The Phillips Collection Pairs with Sofitel to Honor Renoir’s Luncheon of the Boating Party

October 19, 2011

The centerpiece of Duncan Phillip’s collection has been returned to its original location in the Main Gallery to celebrate the 90th anniversary of America’s first museum of modern art. The Sofitel Washington, D.C. Lafayette celebrated the occasion with Renoir-inspired cuisine prepared by Chef Olivier Perret and other enticements. Phillips Director Dorothy Kosinski expressed her delight that the painting is displayed close to its original placement amid works by Braque, Cézanne, Monet and Picasso. Duncan Phillips’s 1923 purchase set a record price for the time. [gallery ids="102423,121822,121815,121828,121832" nav="thumbs"]

18th Annual Nyumbani Benefit & Auction

Over 400 guests attended the 18th Annual Benefit and Auction for Nyumbani at the Ritz Carlton Hotel on Sept. 30 to celebrate Nyumbani’s success in transforming the lives of thousands of Kenyan children and their families affected by the HIV virus. What began as a hospice for HIV+ orphans has evolved into a broad based support organization which has enabled HIV+ children to become educated, grow to adulthood, and lead productive lives. With Kathleen Matthews serving as Mistress of Ceremonies, the evening’s program honored Dr. Ryan Brunette, Dr. Gary Cohen, Krista Thompson and Conrad Person for their efforts in the recent completion of a state-of-the- art diagnostic laboratory on the grounds of the Nyumbani Children’s Home. Barbara Albert received the John and Patty Noel Humanitarian Award for spearheading fundraising efforts. Sister Mary Owens, Nyumbani’s Executive Director, spoke of recent accomplishments and of future challenges. Maryland Congressman Chris Van Hollen described his visit to Nyumbani this summer and his two son’s experiences serving as volunteers there. [gallery ids="100313,108017,108038,108022,108034,108027,108031" nav="thumbs"]

The Great Gatsby Prohibition Party

The Women’s Committee of the Washington Ballet took to the dance floor to music by DJ Pitch One at the U.S. Chamber of Commerce on Sept. 30. Mandy Delk and Elizabeth Wrege were event chairs for the Annual Ballet Soirée which included a suite from The Great Gatsby danced by Washington Ballet company members. Women’s Committee member Charo Abrams and her husband Larry provided a scrumptious buffet through their RSVP catering. Mont Blanc was a lead sponsor. Howard Parzow was the live auctioneer for items that included holidays in Greece, Paris and Turkey and dining opportunities with Artistic Director Septime Webre and Michel Richard at Citronelle as well as “kitchen theater” with Septime and Patrick O’Connell and The Inn at Little Washington. [gallery ids="100314,108057,108052,108047,108066,108042,108070,108037,108074,108078,108032,108062" nav="thumbs"]

St. John’s Blessing of the Animals

The Blessing of the Animals at St. John’s Georgetown Parish on O Street is always a joyous occasion. This year’s event took place on the unusually chilly afternoon of Oct. 2 on the church lawn. Treasured pets happily greeted their friends from various parks and neighborhood jaunts and seemed to recognize that this was a special occasion to honor St. Francis and his protection. Charles DeSantis’s basset Bella bayed on key throughout the gathering hymn All Things Bright and Beautiful. The event is canine dominant but at least two cats joined in and an unusual addition was Ben Sutherland’s leopard gecko Screech. Pets were individually blessed and received St. Francis medals. Treats for all followed in Blake Hall. [gallery ids="99242,104124,104119,104133,104114,104137,104109,104141,104104,104145,104099,104129" nav="thumbs"]

Olney Ballet Theatre Gala Honors Mary Day

The Olney Ballet Theatre 20011 Gala celebrated 50 years of Mary Day’s Classic The Nutcracker, Sept. 17 OBT’s Artistic Director Pat Berrend was long associated with Mary Day, founder of The Washington Ballet. She recalled that Miss Day’s Nutcracker opened at Constitution Hall with the National Symphony Orchestra. The vibrant gala included choreography by Aaron Jackson and performances by many of Miss Day’s dancers now with leading dance companies. OBT is a non-profit performing arts, educational organization providing training to young dancers, who perform in the theater before live audiences. [gallery ids="100315,108067,108079,108072,108076" nav="thumbs"]

