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Tis The Season: As The Tabernacle Choir Gifts $100,000 Donation to The Actors Fund Via Brian Stokes Mitchell

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Brian Stokes Mitchell, during a luncheon at Feinstein’s/54 Below sang John Bucchino’s “Grateful” to thank The Tabernacle Choir for their donation of a $100,000 to the Actors Fund. Gary Porter, second counselor in the Tabernacle Choir at Temple Square presidency and senior vice president of Deseret Management Corp was there to do the honors.

The choir’s donation will help many. Stokes stated “These spaces have been very, very rough this year and very, very lonely for people. So many people left and a lot of people have gone bankrupt. We’ve lost a lot of people that could not take it. Some died by suicide or from the coronavirus. Too many to mention.”

The Actors Fund provides aid ranging from counseling to paying utility bills, health insurance costs and more. It is offering $5,000 grants to encourage theater professionals to return to New York City. This year, the fund has provided $24 million to 17,000 people.

The donation said Porter, was a way to thank all the performers who have come to Salt Lake City to perform in the Tabernacle Choir’s annual Christmas concerts over the last 20 years.

In December 2020, the choir canceled its Christmas concert because of health guidelines and prohibited mass gatherings. PBS and BYUtv aired the 2019 concert as scheduled. But without a 2020 concert what would be broadcast on PBS.org this year? The solution was a 20th anniversary retrospective.

Thayne Jaspers From Hamilton, Gary Porter

Mitchell is hosting the choir’s two-hour special “20 Years of Christmas with The Tabernacle Choir,” which premieres Monday at 6 p.m. MST on PBS, PBS.org and the PBS video app. BYUtv will broadcast the special beginning Dec. 16.

Gary Porter

The special will include more than 60 songs, carols and stories from over 40 guest artists and narrators who have starred in the Christmas tradition since it began in 2000. (See the list of performers below.)

Brian Stokes Mitchel and the check

The two-hour special includes Broadway songs sung in past concerts by Alfie Boe, Angela Lansbury and Kelli O’Hara, as well as performances by other Broadway stars like Kristin Chenoweth and Audra McDonald.

Gary Porter, second counselor in the Tabernacle Choir at Temple Square presidency and senior vice president of Deseret Management Corp., presents a $100,000 donation from the choir to the Actors Fund

Lansbury’s rendition of “Not While I’m Around” from Sweeney Todd, which won the 1979 Tony Award for Best Musical, is especially poignant because the music and lyrics were written by legendary composer and lyricist Stephen Sondheim, who died November 26.

 Ruthie Fierberg

“The fact there is a Sondheim song in the concert is a very lovely tribute,” said Ruthie Fierberg, an entertainment journalist who moderated Wednesday’s luncheon panel discussion between Mitchell and Choir musical director Mack Wilberg.

 Ruthie Fierberg

The choir’s $100,000 donation re above and beyond whatever is being raised this month for the Actors Fund in the Giving Machines operated by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in New York’s Rockefeller Center, Porter said.

Mitchell helped introduce those machines to New York media at an event last week.

Mitchell was the choir’s guest performer for its 2008 Christmas concert. He also has performed at BYU’s Homecoming Spectacular in 2011 and 2021 and at BYU-Idaho’s 2018 Christmas concert.

Mitchell’s video’s singing “The Impossible Dream” to New York’s essential workers from his apartment window during the pandemic went viral. “Artists are essential workers of another kind. We get to heal people’s hearts and their souls and their minds and their spirits and lift them when they’re down. Artists got me through this pandemic as well, and that’s why it was so important that we’re able to take care of artists.”

Wednesday’s donation came days after the Tabernacle Choir and Orchestra at Temple Square reached No. 1 on Billboard’s Classical Traditional chart for the 15th time with their newest album, “Christmas Best,” a compilation of music from the past 15 Christmas concerts.

Suzanna, co-owns and publishes the newspaper Times Square Chronicles or T2C. At one point a working actress, she has performed in numerous productions in film, TV, cabaret, opera and theatre. She has performed at The New Orleans Jazz festival, The United Nations and Carnegie Hall. She has a screenplay and a TV show in the works, which she developed with her mentor and friend the late Arthur Herzog. She is a proud member of the Drama Desk and the Outer Critics Circle and was a nominator. Email: suzanna@t2conline.com

Celebrity

The Glorious Corner

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G.H. Harding

ALEC BALDWIN — I’ve had my own issues with Alec Baldwin for years; then, literally on a dime, it all turned around and I found him to be pretty compassionate, intelligent and a nice guy. What happened in Santa Fe on the Rust set was an unspeakable tragedy, and his trial was halted yesterday and the case was dismissed due to evidence not being given to the Baldwin-team. The Santa Fe prosecutor Kari Morrisey seemingly told two different stories on the stand and outside the court room. She is, without a doubt, toast.

