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A Night to Remember – Viennese Opera Ball 67th Annual Charity Celebration

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New York City once again honored the beautiful tradition of the Viennese Opera Ball. Celebrating 67 years, the annual charity celebration this year honored Jean Shafiroff and Benefitted Gabrielle’s Angel Foundation. The oldest and most prestigious outside of Vienna took place at The Plaza in New York City with over 400 guests, under the auspices of the U.S. Austrian Chamber of Commerce, and organized by Executive Director, Silvia Frieser and The Event Atelier.

NEW YORK, NY – MAY 12: Jean Shafiroff, Denise Rich and Silvia Frieser attend 67th Viennese Opera Ball Benefiting Gabrielle’s Angel Foundation at The Plaza on May 12, 2023 in New York. (Photo by Sylvain Gaboury/PMC/PMC)

The Gala chairs for the evening were philanthropist Jean Shafiroff, who was also honored and Denise Rich. This gala benefitted Gabrielle’s Angel Foundation for Cancer Research and was “A Night inspired by ‘Carmen’”, from the opera Carmen by Bizet led under the artistic direction of Daniel Serafin with Austrian conductor, Maestro Vinicius Kattah.

Notable Attendees included; Jean Shafiroff, Denise Rich, Sylvia Hemmingway, Commissioner Mermelstein (Mayor’s Office of International Affairs), Kristen Edgreen Kaufman (Mayor’s Office of International Affairs), Peter Hanke (Executive City Councilor, City of Vienna), Stefan Ottrubay (Esterhazy), Norbert Kettner (Director, Vienna Tourism Board), Gudrun Senk (CTO, Wiener Linien), Gerhard Hirczi (CEO, Vienna Business Agency), Christian Frey (Head International Department, Vienna Business Agency), Julian Jäger (Member of the Board of Directors, Vienna Airport), Franz Patay (CEO, United Stages Vienna), Helmut Schoba (CEO, VGN Media Holding), Michael Trestl (CCO, Austrian Airlines), Diana Klein (Augarten), Wolfgang Koechert (A.E. Koechert), Petra Schneebauer (Austrian Ambassador to the United States), Alexander Marschik (Ambassador, Permanent Mission of Austria to the United Nations), Peter Hasslacher (Austrian Trade Commissioner NY), Susanne Keppler-Schlesinger (Austrian Cultural Forum NY), Helmut Schoba (VGN Medien Holding), Franz Patay (United Stages Vienna), Christian Struppeck (Ronacher/Raimund Theater Vienna),  Ingrid Flick (Austrian Entrepreneur), Klaus Panholzer (Schloss Schonbrunn), Austrian fashion designer Carolin Sinemus (Madl, Salzburg), Martin Shafiroff (Stifel), Sabine Riglos (Board member), Maribel Lieberman, Janna Bullock, David Hochberg, Carolyn Maloney, Nicole Miller, Elton Ilirjani, Lucia Hwong Gordon, Lady Liliana Cavendish, Agnieszka & Witold Balaban, Dr. Anetta Reszko, Patrick McMullan, Luisa Diaz, Cole Rumbough & Emily Mohr (Junior Chairs).

NEW YORK, NY – MAY 12: Maribel Lieberman and Sylvia Hemingway attend 67th Viennese Opera Ball Benefiting Gabrielle’s Angel Foundation at The Plaza on May 12, 2023 in New York. (Photo by Patrick McMullan/PMC/PMC)

The presentation of the debutantes and their escorts at the 67th Annual Ball included; Reesa Artz, Clara Burtscher, Rachel Borreta, Mei Colby, Thara Eisingerich, Deborah Engelberg, Isaac Escamilla, Thara Eisingerich, Meyer Eskin, Shifra Eskin, Elias Wallin Giangrande, Gwyneth Giangrande, Joseph Grosh, Royce Howley, Catherine Humphrey, Madison Hoerler, Thomas Itkoff, Sean Jagermann, Alex Koschell, David Kuhn, Benton Madsen, Sofie Maehlkvist, Allegra Marschik, Spencer Napolitano, Maximiliane Norwood, Felix Oblin, Yasmeen Star Omer, Meghan Quinn, Rudolf Schatz, Nick Solari, George Stavropoulos, Anna Talos, Alexander Yale and Maximilian Yale. A beautiful choreography to the Carmen Quadrille by Eduard Strauss was designed for the opening performance of the debutantes and escorts by Vienna Dance School Svabek, headed by Sandra Stockmayer and Roman Svabek.

