Dressed to impress and sporting festive masks of every size, shape and color, guests of the Sarasota Opera’s annual gala got to experience Italy without leaving The Ritz-Carlton, Sarasota ballroom Feb. 3. The gala’s theme, A Masked Ball: Carnevale di Venezia, transported attendees to a carnival atmosphere complete with masked performers from the Circus Arts Conservatory and performances by the event’s beneficiary, the Sarasota Youth Opera.
The Ritz ballroom was decked out with the theme, featuring gold masks illuminated in red lights and a stage with a backdrop of Venice, Italy. Guests participated in the fun with masks featuring feathers, beads and colorful glitter.
After dinner, Artistic Director Victor DeRenzi and General Director Richard Russell welcomed attendees. Guests then got their paddles warmed up with a live auction and a paddle raise for the Youth Opera and Education Fund before heading to the dance floor to dance to the sounds of the Tomkats Jazz Orchestra.