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Black Tie International:
8th Annual On Our Toes in the Hamptons

 
Evidence, A dance Company in IFE My Heart 

Evidence, A Dance Company in IFE My Heart.  Photo by: Kurt Leggerd 


 

8th Annual On Our Toes in the Hamptons a Summer Delight

 

Ronald K. Brown's Evidence, A Dance Company Electrifies
 with Stunning Performance

 

 

Under blessedly sunny skies, Ronald K. Brown and his acclaimed Evidence, A Dance Company held its 8th Annual On Our Toes in the Hamptons on the sprawling grounds of the Hayground School in Bridgehampton. Always one of summer�s most eagerly anticipated events, the party draws supporters from all across the country for a festive afternoon benefitting Brown�s much loved dance troupe.

 

Despite predictions of thunderstorms, it was a picture perfect summer day as guests flowed into the renowned schools culinary, education and community center, Jeff�s Kitchen, for late afternoon cocktails. Chef David Martinez and his team at Harlem�s critically acclaimed 5 and Diamond Restaurant offered up platter after platter of delectable hors d�oeuvres including mini dogs in puff pastry, mac & cheese bites and Scottish smoked salmon on black bread with Citrus crème fraiche. To complement the tasty treats there were specialty cocktails from Belvedere and guests immediately got into their party mode.

 

Event Chair Dr. Ancy Verdier, Board Chairman Emeritus Reginald Van Lee, Vice-Chair Joanne Hill and Board Secretary Gail Monroe-Perry warmly welcomed guests to what has become the premiere African-American cultural and social event of the Hamptons season and an annual reunion of dance patrons. Among the first to arrive were Alicia & Dan Bythewood, Peg Alston & Burton Willis, Board members Dwayne Ashley, Monica F. Azare; Reginald Canal, Andrea Hoffman. Leslie Mays, Larry Satterfield and Jocelyn Taylor; Young Professionals Committee Chair Jenna Bond-Louden; Law & Order SVU star Tamara Tunie glamorous in a quintessentially Hamptons oversize straw hat with her husband jazz vocalist Gregory Generet and Essence Magazine Editrix Emerita Susan L. Taylor and her husband filmmaker and producer Khephra Burns.

 

After cocktails, throbbing drums signaled a call to the Main Tent for dinner and the start of the evening�s program. Guests quickly flooded the tent that was set up as an outdoor living room with bright white canvas sofas and lounges strewn around the spacious tent. Tabletops were adorned with masses of summer flowers by Bridgehampton Florist Michael Grim. Locally grown dahlias, cosmos, zinnias and sunflowers in vibrant hues added the right punch of color to the all white décor.

Numerous food stations decorated by Chef Martinez  with tropical fish, exotic birds and fairy tale horses and carriages carved from fruit lent a fanciful Midsummer Night�s Dream effect. Martinez and his professional staff offered a carving station featuring New York Strip Steak and grilled seasonal local vegetable platters, tomato vinaigrette, Herb roasted red bliss potatoes and Brussels sprouts with applewood smoked bacon. Additional stations served Spicy Chicken and Poached Salmon with Saffron broth served on a bed of arugula. Following the bountiful dinner, Gail Monroe Perry welcomed guests and thanked them profusely for their longtime commitment to Evidence, A Dance Company. She then introduced Dr. Ancy Verdier, this year�s Event Chair, to present awards to two dynamic individuals who have effected great change in their respective professions: artist, educator and activist Jon Snow, co-founder of the Hayground School and renowned financial advisor Lola C. West, Managing Director, WestFuller Advisors LLC.  Both made especially gracious speeches and cited the enormous gift of Evidence in chronicling the African Diaspora through storytelling and dance.
 

Within moments the audience witnessed first-hand, the amazing talents of Brown and his dance troupe as they performed the electrifying �Ife My Heart�, a signature piece for the company, which was built as the journey of three families to one destination: a place where the heart was open. Ife/My Heart was originally commissioned and performed by the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater in 2005.
 

