|This past Monday night, the School of American Ballet held its 2015 Winter Ball at Lincoln Center's David H. Koch Theater, and they raised more than $1.39 million for scholarships and school programs. Van Cleef & Arpels sponsored the glamorous, black-tie dinner dance for the eighth consecutive year.
The evening began with cocktails at 7pm and dinner at 8, followed by a student performance choreographed specially for the occasion, and The Encore dessert and dancing. The proceeds from this event enhance every aspect of the School's extraordinary ballet training program, helping to provide more than $1.9 million annually in student scholarships, as well as supporting faculty, maintaining world-class studios and offering vital student programs beyond the classroom.
|Margie Van Dercook announced that they raised more than $1.39 million this year, their highest ever for this event. These donations will provide scholarships to aspiring dancers and support the School's student life programs.
More than 500 attended, including the School's board members and alumni as well as leaders from the New York corporate and social communities. Among those attending were: Chairmen: Joyce C. Giuffra, Julia F. Koch, Serena Lese, Laura Zeckendorf , Young Patron Chairmen Noreen K. Ahmad and Amanda Brotman Peter Martins, Artistic Director/Chairman of Faculty, Kay Mazzo Co-chairman of Faculty; Darci Kistler: NYCB principal dancers Maria Kowroski, Tiler Peck, and Daniel Ulbricht; Sarah Arison, Jed Bernstein, Marisa Brown, Donya Bommer, Chelsea Clinton, Brad Comisar, George Farias, Olivia Flatto, Shruti Ganguly, Bob Giuffra, Klara Glowczewska, Martin Harvey, Judith Hoffman, Jill and Harry Kargman, David Koch, Fred Koch, Coco and Arie Kopelman, Dr. Susan Krysiewicz and Mr. Thomas Bell, Margo Langenberg, Bill Lese, Mr. and Mrs. Josh Leuchtenburg, Nicolas Luchsinger, Peter Lyden, Alison A. Mazzola, Spencer Means, Elizabeth R. Miller and James G. Dinan, Susan and Ira Millstein, Gillian and Sylvester Miniter, Richard Mishaan, Tom Moore, Marie Nugent-Head, Darcy Nussbaum, Dailey and Gordon Pattee, Liz Peek, Lisa Perry, Michelle Rodriguez, Jill and Andrew Roosevelt, Rachael Sage, Jean Shafiroff, Lauren Shortt, Max R. Shulman, Mary Snow, Jon Stafford, Stellene Volandes, Chelsea Zalopany, William Lie Zeckendorf.
|This year's they celebrated SAB co-founder George Balanchine's affinity for the unique spirit and energy of America. Ron Wendt Design took inspiration from the influences of the Pop Art era and '70's revival using color and whimsy to create a fun and festive atmosphere on the theater's promenade level.
A highlight of the evening was a one-time-only performance by intermediate and advanced students of the School of American Ballet created specifically for the event. This year, New York City Ballet dancer Peter Walker was selected as choreographer by Peter Martins, Artistic Director and Chairman of Faculty for SAB. Mr. Walker hails from Fort Myers, Florida, where he began his early dance training at age eight. He attended the School of American Ballet during the 2006 and 2007 summer courses and enrolled as a full-time student in the winter of 2007. He honed his choreographic skills by participating in SAB's annual Student Choreography Workshop; and in 2011, 2012 and 2014, he was selected by Peter Martins to choreograph the Summer Session of the New York Choreographic Institute. He joined the Company as a member of the corps de ballet in fall 2012.
| The School of American Ballet, the official training academy of the New York City Ballet, was established in 1934 by Mr. Balanchine and philanthropist Lincoln Kirstein as the first and most essential step in their quest to create an American classical ballet company.
SAB, located at New York City's Lincoln Center, is the premier ballet academy in the United States, training more students who go on to become professional dancers than any other school. SAB's former students fill the ranks of the New York City Ballet and other leading U.S. and international ballet companies.
| The week before last, the Jewish Museum held its much-anticipated annual gala, Purim Ball 2015, at the Park Avenue Armory.
