Bacon Brothers Interview: Michael and Kevin on Hosting The Academy Ball

The Bacon Brothers
The Bacon Brothers

When Philadelphia-born Kevin Bacon isn’t busy acting (currently Fox’s The Following) and brother Michael Bacon isn’t recording television themes for PBS series like American Masters and Nova, they play together as The Bacon Brothers, mellow, soulful rock’s favorite sons. On January 25, the pair host Philly’s 157th Academy Ball to benefit the Academy of Music and the Philadelphia Orchestra, and play its post-show after-party.

The Bacon Brothers aren't strangers to Philadelphia charities and events. In 2010, they played benefits for The Mummers Museum, and even recorded a song “New Year’s Day” with a group of Mummers to raise money for the golden slipper set. But, the Academy Ball has a special meaning to the brothers, as it was a grand feat attended by their parents, renowned city planner Edmund Bacon and his wife, Ruth.

A.D. Amorosi: Being from Philly as you both are, you surely get asked to play your share of charitable gigs. What are the criteria that inspire you to participate? 

Michael Bacon: In this case, the Philadelphia Orchestra was a big part of my childhood. Kevin and I grew up in Center City. The Philly Orchestra was like the Phillies to me. I knew every player, who the first chair was and what his name was. When I was in the All-City Orchestra as a kid, Leopold Stokowski came out and conducted. That was a big deal. So, hearing that the Orchestra needed help, I was happy to do it.
Kevin Bacon: I just do what my brother tells me (laughs). Actually, I didn’t have exposure to classical music as a kid, not like Michael did anyway. That was a bigger part of his life. There was music in the house, but I was so wrapped up in AM radio and didn’t play any instruments myself at the time. I do love the Academy of Music though, always did. That’s why I’m looking forward to it.

A.D. Amorosi: The event itself, your dad being who he was and is to this city’s history – was the Academy Ball a must for your parents, part of their social schedule?

Michael Bacon: That’s what was the most fun about doing this. Our parents always went to the Academy Ball. I have a memory of our mother wearing this long, floor-length red dress. It was truly the only time of the year that she ever put on lipstick and make up. They loved to dance, so going to the Academy Ball was the high point of their year.

A.D. Amorosi: Before I continue on about the Ball, I should ask you about your most immediate projects. Michael, can you tell me about the music that you made for two upcoming documentaries, Making Space: 5 Women Changing the Face of Architecture and Good Fortune: Three Men, Three Generations, One Fight?

Michael Bacon: Good Fortune is about New York City’s Morgenthau family, a dynasty I should say - from the grandfather to Robert M. Morgenthau today - that parallels the Kennedy family in a lot of ways. Making Space is a film about women architects, a subject that I feel very close to what with my dad’s calling. I also did another film recently about Charles Eames, the furniture designer. Anything that deals with architecture and design touches me.

A.D. Amorosi: Kevin, any spoilers for the The Following?

Kevin Bacon: Be on the lookout for people in masks.

A.D. Amorosi: Tell me a little bit about how the Academy people got you to not only play, but host. That hasn’t happened before.

Michael Bacon: A lot of these things happen through our agent. Also our sister Hilda is heavily involved with the Kimmel Center, so she may have volunteered us.
Kevin Bacon: I can guarantee you that the playing will be better than the emceeing
Michael Bacon: Speak for yourself.


The Academy of Music 157th Anniversary Concert and Ball Takes place on Saturday, January 25 at  7:30 PM at The Academy of Music, Broad and Locust Streets, Philadelphia, PA. Concert-only amphitheater seats $200, concert-only Family Circle seats $250 (with concert and program book). For more info call 215.893.1999 or visit

Photo courtesy of The Philadelphia Orchestra

Posted on Thursday, January 23, 2014