The vice chairs were Sylvia Hemingway and Peter Thomas Roth. Top opera stars performed arias from the opera Carmen by Bizet including Stephen Costello who sings in leading roles at the Metropolitan Opera and George Gagnidze, both in leading roles at the Metropolitan Opera, internationally accomplished opera singers Joyce El-Khoury (Soprano), Nathalie Peña Comas (Soprano) and opera star George Gagnidze, who attended as an Honorary guest.

Event Sponsors included: City of Vienna, Erste Group Bank AG, Esterhazy, Austrian Airlines, A.E. Koechert, Schloss Schoenbrunn.  Donors included: Augarten, Lobmeyr, Hotel Bristol, Park Hyatt Vienna, Frette, Peter Thomas Roth Skincare, Jacques Lemans, Las Islas Hotel, Malan Bretan, Muehlbauer, Riding Dinner Vienna, and paintings by Austrian artist FJ Baur, artist John Petschinger, artist Fer Da Silva and Austrian wine Mayer am Pfarrplatz.

Performances by Opera Stars Stephen Costello (Tenor) who sings at the Metropolitan Opera in leading roles, as well as international acclaimed opera stars Joyce El-Khoury (Sopran) and Nathalie Peña-Comas (Sopran), a renowned orchestra, Presentation of Colors by Midshipmen from the US Naval Academy, a midnight quadrille, and many other surprises all contribute to a glamorous and delightful evening. Previous notable attendees include The Honorable Michael Ludwig, Governor and Mayor of Vienna, Actress Samantha Mathis, and TV personality Star Jones.

The annual white tie charity gala honors Austria and America’s cultural and economic ties, uniting two continents, two cities, and two centuries in one glamorous evening. It was founded 67 years ago by Austrian immigrants to the United States as a tribute to both their former hometown Vienna and their host city, New York. The gala attracts an international audience that includes diplomats and dignitaries, international corporations, and professionals.

 

 

Photo credit: Sylvain Gaboury /PMC

ElizaBeth Taylor is a journalist for Times Square Chronicles and is a frequent guest at film, fashion and art events throughout New York City and Los Angeles due to her stature as The Sensible Socialite.Passionate about people ElizaBeth spent many years working as a travel reporter and television producer after graduating with high honors from University of Southern California. The work has afforded her the opportunity to explore Europe, Russia, South America, Asia, Australia and the Middle East. It has greatly influenced the way in which ElizaBeth sees a story and has created a heightened awareness for the way people around the world live today.

Events

The 10th Annual Waxman Luncheon

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The 10th Annual Waxman Luncheon, benefiting the Samuel Waxman Cancer Research Foundation (SWCRF), took place in New York City at a new venue, Riverpark. The fundraising event featured a live, thrilling fashion show by legendary designer, Josie Natori, showcasing the Spring 2024 collection. This year’s honoree was Barney Cohen, Managing Director and Wealth Partner at J.P. Morgan Wealth Management, was recognized for his commitment to supporting collaborative cancer research.

Waxman Luncheon Chairs included: Chairs Marion N. Waxman, Jani Gerard, and Erica Linden-Fineberg; Co-Chairs Dina Koutroumanis, Nancy Litman, Lauren Silvers, and Helen Vaysman. The Committee included Karen Giberson, Leena Gurevich, Orital Karelic, Regina Kravitz, Norah Lawlor, Lorri Scott, Jean Shafiroff, and Bettina Waxman.

Notable Attendees included: Barney Cohen, Rachelle Cohen , Josie Natori, Dr. Samuel Waxman, Marion Waxman, Jani Gerard, Kobi Halperin, Helen Vaysman, Ruth Rozenholcabend, Alyssa Klein, Nancy Litman, Lauren Silvers, Brooke Herman Zarkowsky, Jean Shafiroff, Maria Fishel, Mariebel Lieberman, and Ann Liguori.

More than 150 guests attended the affair and helped raise nearly $175,000 to support crucial SWCRF initiatives such as the International Network on Aging and Cancer and the Women’s Cancer Research Program.

