WPA’s ‘Together in Art and Community’ Nets $600K

The Washington Performing Arts welcomed around 400 guests to its annual gala, “Together in Art and Community” at the newly renovated National Museum of Women in the Arts on March 15. The gala honored Héctor Torres and Jay Haddock Ortiz, who are loyal supporters, connectors and influencers that are generous with their time, resources and service, they have also been incredible thought partners in developing new programming and partnerships for Washington Performing Arts over the years.

The evening began with a VIP Reception and Silent Auction, held in the performance hall on the museum’s fifth floor. Attendees were treated to a performance by DC-based artist JChris, whose program, titled “Classics with a Twist” featured pop songs laced with Latin, Afro and Brazilian influences.

The evening continued with a cocktail hour held in the museum’s third-floor gallery. Guests mingled and enjoyed drinks while taking in the paintings and sculptures. Emcee Tamika Smith ushered in the main program and dinner portion of the gala, held in the great hall and mezzanine. Artists Jaime Lozano, Florencia Cuenca and Yahir Montes presented an upbeat program entitled “Broadway en Spanglish,” which included Broadway hits, such as “Burn” from “Hamilton.” Caterer Ridgewells served a three-course meal consisting of sweet corn chowder, a bread basket, mole short ribs with fingerling potatoes and green beans (or a vegetarian option) and créme caramel for dessert.

Celebrating its 30th anniversary, the Washington Performing Arts Children of the Gospel Choir presented a lively performance that included “This Little Light of Mine” and a “Spanglish” version of “Seasons of Love” from “Rent,” accompanied by Lozano, Cuenca and Montes.

Gala proceeds from the Fund the Future portion of the evening, as well as the auctions, totaled nearly $600,000.

The event concluded with an after party and dancing, featuring DJ Adrian Loving. Guests who wanted to enjoy a more quiet end to the evening were invited back up to the third-floor galleries to relax among the artwork.

Malaysian Ambassador Nazri Aziz, Datin Seri Haflin Nazri Aziz, Madame Teng Soo Fen Lui and Singaporean Ambassador Tuck Yew Lui. Photo by Kalorama Photography.

Annie Totah, Cidalia Luis-Akbar, WPA CEO and President Jenny Bilfield, Tina Co Mather, Sunny Alsop. Photo by Kalorama Photography.

Washington Performing Arts’s Children of the Gospel Choir. Photo by Kalorama Photography.

Board Member Nici Bush, Kevin Yen, WPA CEO and President Jenny Bilfield, Past Board Chair Tom Gallagher and Gordon Rush. Photo by Kalorama Photography.

Don and Rhona Friedman. Photo by Kalorama Photography.

Kathleen Buhle, Kelly Dibble and Trista and Ted Colbert. Photo by Kalorama Photography.


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