Baldwin is still liable for civil suits, but this case is gone and he cannot be tried again. A win for sure, but the questions still remain: who brought live ammo onto the Rust-set. Clearly that may never, ever be determined.

Baldwin’s a good guy with a short fuse, but this situation, once and for all, is done.

Mirage

SHORT TAKES — Hard to believe the Las Vegas Mirage is closing … after 35 years. Opened in 1983 it was a great hotel and hosted The Beatles’ Love show. I have stayed there numerous times and loved it. The new owner will build a Hard Rock hotel there, with a HUGE guitar in front. Yet again changing the skyline of that town. It’ll open in 2027 …

Lyndsey Parker

Lyndsey Parker is a terrific writer. Her new site, Lyndsanity just posted a great interview with Micky Dolenz about his direction of the video “Love Is Dangerous” from Noel – masterminded by the Mael Brothers in 1979. Great piece, check it out here:  https://www.lyndsanity.com/music/micky-dolenz-on-directing-long-lost-dancing-is-dangerous-video-for-sparks-protege-noel-its-pretty-weird-huh/?fbclid=IwZXh0bgNhZW0CMTAAAR2W-9c0OfpLdT3WVy52ZWliQu7XTVoVjaYREbiUMSAUcdgJatcsL547X8c_aem_8St7LVBDI_U5Qp-ZJ5lxQA

… Hard to believe there are only 8 episodes left of CBS’ Blue Bloods. Salary concerns killed this show and it’s a shame as it was really superb for 15 years. Bad move on CBS’ part …

Zach Martin

Veteran-broadcaster Denny Somach joins Zach Martin’s NEW HD radio – https://newhdmedia.com/rock-and-roll-for-grownups-debut-denny-somach/?fbclid=IwZXh0bgNhZW0CMTEAAR1j_BeyvWnRksk6pRN7IUtWK-kzu5G35zKqcjBUjVJOJ3w_b4IVFjDE6UI_aem_hW0aEBIVaHEwpJXVTItulA

Benny Harrison

Whatever happened to Benny Harrison’s album Pages? It was a great one. Heard an early advance and loved it …And, (via Deadline)

Stevie Nicks

There are special guest stars, and then there’s extra-special guest stars. Which is what Harry Styles what is as he joined Stevie Nicks at her July 12 concert in the UK for versions of her hits “Stop Draggin’ My heart Around” and “Landslide.” Styles played guitar on stage and held up on the Tom Petty/Lindsey Buckingham vocal parts. It was familiar turf, as Styles has joined Nicks on stage several times in the past. Nicks was appearing at the BST Hyde Park concert series on Friday. Nicks told the audience in London that she asked Styles to help her in commemorating what would have been her late Fleetwood Mac bandmate Christine McVie’s 81st birthday … RIP Dr. Ruth!

NAMES IN THE NEWS — Nancy Ruth; Mark Bego; Freda Payne; Jerry Brandt; Kent & Laura Denmark; Tom & Lisa Cuddy; David Kramer; Terry Jastrow; Steve Immerman; Jordan Immerman; Tony Seidl; Roy Trakin; Markos Papadatos; Sparks; Pat Prince; Cindy Adams; Tony LoBianco; Tone Scott; David Adelson; Joel Denver; Pat Prince; and SADIE!

 Images on this page have been licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike 4.0 International license.

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Events

The Ellen Hermanson Foundation Raising Money For Breast Cancer

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The Ellen Hermanson Foundation hosted their Summer Gala 2024 fundraising event, on Saturday, July 13th, from 6:30PM-11:30PM at Bridgehampton Tennis & Surf Club in Bridgehampton, NY. Oceanside cocktails and hors d’oeuvres on the deck, dinner, dancing and an auction, with an after-party with a beach bonfire and s’mores followed.

The Foundation honor Dr. Fredric Weinbaum, medical doctor extraordinaire and former Chief Administrative Officer/COO of Stony Brook Southampton Hospital and The Honorable Rebecca A. Seawright, Member of the New York State Assembly whose 3-D screening bill signed into law expands access to cancer screenings without cost sharing, to include 3-D Mammagraphy. These are two brilliant people who have done so much to make our community a healthier place.

Jean Shafiroff, noted philanthropist and author, is the Gala Chair, along with the Young Professional Committee, Host Committee and The Board of Directors.

