|The American Ballet Theatre held its annual spring gala this past Monday night with a performance at the Metropolitan Opera House of Igor Stravinsky’s “Firebird” as choreographed by Alexei Ratmansky with Misty Copeland in the title role.
The New York Times gave it a rave – “The ‘Firebird’ – now enthrallingly suspenseful storytelling – looked far better than when new ... For these and other reasons this was Ballet Theatre’s most valuable gala in many, many years. Mr. Ratmansky, long a very fine choreographer, now begins to seem a great one.”
The evening was resplendent also in the ladies in the audience, beautifully and glamorously dressed for the occasion.
Michelle Obama was Honorary Chair of the evening. Gala chairs were Pamela Ford, Mary Elizabeth Snow, Sutton Stracke, Caryn Zucker.
|On May 3, 2016, nearly 650 supporters including patients, family members, healthcare leaders and business executives attended the 14th Annual Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation (MMRF) Laugh for Life: New York. The evening raised over $875,000 making this year's event the most successful ever. This support further accelerates scientific research in multiple myeloma while setting the standard for efforts in all cancers.
The event featured the comedic talent of Joy Behar, comedic emcee, writer, actress and Emmy Award-Winning talk show co-host. Actor and comedian Brad Zimmerman opened the night, and New York stage actor and stand-up comedian Mario Cantone was the headline performer. For the second year in a row, WABC-TV meteorologist Amy Freeze served as Mistress of Ceremonies.
|The MMRF honored Laugh Co-Chair Sherri Lippman with the Carol Goldschein Spirit of Hope Award presented by Celgene for her extraordinary commitment to the MMRF and its mission. Mrs. Lippman's dedication and drive to cure this disease is inspired by her close connection to multiple myeloma: her father passed away from the disease, and her sister, Jane is currently battling this incurable cancer.
Laugh for Life was founded by three sisters – Sue Korn, Cindi Stern, and the late Carol Goldschein –to support the MMRF mission and to celebrate life through laughter. It has since raised almost $7 million to support transformative cancer research. Laugh co-chairs included Sherri Lippman and Alison Slap Tress. Presenting Sponsor was Celgene Corporation and Leadership Circle Sponsors were Janssen Oncology and Takeda Oncology.
|The Multiple Myeloma Research Foundation (MMRF) was established in 1998 by twin sisters Karen Andrews and Kathy Giusti, soon after Kathy's diagnosis with multiple myeloma. The mission of the MMRF is to relentlessly pursue innovative means that accelerate the development of next-generation multiple myeloma treatments to extend the lives of patients and lead to a cure. As the world's number-one private funder of multiple myeloma research, the MMRF has raised more than $300 million since its inception and directs nearly 90% of total budget to research and related programming. As a result, the MMRF has been awarded Charity Navigator's coveted four-star rating for 11 consecutive years, the highest designation for outstanding fiscal responsibility and exceptional efficiency.|
|Over 500 guests came together at The Pershing Square Signature Center for Signature Theatre's 25th Anniversary Gala honoring the theatre's Founding Artistic Director, James Houghton for his leadership on the occasion of his last season. Under Houghton's leadership, the Company has launched three distinct residency programs; produced more than 100 plays; built The Pershing Square Signature Center; created the Signature Ticket Initiative, designed to create accessibility to theatre for all; and became the first New York City recipient of the Regional Theater Tony Award.
|The star-studded evening, hosted by Board Chairman Edward Norton and star of ABC's Modern Family Ty Burrell (both alumni of the Signature Theatre stage) featured a number of live performances and videos celebrating Houghton and representing artistic and programmatic milestones from each of the theatre's first 25 years. The evening kicked off with a rousing performance by jazz band Sammy Miller and the Congregation, and continued with the reading of an official Proclamation from the City of New York naming April 18 "James Houghton Day", along with a congratulatory letter from President Barack Obama.|
|Performers included: Leon Addison Brown, Meghan Andrews, Marsha Stephanie Blake, T-Bone Burnett, Chuck Cooper, Brandon Dirden, Jason Dirden, Frankie Faison, Hallie Foote, Bill Heck, Charlie Hudson III, Joaquina Kalukango, Maggie Lacey, January LaVoy, Tonya Pinkins, Roslyn Ruff, Ruben Santiago-Hudson, Peter Sarsgaard, and Lois Smith.
Special Guests for the evening included: Laura Linney, Peter Sarsgaard, Tony Kushner, Suzan-Lori Parks, Bill Heck, David Henry Hwang, Ruben Santiago-Hudson, T Bone Burnett, A.R. Gurney, Katori Hall, Regina Taylor, Tonya Pinkins, Bill Irwin, Annie Baker, among many others.
|Madison Square Boys & Girls Club raised over $1 million for its youth programs with the Fourth Annual Youth of the Year Dinner at Pier 60, Chelsea Piers. Over 600 guests celebrated the success of four Clubhouse youth, who have demonstrated a consistent dedication to their education. Youth of the Year is the premier national recognition program for Boys & Girls Club members.
|Frank Fortino, President and CEO of Metropolis Group, and Peter Serpico, Principal and CEO of Omnibuild, were featured as the Champion of Youth Honorees. Carrie Schwab-Pomerantz, Board Chair and President of Charles Schwab Foundation, and Senior Vice President at Charles Schwab & Co., served as the Keynote Speaker. Cheryl Wills, award-winning anchor and senior reporter for New York One News, joined as the Master of Ceremonies. The evening's special guests included Madison's four Youth of the Year: Daquan Saxon, Maylynn Rosario, Chassidy David and Kayla Williams.
|Serving over 5,000 youth in some of New York City's most disadvantaged communities, Madison offers a safe and supportive place where urban youth can come when they are not in school and find support and guidance from caring adults. Madison aims to empower youth from underserved neighborhoods to see past their own circumstances and find the tools necessary to pursue the vast opportunities that lie ahead of them.
"I have grown so much because of the countless opportunities and programs that were opened to me," said Chassidy David. "It is at the Club where I am able to forget about any troubles and receive all the love, encouragement, and support I need. To be a member of the Club is truly an opportunity to be a part of greatness."
|Photographs by Hunter Abrams/BFA.com (ABT); Joan Marcus & Shevett Studio (Signature Theatre)|