esteemed Smithsonian Institution in Washington, D.C.
About Tony Bennett
Tony Bennett is as a recording artist with over 100 albums and 17 Grammy Awards, including the Grammy Lifetime Achievement Award, and several Emmy Awards to his credit, and has earned his legendary status many times over. He remains the Columbia Records artist with the greatest longevity at the label. His recent DUETS CDs, released in 2006 and 2011 on the occasion of his 80th and 85th birthdays respectively, have showcased Bennett’s greatest hits performed with today’s greatest stars. A host of artists joined Bennett in the studio for the projects including Lady Gaga, Bono, Barbra Streisand, Carrie Underwood, Elton John and the late Amy Winehouse among many others. This year a documentary on the singer, created and conceived by Tony’s son and manager Danny Bennett, entitled “The Zen of Bennett” premiered at the Tribeca Film Festival 2012 to much acclaim. His 2007 prime-time special, “Tony Bennett: An American Classic,” won seven Emmy Awards and was directed by Academy Award winner Rob Marshall. He has performed for 10 US Presidents, from Presidents Eisenhower, Kennedy, Johnson, Carter, Reagan, Bush Sr, Clinton, Bush Jr. and Obama. He also worked with and marched alongside Martin Luther King in his 1965 civil rights march and was honored with the Martin Luther King’s Salute to Greatness Award. In addition to performing, he is a visual artist as well, with three of his original paintings featured in the permanent collection at the Smithsonian, including his portraits of Ella Fitzgerald and Duke Ellington. His humanitarian efforts are renowned and the United Nations honored him with their Humanitarian Award in 2007. He has published three books – his autobiography, “The Good Life,” and two books of his paintings, “Tony Bennett: What My Heart Has Seen,” and “Tony Bennett In the Studio: A Life of Art and Music.” Bennett founded, in association with the Department of Education in New York City, the Frank Sinatra School of the Arts – a public arts high school in his hometown of Astoria, Queens. With his wife Susan, he established Exploring the Arts, a charitable organization which supports arts education in NYC public high schools. Exploring the Arts supports 14 public high schools throughout New York City. For more information please visit www.tonybennett.com, exploringthearts.org and www.zenofbennett.com
Excel is a publicly traded licensing, merchandising, and distribution company, headed by Ruben Azrak, Chairman focused on brining national and international brands to the retail marketplace through licensing opportunities including the representation of brands, trademarks, designers, events, personalities and sports of high standing in the industry. Excel’s key executives have over 30 years of licensing experience and have established programs at retail which have generated sales of over one billion cumulative.