January 23, 2009

The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences has announced the nominees for the 81st Annual Academy Awards®, which will take place on February 22, 2009.  Although far from Hollywood, the city of Charlotte will join in the festivities with an Oscar Night® America party on the stage of the Blumenthal Performing Arts Center’s Belk Theater. This event will benefit The Charlotte Symphony Orchestra, which is the only symphony orchestra in the country to host such an event. 

Nominations were awarded in 24 categories.  Some of the most notable nominations include Heath Ledger’s nomination for The Dark Knight. Yesterday’s nomination for Performance by an Actor in a Supporting Role marked the one-year anniversary of Mr. Ledger’s death.  Mr. Ledger’s final film, The Dark Knight was nominated for a total of 8 categories, including Achievement in Makeup, Achievement in Visual Effects, and Achievement in Film Editing.

Nominees for Best Motion Picture of the Year include: The Curious Case Of Benjamin Button, Frost/Nixon, Milk, The Reader, and Slumdog Millionaire. The Curious Case of Benjamin Button received 13 nominations, the most for any film this year, including Brad Pitt for Best Actor in a Leading Role and Achievement in Cinematography.

Jennifer Foster of WDAV and Sean O’Connell of The Charlotte Weekly will discuss these and other nominees throughout the Charlotte Symphony’s Oscar Night® America party, providing interesting insights and insider points of view on the award winners.

Live entertainment, a sumptuous array of food, a wine tasting from The Wine Shop, balloon pop contests with Carolina Panthers players, a live auction, and unique door prizes will add to the evening’s fun.

Tickets are $75 per person and are available at or by calling 704-972-2000.