Notable guests were Congresswoman Carolyn Maloney, Martin Shafiroff, Kenneth Fishel, Ann Cirdullo, Lucas Hunt, Jane Scher, Gayle Brophy, Keith and Carol Grupman, Victoria Schneps, Alexandrea LaFata, Mady Schuman, Monty Farber, Amy Zerner, Allison Silver, Julie Feldman, Rakesh Nigam, Elizabeth Dew, Scott, Lori, and Justin Levine, Paulina Berse, Julia Haart, Rakesh Nigam, Elizabeth Dew, Daniel Padnos, Andrea and Maynard Hellman, Michael and Bernadette Olsen, Vinay Tack, Edna Kapenhas and Michael Valdes, Roger and Ilene Schiel, Minerva Perez, Tien Ho So, Rita Bonicelli, Rachel Goldberg, Cathy Norman, Norman Yojy, Leslie Grand, and Linda Bieniewicz, Liz Derringer, Phyllis Chase, Dr. Paul Trotta, Dr. Gary and Karen Boxer, Jody and Jack Wasserman, Howie and Sherri Lippman.

Photo’s taken by Roger Sichel

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Entertainment

Come Celebrate Harry Peters Birthday at Harry Potter: The Exhibition

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In the first Harry Potter story, The Sorcerer’s Stone, Harry turns 11 on July 31st. In honor of his birthday, Harry Potter: The Exhibition at 50 West 34th Street, is celebrating with a variety of birthday treats and specials for visitors, including: free admission for anyone named “Harry” , $11 ticket special for everyone else, with code HPBDAY2024 (on sale now!), free ice cream for visitors between 11am – 1pm , one-of-a-kind commemorative birthday buttons  and ticket giveaways & contests with Z100 host Crystal Garcia.


Harry Potter: The Exhibition
is the record-breaking exhibition taking visitors of all ages on a one-of-a-kind journey celebrating the entire Wizarding World and includes some of the most iconic moments from the beloved books and films of Harry Potter and Fantastic Beasts. Upon entry, everyone is given an exhibition wristband for a personalized experience using best-in-class immersive design and technology. From selecting a Hogwarts house (either Gryffindor, Hufflepuff, Ravenclaw, or Slytherin) to picking your wand and Patronus, visitors will be able to create their own, uniquely magical moments while earning points for their house with each interactive activity.

Harry Potter: The Exhibition closes August 11, 2024, so now is the perfect time to visit.

 

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Art

A Midsummer Night’s Scheme: An Artistic Fusion in Tribeca

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In the heart of Tribeca, during the spirited celebration of LGBTQ+ Pride Month, an immersive installation titled “A Midsummer Night’s Dream” has enraptured the design and art community of New York City. This unique collaboration, inspired by Shakespeare’s illustrious play, is a triumphant partnership melding Brazilian Mid-Century Modern furniture, contemporary fine art, and exquisitely handmade carpets. The exhibition, a confluence of Found Collectibles, Nicolas Auvray Gallery, and Carini, is a testament to their shared vision, creating a mesmerizing tableau that celebrates both historical and modern artistic expressions.

From left: Guy Griggs, Greg Ventra, Joseph Carini, Friday Jones, Carlos Saavedra

The opening night, an event of sublime enchantment, saw over 150 guests—including collectors, interior designers, architects, and design aficionados—gathered to bask in the sophisticated ambiance of Carini’s Tribeca showroom. The exhibit, running through July 22nd, beckons visitors from Monday to Friday, 10 AM to 6 PM, at 335 Greenwich Street #A, New York, NY 10013.

Getting a ‘Puck-ture’ perfect moment with this midsummer mischief-maker.

Rodrigo Salem, founder of Found Collectibles, eloquently captured the essence of the event: “We aimed to showcase the coexistence of Brazilian mid-century modern collectible design, beautiful rugs, and contemporary fine art. The result is an elegant, harmonious, stunning aesthetic fusion.”

Brazilian mid-century design enshrined among tapestries and fine art.

Nicolas Auvray Gallery, a vibrant beacon in Chelsea, New York, continues to be a crucible for artistic dialogue and creativity. Formerly known as Galerie L’Atelier, the gallery has metamorphosed into a dynamic space where traditional and contemporary art forms converge, reflecting the richness and complexity of the human experience. Under the guidance of Nicolas Auvray, whose journey from corporate executive to esteemed curator is itself a narrative of artistic passion, the gallery presents an eclectic mix of paintings, sculptures, photography, and mixed media, each piece a thread in the intricate tapestry of human expression.

