+ One good idea leads to another
Nothing benefits a charity more than a really creative idea — and this one is a beaut. It started at the Key to the Cure event Oct. 15, when Charlie Ann Syprett created one of 10 bras featured in the live auction. It was called “Life is a Bra of Cherries” and sold for $600 (the second-highest amount of the night) to David Shaver and Danielle Kanter. Kanter is a volunteer for The Wellness Community and came up with the idea of “The Sisterhood of the Traveling Bra” — so the bra made an appearance in the silent auction at The Wellness Community’s “Celebration of Hope” Wednesday, Oct. 21, an event co-chaired by non other than bra-maker Syprett and Valerie Powell-Stafford. Laurie Wolfe won it for $350 and “owns” the bra until Nov. 6, when it will be auctioned at the Sarasota Yacht Club Regatta’s “Make a Mark” event benefiting TWC. And, after that, it’s on to the Flight of Hope event March 19. Don’t you just love it?
+ A big night at the Asolo Rep
Board members of the Asolo Rep and Sarasota Ballet of Florida and their friends gathered in the lobby Friday, Oct. 23 for a special ceremony honoring benefactor Ulla R. Searing. Asolo Rep producing Artistic Director Michael Donald Edwards and Sarasota Ballet Director Iain Webb unveiled a photographic portrait with an inscription citing her “unparalleled commitment” to the arts and “extraordinary gifts.” The presentation took place two days after Searing’s birthday. Asked how old she is, she drew a big laugh by replying “a year older.”
In the crowd honoring this grande dame of Sarasota philanthropy: Scott George, Liz Groth, Nancy Markle, John Mason, Tammy Nabergall, Lee and Bob Peterson, Edie Winston and Sally Yanowitz. For many, it was a first opportunity to chat with Marshall Rousseau in his new role as interim director of the Ringling Museum.
On another note, it is not the purview of this column to review performances but a reviewer can’t say this and it needs saying. To see the dancers of Sarasota Ballet perform in “Contact” at the Asolo is to burst with pride at what this young company is accomplishing under the leadership of Webb. In choreography and movement that is not their daily bread, they simply shone. See the official review in Arts & Entertainment — whatever else you see this season, don’t miss “Contact.”
+ Friends in high, supreme places
WEDU CEO Dick Lobo and his wife, Caren, were recent guests at The White House for an invitation-only dinner celebrating Hispanic Heritage month and the PBS special “In Performance at the White House: Fiesta Latina.” The Lobos will be honored Nov. 11, at American Jewish Committee’s 2009 Civic Achievement Award Dinner, co-chaired by two of our town’s leading ladies, Gerri Aaron and Elaine Keating. Contact Brian Lipton at 365-4955, Ext. 104.
+ BT tidbits
Autumn leaves … Sarasota was in the Big Apple the weekend of Oct. 17. Bob and Lee Peterson and Harold Ronson attended the Metropolitan Opera’s weekend honoring 25-year patrons. Heather Dunhill and Ted Meekma went for Billie Jean King’s Women’s Sports Foundation’s party. And Asolo President Susan Buck, and her husband, Jim, had a whole gang of Asolo travelers in town on a theater trip produced by Jamie Schoenfeld, which included a meeting with actor Hugh Grant … Four of four … The final Beauty of Aging luncheon benefiting the Pines of Sarasota is coming up Nov. 5. Moderator is Teri Hansen; panelists are Audrey Coleman, Lillette Jenkins-Wisner, Alice Rau and Virginia Toulmin. Contact Becky Taylor at 955-6293 … A big deal on the Big Top … Circus Sarasota’s 2010 season will run from Feb. 12 to Feb. 22 and feature Nik Wallenda, great-grandson of Karl Wallenda. Act quickly and you can get tickets for the first five performances at 50% off. You must purchase prior to Nov. 1 at www.CircusSarasota.org; use the password BIGTOP ... Those women sure can party! … It seems only yesterday that there were multiple celebrations for Chris Pfahler’s birthday, and now Susan Jones is enjoying the same treatment, with a hot-pink (joint) birthday cake from Veronica Brady and Sally Schule at the Wine, Women and Shoes luncheon Friday and cupcakes, balloons and flowers (not to mention cheerleaders!) at CANDance Saturday … Bring more wine! … Dr. Burr Bakke, a “sole man” at WW&S, let slip to his manned table that the winemaker’s wine had all been consumed by 12:45 p.m. Fortunately, the Ritz-Carlton had plenty, and the party continued well after the luncheon was over …