The Mattie Kelly Arts Foundation will pay tribute to the internationally renowned Louisiana artist and creator of the infamous Blue Dog series, George Rodrigue, from 6:30-10 p.m. Nov. 7. Hosted by the Hilton Sandestin Beach Golf Resort & Spa, this one-of-a-kind evening is part of a national tour for the 1913 Rodrigue Steinway “Blue Dog Piano,” which has been painted by the honoree himself.

The live concert will feature five acclaimed pianists performing on Steinway Grand as it celebrates its 100th birthday in 2013.  Performing artists include Sean Dietrich (Jazz), John Ripley (Rock ‘n Roll), David Seering (Broadway), Donnie Sundal (Hip Hip/Funk) and Bobby Van Duesen (Ragtime).  Visit for the history, restoration process and unveiling of bringing together the great works of both George Rodrigue and the Hall Piano Company of New Orleans.

 For this special celebration, Rodrigue and his wife, Wendy, will be in attendance and share intimate details about some of their latest projects. Hilton Chef John Carey will create an artistic presentation of culinary stations, allowing guests to comfortably meander through the Emerald Ballroom with complimentary wine served tableside. The cuisine will be complemented by Pastry Chef Yasha Becker’s signature creation, miniature baby grand pianos in dark chocolate filled with Grand Marnier Cream and assorted Blue Dog miniature pastries. 

Wine enthusiasts can add to their wine cellars while supporting MKAF and George Rodrigue Foundation charitable education missions through a “Wine Pull.” Private wine collectors, restaurants and patrons are donating wines that will be wrapped and tagged. Patrons may purchase numbered corks matching the mystery wine bottles ranging in value. The evening will conclude with a live auction, featuring private wine dinners in patron homes or restaurants with one of the featured Rodrigue Tribute pianists, a Louisiana Duck Hunting Trip, a New Orleans Getaway Package, a Rodrigue Print, and a CBS PGA Tour Package to name a few. 

Since 2011, the MKAF and GRF have enjoyed an arts alliance partnership to support youth development through art in education. MKAF and GRF share a joint mission to motivate and engage students through arts-infused and arts-integrated curriculum. Executive Director of MKAF, Marcia Hull said, “The artistic collaboration of our two foundations will bring awareness to the critical need to support arts education to students and special needs children and its positive impact on youth.” 

Tickets are now on sale for $150 per person or $135 for MKAF preferred member rate. Tables of eight are available to reserve. Advance reservations are required and tickets can be purchased online at or call the MKAF office at 850-650-2226.

Proceeds from the evening will benefit both MKAF and GRF cultural and educational missions. For more information, visit