Josie Natori, Samuel Waxman

In addition to the fashion presentation, guests were treated to an exciting live auction and had the opportunity to win a Mikimoto Akoya Cultured Pearl and Diamond Pendant valued at $16,000, donated by Mikimoto.

J.P. Morgan was the Luncheon sponson and in-kind donors included Mikimoto, Natori, Palm Bay International, Neuhaus Chocolates, Kobi Halperin, Arlotta Cashmere, Fendi, Movdo Group, Inc., Sachin & Babi, Jimmy Choo, Jil Sander, Chloé, Carlos Falchi, Maximilian, and many more. Flowers provided courtesy of ByRobin Event Design and Management Group.

Since 1976, SWCRF has invested more than $120 million towards collaborative, cross-institutional research, supporting more than 200 investigators around the world.

The SWCRF philosophy of collaboration has led to breakthrough discoveries such as a treatment for acute promyelocytic leukemia (APL), developed in collaboration with researchers at the Shanghai Institute of Hematology that improved the survival rate to 95% (APL had an 80% fatality rate). Most recently, research funded by SWCRF led to an FDA approved medication shown to reduce lung cancer tumors by up to 50% by targeting the KRAS protein, helped develop an innovative two-drug therapy to better treat brain tumors which are often difficult to target, and studies exploring how aging impacts the spread of ovarian cancer in older patients. Several other studies are in clinical trials.

Photos by BFA / Rupert Ramsay

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Luisa Diaz Foundation Hosts Dazzling 10th Anniversary Black Tie Mag Gala

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Everything about the night sparkled with blissful joy. On May 15, the Luisa Diaz Foundation celebrated a milestone 10th anniversary black tie MAG gala at The Plaza Hotel.

Notable Attendees included: Luisa Diaz Brown, Alan Brown, Peter Thomas Roth, Beatriz Gasca, Noreen Donovan, Candace Bushnell, Julia Haart, Lynda Lopez, Tracey Turco, Fernando Allende, Trish Steele, Anne Fontaine, Nicole Miller, Jane Shafiroff, Consuelo Vanderbilt, DJ Chloe Jane, and Pamela Morgan.

Nicole Miller

It was a grand “Celebration of Kindness” attended by important international changemakers from across the globe and underpins the organization’s motto that “kindness is cool.”

Candace Bushnell

The night started with an introduction from special host Consuelo Vanderbilt, the Runway of Hope show featured the survivors as the focal point of the evening.  Pamela Morgan, star of her one-woman Broadway show sang and after dinner the celebrations were put into high gear by singer and DJ Chloe Jane. Eyewitness News Kristin N. Thorne introduced the charities that were beneficiaries of this year’s Gala.

Consuelo Vanderbilt

The night started with an introduction from special host Consuelo Vanderbilt, the Runway of Hope show featured the survivors as the focal point of the evening.  Pamela Morgan, star of her one-woman Broadway show sang and after dinner the celebrations were put into high gear by singer and DJ Chloe Jane. Eyewitness News Kristin N. Thorne introduced the charities that were beneficiaries of this year’s Gala.

Peter Thomas Roth

Three Kindness is Cool Awards were given to honorees at the Gala –  Peter Thomas Roth Presented by Candace Bushnell, Beatriz Gasca presented by Lynda Lopez and Jovani Fashions presented by Juliia Faist.

The survivors surprised Luisa with a proclamation from the New York State Senate recognizing the work she is doing with survivors of domestic violence and human trafficking as well as living up to her overarching theme of “Kindness is Cool”  by proclaiming May 15th,  “Luisa Diaz Day.”

Luisa Diaz and Guests

The annual event this year honored a decade of changing lives in communities across America with 2024 focusing on two organizations – Safe Passage Heals and Sanctuary for Families.

The survivors surprised Luisa with a proclamation from the New York State Senate recognizing the work she is doing with survivors of domestic violence and human trafficking as well as living up to her overarching theme of “Kindness is Cool”  by proclaiming May 15th,  “Luisa Diaz Day.”

An all-star lineup of presenters and performers dedicated the night to honorees and the organizations that are collectively shinning a light on the dangers of human trafficking and sharing support for the fight to help domestic violence survivors. The subjects are often not focused on, and this event hopes to spread much-needed awareness.

