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Joel Grey and Liza Minnelli at Kravit's center gala. Photo by: Richard Graulich


Joel Grey and Liza Minnelli. Photo by: Richard Graulich


The Lights Shine Bright
On Kravis Center’s 15th Anniversary Celebration Gala Benefit


They say the neon lights shine bright on Broadway, but bright lights, big stars and glittering fashions were also to be found at the Kravis Center’s 15th Anniversary Celebration Gala Benefit on Feb. 10. And magic was in the air.

This year’s Gala per formance, Back to Back to Broadway, created especially for the Kravis Center’s anniversary celebration, starred Liza Minnelli and Joel Grey, Academy Awar d winners for the 1972 film Cabaret, along with Tony Awar d winner Brian Stokes Mitchell (Ragtime, Kiss Me, Kate) and Metropolitan Opera soprano Harolyn Blackwell (West Side Story, Candide). The performance also featured choreography by Baayork Lee, one of the original cast members of Broadway’s A Chorus Line who is responsible for restaging Michael Bennett’s choreography for the current smash New York revival of that show.

The Gala Benefit began with a cocktail reception in the Carl and Ruth Shapiro Founders’ Room and ended with a black-tie dinner dance in the Cohen Pavilion’s Weiner Banquet Center, which was designed by Rafanelli Events to reflect the evening’s Broadway theme.

The evening of celebration was dedicated in loving memory of Mr. Julian Cohen, a longtime member of the Kravis Center’s Board of Directors and one of the Center’s most generous supporters, who died on February 8.

During the Gala, the Kravis Center recognized its “leading ladies” for their efforts and dedicated ser vice over the past 15 years and for their continued support of the mission of the Kravis Center. The members of the Honorary Gala Committee were: Carol Cohen, Patricia Cook, Lore Dodge, Renate Dreyfoos, Elaine Gimelstob, Nicki Harris, Elaine Langone, Hillie Mahoney, Chris Marden, Helen Persson, Janna Rumbough, Mary Schott and Kathryn Vecellio. During dinner, Kravis Center Chairman Alexander W. Dreyfoos gave special recognition to Amin and Julie Khoury who made a $1 million gift to the Kravis Center’s Encore Capital Campaign, the fund-raising effort to pay for the Cohen Pavilion expansion project.

Mr. Dreyfoos thanked the couple on behalf of fellow board members and presented the Khourys with a Tiffany & Co. tray as a memento that has traditionally been given to generous donors who contribute $1 million or more to the Encore Campaign.

Proceeds from the Kravis Center’s annual Gala Benefit make it possible for the Center to continue with programs that have introduced school children from five surrounding counties to the wonder of the per forming arts. The funds are also used to pr esent innovative programs such as master classes, lectures and performance opportunities for both children and adults. Ticket sales and rental r evenue alone do not cover the cost of operating a not-for -profit facility like the Kravis Center. It is only through generous contributions and benefits like the Gala that the Kravis Center continues to succeed in making the best of the performing arts available to the entire community.

Herbert and Elaine Gimelstob generously sponsored the public performance, Back to Back to Broadway. Grand Sponsors Lewis and Mary Schott and Carl and Ruth Shapiro sponsored the gala décor and dinner, respectively.

Other sponsors of the evening included Julian and Carol Cohen (dinner entertainment), Alexander and Renate Dreyfoos (dinnerdance or chestra), Kenneth and Elaine Langone (cocktail reception), Jane Mitchell (invitations and programs – design and printing), Paul and Marilyn Mulach (photography), Helen K. Persson (table centerpieces), Van Cleef & Arpels (dessert extravaganza) and The Breakers (bar and wine service).

Rafanelli Events and Tiffany & Co. provided special support, with additional support provided by Alan and Kathy Bleznak, Susan Bloom, John and Marianne Castle, Lawrence and Florence DeGeorge, John and Lore Dodge, Richard and Shirley Fennell, Joan Friedland, J. Ira and Nicki Harris, Sandra Heine, Howard and Michele Kessler, H. Irwin and Ellen Levy, Hillie Mahoney, Bill and Denise Meyer, Sanders and Sharon Orr, John and Bonnie Osher, Alfred and Gilda Slifka and Leo and Kathryn Vecellio.

701 OKEECHOBEE BOULEVARD ® WEST PALM BEACH, FLORIDA 33401 ® (561) 833-8300 ® FAX (561) 833-3901


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