Just on Day One alone, the Democratic National Convention seems to be drawing a bigger slate of stars than last week’s entire Republican lineup. While Donald Trump brought corporate executives and casino moguls to Cleveland, Hillary Clinton is bringing Hollywood to Philadelphia.
Opening the night was a musical act, R&B group Boyz II Men, who were the third artists ever to replace themselves at the top of the Billboard Hot 100 charts. They also have one of the best-selling albums ever released by a R&B group. And yes, “Dancing with the Stars” fans like them too, after tenor Wanya Morris placed fourth in the show’s 22nd season.
Singer Demi Lovato performed later Monday evening, after talking about her struggle with addiction and mental illness. Lovato, who sang her hit “Confidence,” has proved to have incredible staying power in television shows and movies since her debut as a child actress on “Barney & Friends.”
Lovato is part of the night’s “Combating Substance Abuse” section — notably, she went to rehab in 2010 for depression, bulimia, and drug and alcohol abuse. She is also a gay rights advocate.
In the “Ensuring Equality” portion, former NBA players Jason and Jarron Collins took the stage. Compare them with Trump’s athlete speaker: Fran Tarkenton, a quarterback for the Minnesota Vikings and the New York Giants, and a Monday Night Football commentator and television personality. He retired in 1978, the same year that the Collins twins were born.
Both brothers began their professional basketball careers in 2001 and both retired in 2014. Jarron Collins is currently as assistant coach for the Golden State Warriors.
Comedian Sarah Silverman, who is slated to speak between 8 p.m. and 10 p.m., has two Emmy Awards and is still one of the country’s top comedians after launching her career on NBC’s “Saturday Night Live” in 1993. Another SNL alum will follow: Minnesota Sen. Al Franken.
Musical legend Paul Simon performed “Bridge Over Troubled Water” after Silverman and Franken, and was followed by Eva Longoria.
While much of Longoria’s star power comes from her roles on ABC’s “Desperate Housewives” and CBS soap opera “The Young and the Restless,” she is also a restaurant owner, among other ventures, and has her own foundation — The Eva Longoria Foundation, co-funded by Warren Buffet’s son Howard, aims to close gaps in education and end poverty in the Latino community.
And, that’s only the first day.