The conclusion of the 15 minute piece was met with thunderous applause and a standing ovation. A smiling but breathless   Brown, humbly thanked the assembled guests and introduced the company including Waldean Nelson, Lilli Anne Tai, Clarice Young, Annique Roberts, Tislarm Bouie and Associate Artistic Director Arcell Cabuag.

 

Fabrice Armand took to the stage to begin the spirited live auction. Bidding was feverish for two extraordinary lifestyle experiences. Sonya Pankey snared the week at the exclusive Palmas del Mar in Puerto donated by Lawrence S. Campbell, San Juan, P.R. & Ethan Shapiro & Associates LLC. Annette Mitchell scored the extraordinary Lifestyle experience which included his & hers Baume Mercier watches and his & hers Rebecca Minkoff travel bags as well as  four days in Barbados at the exquisite Crane Residential Resort, airfare & tickets to the international Food Rum & Wine Festival courtesy of Barbados Tourism Authority. An online auction of luxury goods and one-of-a-kind experiences organized by Tybie Etoy Dotson continues at  www.CharityBuzz.com     

 

Wrapping up, Board member Reginald Canal led a Bricks & Mortar balloon sale to support specific needs of the company from costumes to sets to administration. Within minutes, the tent resembled a joyous carnival with guests snapping up all the balloons offered for bid. With the final balloon sold, Canal invited all the dancers back to the floor for the always hot finale to the evening, dancing with the dancers. Hundreds took to the floor and the dancing continued - thanks to the hot sounds of Diversified Sounds - well beyond its official end time with dancers refueling at the dessert buffets which were constantly replenished!

 

Seen pounding the parquet were model Marco Candini, Susan L. Taylor and Khephra Burns, 5 and Diamond owners Lia Sanfilippo & Selene Martinez, designer Berry Brown, Solonje Burnett-Loucas, Brie Bythewood, Christopher Harvell & Dr. Lezli, Levene Harvell, Kelly Mitchell, Obi Onyeagoro and Erin L. Patten, Omar Karriem, Nicholas Anderson, Corey McCathern, Jon Snow and wife Kathy Engel, Clint Taylor, Jennifer Streaks, Tia Walker and scores more.

 

In just a few years, On Our Toes in The Hamptons, the dream of Susan L. Taylor author &Editorial Director Emerita Essence Magazine and Reginald Van Lee Sr. V.P., Booz Allen Hamilton in bringing Black culture to the Hamptons, has evolved to become the only continuous, major African-American cultural event of the Hamptons summer season.

 

Corporate sponsors for On Our Toes?were Belvedere Vodka, Booz Allen Hamilton, FedEx and Prudential. Sponsors included Zaid Abdul-Aleem, Monica Azare, Khephra Burns and Susan L. Taylor, Dr. Jeanine Downie and Michael Heningburg, Joanne E. Hill, Loida N. Lewis, Gail Monroe-Perry, Larry Satterfield, Jennifer Streaks, Reginald Van Lee, Dr. Ancy Verdier and Verizon.

 

Event sponsors included: Peg Alston & Burton Willis, Chandra Anderson, Twenty-First Century Foundation, Monica Azare, Darria L. Ball, Tinika M. Brown, Esq., Valerie S. Brown, Alicia Bythewood, Judy Chambers, Doreen Chambers-Monrougie, Glenn E. Davis, Allen Harvey, Luisa Herrera & Manny Garcia, Shaun Massiah & Deirdre Stanley, Leila Schultz & Jack Walsh of BRIC Arts Media Bklyn, Paula Taylor and Joseph Welsh.  

 

Business Development Committee: Fabrice Armand, Christy Bareijsza, Tina Bernard, Keenan Davis, Dr. Erika Faust,  Latoya Henry, Demetria Lucas, Ron Myers, James Nixon

 

Live Auction Committee included Reginald Canal, Andrea Hoffman and Gail Monroe-Perry. Online Luxury Auction is headed up by Tybie Etoy Dotson.


For more information about Evidence, A Dance Company visit www.evidencedance.com

 

 

 
Joyce Brooks

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