|New York Restoration Project (NYRP), founded by award-winning singer, entertainer, actress, and green activist Bette Midler, celebrated over two decades of transforming and beautifying New York's urban environment with its annual Spring Picnic held at the historic Morris-Jumel Mansion. The evening's host comedian and actress Sandra Bernhard joined Martha Stewart and architect/designer David Rockwell to honor award-winning chef Marcus Samuelsson, the restauranteur behind New York hotspots Red Rooster, Streetbird and Ginny's Supper Club, and The Home Depot's Richard Gess. The Spring Picnic raised over $1 million to support NYRP's mission to transform open space in under-resourced communities to create a greener, more sustainable New York City.
|Sunset cocktails on the picturesque patio and dinner in the quaint garden were provided by Marcus Samuelsson's Harlem restaurant Streetbird and Riza Printup, Riley Mulherkar Group, Chris Pattishall Quartet and Russell Hall entertained the crowd with light jazz throughout the evening. NYRP Executive Director Deborah Marton announced a new NYRP/Marcus Samuelsson Group collaboration to begin this summer. Community members in two of NYRP's East Harlem gardens will grow produce for Streetbird, with revenue going directly to the gardeners.|
|"For two decades, NYRP has created green spaces in underserved communities, and what we know is that trees, gardens and open space do so much more than beautify neighborhoods – they transform lives," said NYRP's Executive Director Deborah Marton. "With support from generous New Yorkers and spirited partners like Marcus Samuelsson of Red Rooster Harlem and Richard Gess of The Home Depot, we are committed as ever to restoring and revitalizing our public spaces for a greener, more sustainable New York City."|
|Among the hundreds of NYRP supporters also attending were Bette Midler, Michael Kors and Lance Le Pere, Linda Allard, Alex Cohen, Todd DeGarmo, Mica Ertegun, Vernon Evenson, Amy Goldman Fowler and Cary Fowler, Ed Hollander, Deborah Marton, Ben Needell, Brian Sawyer, Ryan Serhant, Mitchell Silver, Pamela and Allen Swerdlick, Brian and Linda Tauscher, and Barbara Wilks.
This summer, Morris-Jumel Mansion and NYRP are partnering to curate exciting cultural and volunteer event opportunities in Washington Heights. For more info on NYRP's upcoming programming visit www.nyrp.org/calendar.
|The American Friends of the Paris Opera and Ballet hosted an exceptional dinner on Thursday June 9th, for 80 guests including artistes, patrons and officials, in honor of Aurelie Dupont, Etoile (Prima Ballerina) of the Paris Opera. The danseuse Etoile is following in the steps of Nureyev and will succeed Benjamin Millepied as the new director of the Ballet this summer.
During a long conversation with the Chairman of the American Friends of the Paris Opera & Ballet Olivia Flatto, Aurelie Dupont recalled that during the two years she lived in America near Washington DC from 7 to 9 years old, she became a fan of Annie. When she returned to France, she joined to the Paris Opera Ballet School to eventually become a Danseuse Etoile when she was 25 years old on New Year’s Eve 1998 after a representation of Don Quichotte. “The Paris Opera is my family,” she told Olivia Flatto. As the new Director of the Paris Opera Ballet, she will co-host the 16/17 Season Opening Gala during a evening of dance, splendor and glamour at the Palais Garnier in Paris next September 24th.
|The French minister for Foreign Affairs — and former French Prime minister — Jean-Marc Ayrault opened the dinner, thanking the guests for their passion and contributions to the Paris Opera, which will host the American Ballet Theater this September. On that occasion, the American Friends of the Paris Opera & Ballet have organized a special “Paris Escape,” not only to attend the opening night of Alexei Ratmansky’s “Sleeping Beauty" at the Paris Opera, but also to meet with the artists, tour the backstage at Palais Garnier, visit the legendary Christian Dior Hotel Particulier, lunch at the Vuitton Foundation and to attend concert at the new La Philharmonie de Paris.
During the dinner, pianist John Rondinelli performed a fantaisie from Chopin and an impromptu from Rachmaninoff to the joy of the guests of Mary Sharp Cronson, Almudena Legarreta, Olivia Flatto and Maz Zouhairi, co-chairs of the evening.