Framed by striking textile design, ALBEN’s post-modern Venus de Milo overlooks a stunning vintage dining set.

Eric Ceccarini’s evocative photography from his “AMNIOS” series with its naturalistic light and striking sexuality, and ALBEN’s postmodern “Venus de Milo” sculpture, a reimagined configuration of crushed Coke cans, were among the highlights.

As Puck would have it, juicy color and textures abound throughout the exhibition.

The carpets, suspended like tapestries, epitomized the artistry of Carini. Founded in 1997 by Joe Carini and Aurelie Lang, Carini NYC has long been at the forefront of the carpet design revolution, marrying traditional Tibetan knotting techniques with visionary design. Joe Carini’s dedication to natural dyes and authentic weaving practices underscores the company’s commitment to creating pieces that are both timeless and contemporary, drawing on ancient traditions to inform modern aesthetics.

Visually arresting displays surround rare vintage Brazilian collectibles.

Photographer Carlos Saavedra captured the spirit of the opening night, remarking, “It was wonderful to see all these different people from exciting worlds—fine art, fashion, antique collectibles, and textiles—coming together in this space we all created together and enjoying each other. There were so many countries and cultures represented; everyone just loved the space!”

Exhibition curators from left: Rodrigo Salem, Nicolas Auvray and Joseph Carini

Notable guests included designers Juan Montoya and Ernesto de la Torre, designer Bryan McCarthy, and Ben Genocchio, Editor in Chief of InCollect, each adding their unique flair to an evening of cultural confluence and artistic celebration.

In true Capote fashion, the event was a soirée where art and design waltzed together, a midsummer night’s dream come to life in the vibrant heart of New York City.

A Midsummer Night’s Dream” through July 22nd

Carini

335 Greenwich Street #A, 

New York, NY 10013

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Events

Food Network New York City Wine & Food Festival Returns

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The Food Network New York City Wine & Food Festival presented by Invesco QQQ (NYCWFF) unveils the 17th annual lineup featuring a groundbreaking expansion into Brooklyn this October 17-20, 2024. The Festival is set to offer all new programming and an unforgettable experience to support its charitable partner God’s Love We Deliver, New York City’s only provider of life-sustaining meals and nutrition counseling to those affected by severe and chronic illness.

Fan-favorite events such as the Grand Tasting and Pier Parties will now be anchored in one, sprawling 450,000 sq. ft. covered location at the new Invesco QQQ Campus at Brooklyn Army Terminal. This monumental shift, made possible through our dynamic partnership with Invesco QQQ, not only consolidates the Festival’s signature events into one expansive venue but also serves as a testament to the innovative culinary landscape thriving in one of New York City’s largest boroughs. Adding to the excitement, a dedicated NYCWFF Ferry powered by Invesco QQQ will be accessible from Downtown Manhattan for all ticket holders, providing a seamless way for Festival goers to travel between events held in Manhattan and Brooklyn with the NYC Ferry.

“Partnering with our new presenting sponsor, Invesco QQQ, has empowered us to craft an even more spectacular lineup of locations, events, and talent this year all in one expansive new campus in Brooklyn,” said Lee Brian Schrager, Festival Founder & Director. “We’re not just moving venues; we’re intentionally embracing Brooklyn’s rich culture – something I’ve wanted to do for years and inviting its talented chefs to join us on this culinary journey. Our aim is to provide them with an unparalleled platform to showcase their talent to a wider audience. We can’t wait to write this chapter with both our loyal supporters and new participants from the community of Brooklyn.”

“Each year, we look forward to NYCWFF’s return to celebrate the remarkable culinary talent we have across all five boroughs, affirming New York City’s status as a global culinary capital,” said Nancy Mammana, CMO and Interim CEO of New York City Tourism + Conventions. “We’re particularly excited to spotlight the festival’s expansion to Brooklyn. The vibrant talent of the borough will take center stage, showcasing the diversity that makes it a truly aspirational destination for food lovers around the world.”

“God’s Love We Deliver is thrilled to have such a spectacular lineup at this year’s Festival!” said David Ludwigson, President & CEO of God’s Love We Deliver. “With the move to Brooklyn, we are excited, as the exclusive charity partner, to raise awareness for our life-affirming program in this beloved borough, in which more than a quarter of the people we serve live.”

In celebration of the Festival’s new home, NYCWFF will kick off Thursday, October 17 with headlining event Brooklyn Eats & Beats featuring celebrated Brooklyn chefs like Esther Choi, Billy Durney, Sean Feeney, Mark Iacono, Michael Solomonov and 25 of Brooklyn’s iconic restaurants. Cultural icons Dr. Dre and Snoop Dogg will be on-hand serving up their premium ready-to-drink cocktail Gin & Juice By Dre and Snoop.

