Dan Gross: Seacrest to open The Voice project at Children's Hospital

Posted: July 14, 2011

"AMERICAN IDOL" host Ryan Seacrest will be at Children's Hospital of Philadelphia tomorrow to launch The Voice, a closed-circuit, multimedia center that his charitable foundation has funded.

The event is open only to the hospital's patients and their families.

The Voice, housed inside the main hospital's Colket Atrium, provides patients the ability to engage in activities related to radio, TV and new media, such as broadcasting like a DJ and playing songs, to watching performances and conducting interviews.

The Ryan Seacrest Foundation's first Voice location is at Children's Healthcare in Seacrest's hometown of Atlanta.

Chris May talks with Obama

CBS 3 anchor Chris May is at the White House today for a one-on-one interview with President Obama. The interview will air on the 5, 6, and 11 p.m. newscasts.

3 locals enter 'Hell'

Hatboro native Chino Chang credits former Eagles receiver Hank Baskett for making him try out for Fox's "Hell's Kitchen."

Chang, 39, head chef at Redstone Grill, in Marlton, where Baskett often dined, was selected for the show, which debuts at 8 p.m. Monday.

We asked Chang, an Upper Moreland High grad, if he had been the victim of any of chef/host Gordon Ramsay's profane outbursts, for which the show is famous. Yes, he was. "They're going to have to bleep out a lot," Chang said.

Chang said he wanted to "flip out and curse," but restrained himself.

Germantown native Monterray White joins Chang on the show. White, 34, studied at Bartram High and Philadelphia Regional High and says the murder of his older brother, Derrick Fowler, inspired him to go to culinary school. Fowler was in culinary school when he was killed and had advised White, who also loved to cook, to pursue culinary arts.

Now White works for Stephen Starr's catering division.

"I p----d him off a few times," White says of the explosive Ramsay. But White bit his tongue and says there should never be hard feelings in the kitchen.

White's hoping the show will help propel his catering business, which you can learn more about at keystocatering.com.

Lawndale native Gina Melcher, 34, had a different response when Ramsay yelled at her. The Northeast High grad, who now lives in Cape May Courthouse, said she had to stifle her laughter. "I thought it was funny," Melcher said of Ramsay's screaming. She's a restaurant consultant and is working on a cookbook.

The contestants are competing for the head chef job at Ramsay's BLT Steak in New York.

Bret Michaels on the Parkway

On Saturday, Bret Michaels and Poison play the Susquehanna Bank Center with Motley Crue and the New York Dolls, and on Sept. 18 Michaels will perform in front of the Art Museum after the Rock 'N' Roll Philadelphia Half Marathon, formerly known (for 32 years) as the Philadelphia Distance Run. The "Rock of Love" star plays at the finish line.

For info on the run, or to register visit Competitor.com.

Father Guido's A.C. gigs

Father Guido Sarducci performs with Joe Piscopo at Club Piscopo at Resorts Atlantic City.

Piscopo and Sarducci's alter ego, Don Novello, are both "SNL" veterans. They'll play Piscopo's new club tonight through Sunday and, as you might imagine, Father Sarducci is flying in from the Vatican for the occasion.

Novello tells us that he's always respected Piscopo's work and that "if it wasn't for him and Eddie Murphy - they were the stars - they probably would have canceled the show." It turns out that smoking laws sometimes prevent the chain-smoking-priest character from lighting up at his own shows.

Other funny business . . .

Comedian Dom Irrera turned up at 610 WIP host Big Daddy Graham's quizzo night last Wednesday at the Crest Tavern in Wildwood Crest, and finished second from last. Big Daddy will next perform with Joe Conklin at their Two Funny Philly Guys show at the Wildwood Catholic Auditorium Aug. 13. Tix available at bigdaddygraham.com.

McGillin's rock reunion

Riff Raff, a local band from the 1970s, will reunite Saturday for a private party to celebrate the 32nd anniversary of guitarist Jay Dutill and his wife, Betty.

Fittingly, the show is upstairs at McGillin's Olde Ale House (1310 Drury), where the former Betty Murray met Dutill in 1977. The couple won a contest that McGillin's had on Valentine's Day of couples who met or got engaged there.

The Dutills had to laugh when their four kids recently came home after a night on the town and told them about a cool bar that they had discovered - McGillin's.

Visit PhillyGossip.com for Dan's latest updates or follow @PhillyGossip on Twitter. Have a tip? Call 215-854-5963, or email grossd@phillynews.com. For recent columns, visit www.philly.com/

DanGross.

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