Embassy Series Presents Music of the Vilna Ghetto Experience

On Sept. 15, The Embassy Series opened its new season with a series of moving tributes in conjunction with the Lithuanian government’s declaration of 2011 as The Year of Remembrance for Victims of the Holocaust, with performances in Washington, New York City and Vilnius, Lithuania. The evening featured acclaimed baritone Jerome Barry with award-winners pianist Edvinas Minkstimas and violinist Peter Sirotin. “It is truly amazing that despite the great calamity befalling the Jewish people in Vilnius, they still did lead an inspired life replete with theater and musical presentations,” Barry said, who founded the Embassy Series in 1994 as a way to promote cultural exchange through “musical diplomacy.” [gallery ids="100316,108077,108080" nav="thumbs"]

Last Kiss of Summer 8 Gala

It is hard to believe that Last Kiss of Summer in support of Second Chance Employment Services recently held at The Four Seasons Hotel is the eighth such gala. ABC7/WJLA-TV anchor Alison Starling was master of ceremonies at an evening of silent and live auctions, dinner and dancing. SCES Board Chair Ronald S. Perlman, M.D., hailed SCES as a “one stop show” to empower women. Ludy Green founded the non-profit organization in 2002 to promote financial security for at-risk women and their children through free and professional comprehensive employment training and placement services. SCES has helped more than 3,000 women and placed more than 800 clients in meaningful long-term employment positions. Already serving clients nationwide from its D.C. base, SCES is opening sites in Palm Beach and Los Angeles. [gallery ids="100317,108081" nav="thumbs"]

Georgetown Village Launches

Alan and Nancy Taylor Bubes opened their doors on a recent rainy evening to hail Georgetown Village. The soon to open non-profit membership organization will provide support and physical and social activities allowing participants to remain at home rather than relying on relatives or an assisted living facility. Founder and chair Sharon Lockwood enthusiastically introduced members of her board of directors and advisory board and reported that 152 members had pledged, and more than 90 offered to be volunteers. More good news is that an experienced executive director has been identified and is expected to be hired within the month. Guests departed with daffodil bulbs and treats from Georgetown Cupcake. [gallery ids="100318,108082,108088,108084" nav="thumbs"]

Friends of Rose Park Rally in Style

Dr. James D’Orta, the current owner of the legendary N Street residence formerly home to Averell and Pamela Harriman, welcomed The Friends of Rose Park on Oct. 6 to raise funds to support the beloved Georgetown oasis. The host paid tribute to Georgetown doyenne Frida Burling, who served as the evening’s honorary host, a radiant 96 years old and going strong. Rose Park enhances Georgetown as it provides families and their pets with space to romp and thrive. [gallery ids="100328,108522,108543,108527,108539,108532,108536" nav="thumbs"]

Living In Pink Celebrates Its Cause . . . and Life

October 17, 2011

With smart, strong women in the Fairmont Washington Hotel ballroom, the fight against breast cancer was on during Living in Pink’s eighth annual luncheon and boutique, Sept. 23. ABC7/WJLA-TV anchorman Greta Kreuz introduced the awardees and speakers. Presentation of the Living in Pink Award was awarded posthumously to Thomas J. Sanzaro, M.D., and accepted by Mrs. Kathy Sanzaro with remarks by Colette Magnant, M.D. The Noel Soderberg-Evans Award was presented to Christine Teal, M.D., by Jack Evans, Ward 2 councilman. Guest speaker was Pamela Peeke, M.D., M.P.H. Founded in 2004 by two-time breast cancer survivor and mother of four, Michele Conley, Living in Pink is set to help find a cure for breast cancer so that the next generation of women will not have to endure the emotional and physical pain of breast cancer surgery and treatment. [gallery ids="100322,108099,108097" nav="thumbs"]