The return of the celebrated Culinary Demonstrations presented by HexClad, promising a feast for the senses with an impressive lineup of talent. This year’s Festival will feature renowned chefs and personalities, including Katie Lee, Marc Murphy, Alex Guarnaschelli, Duff Goldman, television icons Tamron Hall, Al Roker and daughter Courtney Laga Roker and many others. Attendees can look forward to an array of engaging and informative demonstrations, where these culinary stars will showcase their skills, share their expertise, and celebrate the rich tapestry of flavors that define the world of food.

Rachael Ray returns to host the Blue Moon Burger Bash presented by Pat LaFrieda Meats and for the first time ever, previous burger Champions like six time winner Josh Capon, Pig Beach, Black Tap and Le Rivage will take on new Challengers like John Fraser, Nowon, and Hav + Mar. Put your dancing shoes on because Bobby Flay will host a Triple Threat Dance Party presented by Treasure Cave alongside Tiffany Derry, Michael Voltaggio, and Brooke Williamson with every ticket purchaser receiving a copy of Bobby’s newest cookbook, Bobby Flay: Chapter One. Those looking to learn from today’s top content creators about the latest trends and engage in thought-provoking discussions on the intersection of food, culture and tech should grab tickets to FoodieCon® presented by Fratelli Beretta taking place at Brooklyn’s Industry City featuring Nadia Caterina Munno (@The_PastaQueen), Jack’s Dining Room (@jacksdiningroom), Rob Li (@broccoliraab), Olivia Tiedemann (@Oliviatied), Arya Hamedani (@aryahungry_) and many more!

New venue Hall Des Lumières, Manhattan’s largest permanent center for digital art and custom-curated immersive experiences located in a landmarked building in the Financial District, will feature Ciao House: An Italian Tasting hosted by Gabriele Bertaccini and Alex Guarnaschelli, Mediterranean Mezze Brunch hosted by Michael Symon presented by Genova Premium Tuna, Steak & Whiskey presented by A.1. Sauce hosted by Robert Irvine and Tacos & Tequila.

Steps away at The Lawn Club in The Seaport, American actress and Founder of Betty Booze, Blake Lively will host a The Betty BOOze Harvest Happy Hour. Set against the breathtaking panoramic views on the 102nd floor of the One World Trade Center, Aspire One World Observatory will host three extraordinary Festival events, including Asian Bites & Karaoke Nights hosted by Jet Tila, A Caviar & Cocktail Affair presented by Black River Caviar hosted by Scott Conant and Antonia Lofaso and Halloween Sweets & Treats hosted by Kardea Brown and Duff Goldman.

Looking to experience the diversity and vibrancy of NYC’s culinary scene? Choose from more than 30 one-night-only Intimate Dinners as part of the Bank of America Dinner Series prepared by the world’s most critically acclaimed chefs perfectly paired with a variety of high-end wines and spirits from the Festival’s exclusive provider, Southern Glazer’s Wine & Spirits. Prepare to embark on an adventure curated by 60+ culinary luminaries such as Martha Stewart, Jonathan Waxman, Geoffrey Zakarian, Eric Adjepong, Amanda Freitag, Marcus Samuelsson, Daniel Boulud, Camille Becerra, Andrew Zimmern, Maneet Chauhan, Ayesha Nurdjaja, Antonia Lofaso, Michael White and Jonathan Benno.

The presale period begins Wednesday, July 10 at 9 a.m. ET until Sunday, July 14 and offers 20 percent off events held at the Invesco QQQ Campus at Brooklyn Army Terminal. For more information and to purchase presale tickets, go to www.nycwff.org/presale. Tickets for the general public will be available Monday, July 15 at 9 a.m. ET.

Last year alone, the Festival’s charitable partner God’s Love We Deliver, delivered 4+ million free medically tailored meals to more than 15,000 individuals. Annually, the Festival generates millions of impressions for God’s Love We Deliver, raising awareness to grow the organization’s base of volunteers and clients. To date, NYCWFF has generated more than $14.8 million for its charitable causes with one hundred percent of the Festival’s net proceeds supporting its mission to EAT. DRINK. FEED NYC.

The Festival’s headquarter hotel, the Wall Street Hotel will offer attendees a vibrant and stylish base during the Festival week. Stay up to date by following the conversation all year long on Facebook, Instagram and X using @NYCWFF/#NYCWFF and on TikTok at @NYCWineFoodFestival.

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