The evening of celebration honored artist/photographer/filmmaker Laurie Simmons for her outstanding artistic achievements and in anticipation of her upcoming exhibition at the Museum, which opens this Friday, March 13th. Philanthropists Eugene and Emily Grant received the Mayer Sulzberger Award for their lifelong commitment to art, culture and education in the context of the Jewish experience. Jerry Saltz, New York Magazine Senior Art Critic, served as Purimspieler, wittily retelling the story of Purim.
Purim Ball 2015 raised $2 million and attracted over 1,200 guests including those who attended the After Party.
|Last Monday at the Waldorf, Roundabout Theatre Company held its annual Spring Gala. The evening was titled There is Nothing Like A Dame and recognized the artistic achievements of Dame Helen Mirren by honoring her with the Jason Robards Award for Excellence in Theatre. The award is named for the late Mr. Robards for his longstanding relationship with Roundabout and his memorable body of stage work. It is given to those who have made an indelible impact on both Roundabout and the theatre world. Dame Helen debuted with the Roundabout in their production of “A Month In the Country” in 1995. Jennifer Garner, who was an understudy in that production, presented the award.
The Gala’s chairs were Tom and Kitty Patterson Kempner, Johannes (Johs) Worsoe of the Mitisubishi UFJ Financial Group. The evening included a seated dinner, live auction and a special musical performance by Alan Cumming, Kelli O’Hara, Victor Garber and Laura Benanti. All proceeds benefited Roundabout Theatre Company’s Musical Theatre Fund and Education programs.
|Last week, 780 guests attended the Finding A Cure for Epilepsy and Seizures (FACES) Gala, held at Pier Sixty at Manhattan's Chelsea Piers. Over $4.7 million was raised at the event to support epilepsy research and the advancement of new therapies at NYU Langone Medical Center. Hosting the event was Mike Myers, world-famous actor, comedian, screenwriter, and film producer who is best known for his appearances on Saturday Night Live, and for his roles in the Austin Powers and Shrek films.
A portion of the proceeds from FACES events will be used to support the funding of two outstanding research projects and fellows, each mentored by a preeminent scientist. The first project will use viral and molecular biology techniques to create a switch in a very specific group of interneurons, the cells that shut off seizures, so that these cells can be turned on with a specific drug. The second will dissect and analyze the spread of seizure rhythms so they can be stopped in their tracks.
|During the ceremony, Jacqueline French, MD, professor of neurology, was honored for her influence on the development of new epilepsy therapies and Mary Quick was honored for her dedication to helping families who are living with the challenges that epilepsy brings. Additionally Leah and Michael Weisberg were recognized for generously underwriting the event. Also celebrated were gala chairs Angela and Matt Stone, co-creator of South Park and co-writer of The Book of Mormon, and auction chair Barbara Walsh, an advocate for individuals living with epilepsy.
Orrin Devinsky, MD, founder of FACES, professor of neurology, neurosurgery, and psychiatry, and director of the Comprehensive Epilepsy Center at NYU Langone, highlighted current research by Tanya Spruill, PhD, assistant professor of population health and medicine at the Center for Healthful Behavior Change at NYU Langone, who is developing interventions to reduce the socioeconomic gap in epilepsy care.
|Program highlights included a speech made by one of his patients Margaret Pedersen, who is the daughter of honoree Mary Quick. Also of note was the annual live auction–one of the largest held in New York–conducted by auctioneer Hugh Hildesley, executive vice president of senior business development at Sotheby's. Popular prizes included a private dinner for 12 prepared by Chef Nick Anderer of restaurants Maialino and Marta; tickets to the Billboard Music Awards, including access to the pre- and post-party; dinner at Rao's restaurant; and vacation packages to the exclusive Eden Rock Resort in St. Barths and Tortuga Bay Resort in Punta Cana.|
|Guests in attendance included: Loretta Brennan Glucksman and Kate Cooney Picco, Amy Pollner Moritz, Randi and Jeff Levine, Donna Emma, Warren Lammert, Lucas van Praag, Susan and David Swinghamer, Veronica Mainetti, Brian Friedman, Suzanne Peck, Lori and Stewart Karger, Carolyn Kotler, Katie and Todd Boehly, Alice Thorpe, and Tzili and Leon Charney.|
|Photos by Annie Watt (FACES); Will Ragozzino/SocialShutterbug.com (Jewish Museum).|