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Save the Date 2012 Old
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Black Tie International:
Dana's Angels Research Trust Gala Benefit & Concert


Natalie Cole







Saturday, May 5, 2012, at The Palace Theatre, Stamford, Connecticut


L.O.V.E. now stands for D.A.R.T!  Dana’s Angels Research Trust (DART) is excited to announce its annual Gala Benefit and Concert on Saturday, May 5, 2012, with nine-time Grammy® award winner Natalie Cole, at the Palace Theatre in Stamford, Conn. The concert will be kicked-off with a Gala Benefit that includes an elegant cocktail reception with a pasta bar by World-Famous RAO’s Italian Restaurant, silent and live auction items, and hosts Kathie Lee and Frank Gifford.  Gala tickets are $350 and up and are available online at .  Concert tickets are $150, $95 and $65 and are available through the Stamford Center for the Arts Box Office at  or by calling 203-325-4466.

2012 marks DART’s tenth year as a non-profit focused on Niemann-Pick type C research.  Throughout the years, DART has been blessed to have the support of incredible performers to its cause, such as America, Richard Dreyfuss, Rob Mathes, Smokey Robinson and Frankie Valli, who have all performed at the DART Gala Benefits. Kathie Lee and Frank Gifford are also long-time supporters of DART, hosting each annual benefit, along with Regis Philbin, who joined Kathie Lee on stage last year, and a few years prior.  Once again, Michelle Phillips from The Mamas and The Papas fame, will act as honorary chair.  And this year Natalie Cole will be a very special treat. 

Natalie Cole rocketed to stardom with her debut album Inseparable, earning her a #1 single with “This Will Be (An Everlasting Love),” and two Grammy awards for Best New Artist, as well as Best Female R&B Vocal Performance. More hit singles followed, including “Sophisticated Lady (She’s A Different Lady),” “I’ve Got Love on My Mind,” “Someone That I Used to Love,” “I Live For Your Love” and a remake of Bruce Springsteen’s “Pink Cadillac.” In 1991 Natalie Cole took a bold leap that would change her life and career forever. Already a highly successful R&B artist, she amazed everyone when she recorded Unforgettable…With Love, an album of standards from the American Songbook that included a duet with her late father, Nat King Cole, on the title track. The album spent five weeks at #1 on the pop charts, earned six Grammy awards (including Song, Record and Album of the Year) and sold more than 14 million copies worldwide. As an award-winning singer, songwriter and performer Natalie Cole has proven to be one of the most beloved musical artists of all time.

“DART is thrilled to have Natalie Cole headline this year’s Gala Benefit and concert,” noted Phil and Andrea Marella, founders of Dana’s Angels Research Trust.  “2012 marks the tenth anniversary of DART, and what better way to honor this occasion than with one of the most ‘unforgettable’ performers of our time.  In addition, ‘L.O.V.E.’ is one of our daughter Dana’s favorite songs, so it will be extra special to our family, and all of our supporters, to have Natalie sing that song.”

Dana’s Angels Research Trust is a non-profit organization that funds research into a rare disease, Niemann-Pick type C (NPC), a fatal, cholesterol storage disease affecting children.  Two of the Marella’s four children, Dana and Andrew, have NPC.  Most children who suffer from NPC die in their early teens, but DART has helped change that fate.  As an all volunteer organization, more than 95 percent of the funds expended are channeled directly into supporting pivotal NPC research; research that may also help millions of people suffering from HIV/Aids, heart disease, stroke, Alzheimer’s disease  and other disorders that appear to be related to cholesterol. 

The Marella children have been on different treatments that have helped keep the disease at bay – especially for Andrew, who is currently 12 years old and was diagnosed early and started treatment at a young age.  His sister Dana, who is now 18, was not diagnosed until she was eight.  She is now confined to a wheelchair, no longer talks, and requires complete care, but because of some successful treatment, she is still able to attend school. 

To date, DART has raised more than $2.3 million toward the search for a cure for NPC.  DART is particularly proud of its commitment as a founding member of a unique, collaborative drug development program called SOAR-NPC or Support Of Accelerated Research.  Working with other NPC families and research institutions, SOAR’s collaborators have two drug trials already to their credit, and a third planned for fall 2012. 

To learn more about Dana’s Angels Research Trust (DART), and to purchase Gala tickets to the May 5th DART Gala Benefit and Concert with Natalie Cole, visit or  To purchase concert only tickets, visit .


Joyce Brooks

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