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Wednesday, 10 January, 2001, 09:22 GMT
Stars come out for Bush party
Ricky Martin (l)
Ricky Martin (l) won best male artist at the MTV awards
Singer Ricky Martin tops a bill that includes Frasier star Kelsey Grammer and musician Van Morrison for the US presidential inauguration gala.

The event, to celebrate the election of George W Bush as president, will take place in Washington on 18 January.

Gala producer Gerry Schlatter told Variety magazine: "My focus is bringing America together.

Van Morrison
Van Morrison will be a contrast to Ricky Martin
"This is more a celebration of family and celebrating America and the spirit of coming together".

Courting celebrity has long been a feature of presidential celebrations, in an attempt to add an extra touch of glamour to the proceedings.

Ricky Martin is a Grammy award winning pop sensation responsible for La Vida Loca and She Bangs.

While Van Morrison is the Northern Irish musician best known for Moondance, Here Comes The Night and Brown Eyed Girl.

And Kelsey Grammer is the star of the multi-award winning TV comedy Frasier.

The event in front of the Lincoln Memorial will feature military bands, skydivers, fireworks, parades and other Hollywood celebrities and singers yet to be announced.

"While there will be plenty of spectacle, it's not about spectacle,'' Mr Schlatter said.

The event is a bi-partisan celebration, drawing celebrities and performers from across the political spectrum.

Comedian and novelist Ben Elton, known for his left-wing leanings, and Lord Lloyd-Webber will present songs from their West End musical The Beautiful Game at the event.

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See also:

09 Jan 01 | Entertainment
Musical gala for Bush
15 Dec 00 | Americas
Bush team gets keys to office
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