“A huge, smashing success!”
That was how one Bronxville School parent described the festivities at last Saturday because in a single night, the “Staging Our Future” benefit raised $470,000 towards rebuilding the school’s auditorium, which, as you can see in this video, is in major need of repair.
Event co-chairs Louise Parzick and Priscilla Newman put together a heck of a show – the evening kicked off with music from the school’s a-cappella group, SHA!cappella, who serenated guests as they arrived and quickly packed the venue – 550 tickets were sold in total.
Later, Class of 2011 alumnae Lydia Ciaputa and Hannah Geiling, accompanied by Jonathan Faiman on piano, entranced the crowd with songs from the musical “Wicked”.
The evening’s focus, though, was on fundraising, primarily through a silent and a live auction, with bidding for the former conducted through Blackberry-like handhelds, and with real-time results displayed on screens throughout the country club.
The action really took off when another alumna, Melissa Gagen, of Christie’s, took the stage for the live auction, which included two “Super Bowl in The Big Easy” packages, donated by Bronxville residents Jane Skinner and NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell, who was making the rounds at the party.
Another highlight – Bronxville resident Alex Witt of MSNBC gave a moving speech and introduced the aforementioned video, which was produced by locals Tana and Alan Weiss of Alan Weiss Productions. Indeed, many local businesses played key sponsorship roles, including , Infinia Group, , Pepe Motors, People’s United Bank, Valerie Wilson Travel, and Westchester’s Ridge Hill, among many others.
And that probably was the most salient take-away from the evening – parents, teachers, administrators, local businesses, and 70 volunteers working together for a common cause. And, despite the rousing success of the event, there is still work to be done to reach the project goal of $3 million.
As event co-chair Parzick said, “this is a call to action. We are so thrilled with the overwhelming community support for this urgently needed project. Brick by brick, we hope to preserve the history and legacy of the Auditorium and pay tribute to its 87 years of awards, music and theater contained within its walls.”
Additionally, there will be an informational session with Dr. David Quattrone, Superintendent of the Bronxville Schools, on May 30 at 7 p.m. in…you guessed it…the .