 

Photo Credit: Shutterstock / Greg Pace

 

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Amas Musical Theatre’s 55th Annual Benefit Gala Concert And You Are There

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Amas Musical Theatre celebrated its 55th Anniversary at Baruch Performing Arts Center. This was their 55th annual Gala Benefit Concert.

The gala started with a champagne toast, then a a concert performance of “A Lotta Night Music,” directed by Jonathan Cerullo. A cast of Broadway luminaries performed songs from such shows as Grease, They’re Playing Our Song, and A Little Night Music, among others.

Ilene Kristen and Patricia Birch

Liz Callaway

Carole Demas

Carole Demas

Teens from The Rosetta LeNoire Musical Theatre Academy were a part of the evening.

Dee Hoty

Hugh Panaro

Robert Cuccioli and Joanna Carpenter

Robert Cuccioli

The evening culminated with the presentation of the 2024 “Rosie” Award to Honorees award-winning choreographer and director Patricia Birch (A Little Night Music, Parade)

Honorees Len Cariou and Patricia Birch

Tony Award-wining actor Len Cariou (Sweeney Todd, Applause)

Donna Trinkoff and Honoree Tim Butler of Butler and Tibbetts

Liz Callaway and Len Cariou

Adran Zmed, Sharleen Cooper Cohen and Ken Waissman

Lorna Luft, Adrian Zmed and Patricia Birch

Robert Kalfin and Len Cariou

Cast and Creative of tonights show

Robert Cuccioli and Len Cariou

and Butler Tibbets, a beloved corporate sponsor for Amas programs for many years.

Kylie Kuioka

Patricia Birch , Lorna Luft

Lorna Luft,Adrian Zmed

Joanna Carpenter

Geoffrey Owns

Adrian Zmed

Carole Demas and Lorna Luft

Hugh Panaro and Len Cariou

Jonathan Cerullo and Richie Ridge

Jonathan Cerullo and Robert Cuccioli

Donna Trinkoff and Ken Waissman

Barry Kleinbort

Christopher Scott and Donna Trinkoff

Barry Kleinbort and Honoree Len Cariou

Fred Redd

Maria Torres and John O’Conner

Patricia Birch

Sam Freed and Patricia Birch

Lynne Taylor Corbett and Sean Corbett

Sarah Beth Grossman, Sharleen Cooper Cohen and Celso Gonzalez

Jonathan Cerullo

Lou Liberatore and Christopher Scott

Jennifer Toldeo and Antonio Baldbinas

Riki Kane Larimer and James Morgan

Stephanie Rosenberg

DAN MANJOVI

Bill Russell

Mark William

Jim Kierstead

Alexandra Trinkoff, Daryl Ruben Hall, Donna Trinkoff, Sharleen Cooper Cohen, Jason Rose, Stephanie Rosenberg, Linda Chichester and Eric Krebs

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Voices for Victoria Launches Call-To-Action Campaign Ahead of June 6th: National Naloxone Awareness Day

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In today’s America, there is an urgent ongoing crisis which can no longer go on. Within the last year, it was reported that over 112,000 lives were lost to opioid- and fentanyl-related overdoses. This epidemic is affecting everyone from all walks of life, leaving all vulnerable to the horrific nature of what has become a sad mark on our country’s history.

The crucial time to turn this statistic around and to create a better tomorrow has arrived, and we’re all responsible for answering the call. Voices for Victoria is a movement that was initiated by philanthropist Nancy Ross in support of the Victoria’s Voice Foundation, a non-profit organization founded with a mission of educating individuals on substance abuse prevention and addiction resources.

Dedicated to spreading awareness about opioid overdose reversal medications like Naloxone, Victoria’s Voice is collectively working day and night to bring attention to a mass movement for change. In need of assistance from advocates, celebrities, and government officials alike, the organization is asking for individuals to join the mission to generate more education and accessibility for Naloxone. At the same time the trailblazers are educating communities about its life-saving potential. They firmly believe that everyone deserves to have access to this vital medication.

For Ross—a mother, investigative journalist, philanthropist, and overdose awareness advocate—the fight to save the next generation is one that hits close to home.

