Category Archives: Harvey Bell

Friars Club Adopt-A-Scholar Program for Aspiring Entertainers

A graduate of Texas A & M University and longtime New Jersey resident, Harvey Bell holds a master of business administration in finance. Harvey Bell has more than 35 years of professional experience as well as diverse philanthropic interests that include support of the Friars Club.

Established in 1904, the Friars Club upholds a commitment to brotherhood and camaraderie among entertainers. In addition to hosting annual celebrity “roasts,” the members-only organization operates a charitable arm, the Friars Club Foundation, which supports arts and education through its Adopt-A-Scholar program.

Since 2007, Adopt-A-Scholar has awarded four-year scholarships to students aspiring to careers in the performing arts. Adopt-A-Scholar provides $3,000 annually to support the next generation of artists and entertainers, with the goal of building capital to continue the scholarship program for years to come. To date, the Friars Club Foundation has provided financial support to help more than 360 students attend theater programs in liberal arts schools including Fordham University, New York University, Columbia University, and Brooklyn College.

Early History of the Friars Club Roasts

Harvey Bell, a longtime resident of New Jersey, is actively involved in several New York-based organizations. One of the more well-known groups to which Harvey Bell possesses a membership is the legendary New York Friars Club.

Started as an informal gathering for New York press agents, the Friars Club quickly gained popularity among celebrities, Broadway stars, and other industry insiders. In 1950, comedians Joe E. Lewis and Sam Levison were the first targets of the club’s legendary roasts, a private event where the guests of honor are mercilessly ridiculed by their closest friends.

While the club followed the motto, ‘We only roast the ones we love,’’ many of the jokes involved taboo topics and crude language. Due to the vulgar nature of the roasts, women were not allowed to attend until 1988, though actress Phyllis Diller managed to sneak into a 1983 roast dressed as a man.

Eventually, the private roasts involving famous names attracted the attention of the public. Between 1998 and 2002, the club’s annual roasts were aired on the cable network Comedy Central. Some of the most high profile guests of honor included Hugh Heifner and Jerry Stiller.

About the Friars Club’s Celebrity Roast

Harvey Bell - Friars Club

Harvey Bell is a longtime New Jersey resident who enjoys the music of Frank Sinatra and follows the New York Knicks in his spare time. In addition to these endeavors, Harvey Bell belongs to the Friars Club. A members-only organization for the entertainment community and those pursuing other career paths, the Friars Club fosters social and professional relationships and hosts various luncheons, honorary dinners, and other activities.

One of its hallmark events is the Celebrity Roast, a public event wherein top entertainment- industry names make unrestrained yet comedic barbs at the guest of honor. A raucous tradition, the event is filled with witty remarks. Since its inception more than a century ago, the event has brought laughter and enjoyment to guests and audiences alike. Furthermore, the Friars Club ensures that it upholds the event’s motto: “We only roast the ones we love.” Guests have included an assortment of celebrity figures beloved by the club, including individuals such as Bruce Willis, Whoopi Goldberg, Quentin Tarantino, Jack Black, and Lucille Ball, among many others.

Three Fun Facts about Frank Sinatra

 

Frank Sinatra pic
Frank Sinatra
Image: biography.com

A longtime resident of New Jersey, Harvey Bell holds a master of business administration from Texas A&M University. Beyond his professional pursuits, Harvey Bell enjoys listening to music, including songs by famous singer-songwriter Frank Sinatra. While many people know Sinatra was a great singer, these little-known facts about Ol’ Blue Eyes reveal new sides to the iconic crooner.

Frank Sinatra’s explosive fan base resulted in part from a hype campaign by his publicist, George Evans. Evans paid girls $5 to scream in the audience as Sinatra performed to create a frenzied atmosphere.

Sinatra was named a communist sympathizer by Senator Joe McCarthy and the House Un-American Activities Committee for his role in the short film “The House I Live In,” in which he tells several bullies to stop picking on a Jewish student.

One of Sinatra’s favorite haunts is still open for business. Located in Santa Monica, Chez Jay is a historic dive bar where the Rat Pack–the famous group that included Peter Lawford, Dean Martin, Sammy Davis Jr., and Sinatra–used to hang out. It is still open for business seven days a week.