As you’ve probably heard by now, the Eye Rock benefit concert at this spring’s Vision Expo in New York was an unqualified success. The first-time event attracted a sell-out audience and lots of corporate sponsors who collectively raised $65,000 for Luxottica’s Give the Gift of Sight Foundation, which provides eye exams and eyeglasses to needy people around the world.

The brainchild of producer Steve Santinelli of Santinelli International and Susan Knobler, executive director of Give the Gift of Sight, Eye Rock brought together over 20 rock musicians throughout the optical industry, myself included. The musicians, who ranged from corporate vice-presidents to lab managers to optometrists, represented a true cross-section of the industry. Together we put on a four-hour show that had friends and colleagues cheering for their favorite bands while dancing the night away. It was a great night of music and fun, all in the service of a good cause.

The next day, the first question many people asked was, “When is the next show?”

I’m pleased to report there are plans to put on another optical rock benefit concert this fall at Vision Expo West, as well as plans for a return engagement at Expo East in 2009. Full details will be announced soon by the event’s organizers.

That’s good news for Give the Gift of Sight and other charitable foundations that will benefit from the funds and awareness raised by such events. Yet the need for additional funding never ends. As Susan Knobler told me, the proceeds from Eye Rock will only cover part of the cost of one of the 20 international missions the group undertakes each year and none of the cost of its domestic programs.

I encourage L&T readers to attend these events and support the worthy causes they represent. Keep the music playing.

—Andrew Karp