“It’s so important that we are creating the kind of world that’s conducive for not only our children to inhabit, but generations upon generations of teenagers who are going to eventually learn about the impacts of substance addiction,” Ross asserts. “As a mom, I want to know that I’m helping to create a better world for my three children, and for the many students and community members whom this has already affected. We have to fight to save people from the clutches of this epidemic.”

By kickstarting an empowering #VoicesForVictoria social media campaign, this initiative sends a powerful message to communities across the nation that tangible reform is just around the corner, and that no one life should go overlooked. Using a platform has the influence to make a real difference in this fight against opioid overdose deaths.

“I learned about Naloxone after attending an event for Victoria’s Voice, and was blown away by the work they were doing in the community,” Ross says. “Imagine, Victoria could’ve been my own child. The thought that parents are losing their children due to a simple lack of awareness surrounding Naloxone is heartbreaking, but Voices for Victoria is working to remedy that. We are going to make a real difference through this movement.”

As both a parent and public figure, Ross feels responsible for helping to spread the word. As she joins with Victoria’s Voice, the philanthropist seeks to get others to respond to the call of advocacy, and to get the message about Naloxone out to every part of this country.

By reaching wider audiences, #VoicesForVictoria allows even more individuals to join the movement and encourage others to learn more about the life-saving capabilities of Naloxone. From neighbors to friends to loved ones, involvement with this campaign has the profound ability to save millions of people from succumbing to preventable deaths. Through Naloxone awareness, Victoria’s Voice.

Various initiatives leading up to National Naloxone Awareness Day on June 6 are in the works, with one such notable event featuring media personality and the “Wolf of Wall Street,” Jordan Belfort, with a live TikTok and Q&A session on Saturday, May 18 at 3pm EST. Belfort is helping to lead the charge to help save the next generation before it is too late. The critical information will be on his feed in front of his 3.6 million followers on his TikTok account, @wolfofwallstreet.

Victoria’s Voice was founded after Victoria Siegel—the daughter of “The Real Queen of Versailles” icon Jackie Siegel—passed away from a drug overdose on June 6, 2015, at just 18 years old. Victoria was just one of 129 Americans who lost their lives to  a drug overdose on that day. Since then, a staggering number of families across the United States have lost a loved one to overdose. In fact, nearly 300 people die from a drug overdose every single day in this country.

Join the movement today, and save lives with Voices for Victoria on the Victoria’s Voice Foundation official website.

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New York Women’s Foundation Celebrating Women Breakfast

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New York Women’s Foundation Celebrating Women Breakfast took place on May 8 to celebrate leading change-making organizations and individuals.

Held at the New York Marriott Marquis Hotel, honorees and The Foundation’s grantee partners who are advancing innovative and bold solutions to create an equitable and just future for women and families in the New York City metro area and beyond were recognized.

Cynthia Nixon

The day recognized Foundation CHANEL with the Vision Award for the organization’s courageous efforts in creating a world where women and girls are free to shape their own destiny. The following changemakers were awarded with Celebrating Women Awards: Andrea Arroyo, an award-winning visual artist, New York Liberty, an original WNBA team who embraces its role to elevate and embrace women while building community, Cynthia Nixon, Emmy and Tony award winning actress, activist, and theater director, Toshi Reagon, a singer songwriter who knows the power of song to unite and mobilize people for justice, and S. Mona Sinha, Global Executive Director of Equality Now.

Ana Oliveira

 

The awards were presented by Jacqueline Woodson, MacArthur Fellow and National Book Award-winner for her children’s and adult books, Ana Maria Archilla, immigrant rights, worker justice, LGBTQ rights, and women’s rights advocate, and Foundation Board Members Anne Delaney, Helene Banks, Lola C. West, and Karen Choi.

Notable attendees included Fogo Azul NYC, Andrea Arroyo, Cynthia Nixon, Toshi Reagon, S. Mona Sinha, Jacqueline Woodson, Ana Maria Archilla, Anne Delaney, Helene Banks, Lola C. West, Karen Choi, Ana L. Olivieri, and Jean Shafiroff.

Since 1987, The Foundation has invested $125 million in 500+ organizations, creating a vibrant community of grantees, philanthropists, advocates, innovators, and change-makers.

To learn more about The New York Women’s Foundation’s work to transform lives, families, and communities, please visit www.nywf.org

 

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