|Among those attending: Ambassador of France to the United States Gérard Araud, Conseul General of France to New York Bertrand Lortholary, H.E. Princess Alexandra of Greece JC Agid, Rob Ashford, Martine and Prosper Assouline, Tim Barefield, Marianne Boesky, Albane de Chattelus, Christophe Danzin, Michele Oka and Fred Donner, Joanna and Brian Fisher, Francoise Gilot, Tom Gold, Allen Greenberg, Jean-Yves Kaced, René and Marie France Kern, Stephanie Labeille, Kinga Lampert, Helen Little, Andrew Martin-Weber, B. Michael, Benedicte de Montlaur, Ann Van Ness, Iffie Okoronkwo, Rosario Perez, Meryl Rosofsky, Allyson Tang, Felicia Taylor, Maylis Vranken-Thierry, Laure Vienot-Tronche, and Shen Wei.|
|Over this past weekend, Storm King Art Center celebrated its annual Summer Solstice Celebration. It was their largest welcoming more than 300 to celebrate the Solstice for an al fresco benefit dinner. Guests enjoyed cocktails and hors d'oeuvres on Storm King's grounds while viewing the exhibitions Dennis Oppenheim: Terrestrial Studio and Outlooks: Josephine Halvorson.
Following the reception, guests dined under the stars, enjoying a farm-to-table Southwestern-themed dinner designed by Food Network chef Amanda Freitag and Shelley Boris of Fresh Company and inspired by the vibrant colors of the Dennis Oppenheim exhibition.
|Storm King's President John Stern and Director and Chief Curator David Collens, along with Storm King Curator Nora Lawrence, welcomed notable artists, curators, dealers, and art world luminaries including Amy Plumb Oppenheim, Agnes Gund, Klaus Beisenbach, Helen W. Drutt English, Chakaia Booker, Josephine Halvorson, Doug and Mike Starn, Doreen and Gilbert Bassin, and New York City Council Speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito, among many others.|
|Down in Nashville this past June 4th, they held the annual Swan Ball, one of the South’s most prestigious white tie charity events at Cheekwood the fabled estate and botanical gardens.
Founded by the famous Southern social beauty, Jane Anderson Dudley – who was present at the evening -- and celebrating its 54th year, the Swan Ball is one of the nation’s oldest and most successful events.
|Co-Chairmen for the evening were Elizabeth (Mrs. Thomas Clark) Akers and Nan (Mrs. Thomas Fagan) Cox. New York-based Jung Lee, founder and co-owner of Fête, designed the evening. An epicurean Swan Ball feast will once again be prepared by Nashville’s Kristen Winston, with Kristen Winston Catering. Nashville’s very own, Reba McEntire, was its headline entertainer. The Sultans of Swing, from Martha’s Vineyard entertained during the cocktail hour and dinner. They later re-grouped for the late night party which was full Swing until 3:00 a.m.|
|The 2016 Swan Award which has been given at the Ball annually since 1969, was presented to music executive and philanthropist Rob Beckham. Mr. Beckham is currently a partner at WME and the co-head of the agency’s Nashville office. The award is given to individuals distinguished in the arts or by their dedicated service to humanity.
Funds raised from the evening, including auctions, annually benefit Cheekwood. The fifty-five acre estate was built in the 1920s by the Cheek Family who founded Maxwell House Coffee. It isone of the finest examples of an American Country Place Era Estate in the United States.
|Earlier this month, friends gathered to kick-off the 25th Anniversary Celebration of Sir John Soane's Museum's Foundation. The setting was elegant 19th-century Greenwich Village residence of Nicholas and Courtney Stern (the house was featured in Architectural Digest, October 2014). The evening also kick-started the celebration of architect Thomas Phifer and graphics genius Michael Bierut, both of whom will be presented with the Soane Foundation Honors at the Soane's Visionaries Gala being held at the Rainbow Room on Thursday, 29 September 2016.|
|Attending the celebratory night was Tom and Kristin Kligerman (Tom, President of the Soane Foundation), Charlotte Moss (Gala Co-Chair), Jean Phifer, Dorothy Bierut, James Sanders and Ingrid Bernstein, Suzanne and David Santry, Susan Zises Green, Fern Mallis, Carlos Picon and Andrew Kepler, Katherine Bettis, Rebecca Birdwell, Nicholas Negroponte, Elizabeth Howard, Dan Zuzunaga, Katie Leede, Anne Fairfax and Richard Sammons, Gil Schafer, Jody Friedman, Chip Kidd, Kathryn Berry, Allison Caccoma, Betty and Stanley Scott, Birch Coffey, Lucius Elliott, Charles Miers, Karen Gage, Brian Sawyer, Steven Yee, Barbara Pine, Douglas Wright, Suzanne Stephens, Jonathan Hogg, Bill Brockschmidt and Courtney Coleman, Kathy Springhorn, Anne Edgar, Mark Nelson, Wendy Moonan, Meredith Kane and Richard Sharp, Sarah Magness, Barbara and Robert Sallick, Chas Miller, Philip Resser, Stephanie Stokes, Brigham Wilcox, John Flower, Susanna Sirefman and Alexander Shapiro, Ron Broadhurst.|
|Photographs by Annie Watt (Soane); Mia McDonald (NYRP)|