The Joffrey Gala Raises Over $1 Million!

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The Joffrey Gala 2010 was held recently at Union Station. This was a new venue for this event so I didn't know what to expect but Co-chairs Yolanda and Jason Tyler and Honorary Chairs, Anne and Burt Kaplan, planned one of the most magical evenings in recent memory for almost 1000 guests.

The night began with an exquisite performance by the Joffrey Ballet that included "Carnival in Venice" performed by 13 year old dance prodigy and Academy student, Houston Thomas.

Next on the bill was "Confetti", choreographed by Gerald Arpino, "Paquita" performed by Christine Rocas and Jonathan Dummar with students from the Academy of Dance.

Dancers from the Exelon Strobel Step-Up Program performed "Inferno" choreographed by Joffrey dancer Derrick Agnoletti. Then an excerpt from one of my favorites, "Othello", was performed by April Daley and Fabrice Calmels.

Following this was a pas de deux from "Le Corsaire" danced by Victoria Jaiani and Miguel Blanco. The last piece, which is part of the upcoming Spring series which runs from April 28th--May 9th, "Crossed", was choreographed by Jessica Lang and was hauntingly brilliant.

Trolleys laden with champagne transported guests to Union Station where the venue had been magnificently transformed by design genius, Bill Heffernon. The long, straight tables laden with votives and the unique light fixtures reminded me of the great dining hall at Hogwarts. Simply magical!

The Gentlemen of Leisure performed and the delicious menu was courtesy of George Jewell. The event raised almost $1.2 million for the Joffrey Ballet and its many outreach programs. www.Joffrey.org (Fabulous event photos by Caitlin Saville and Steve Starr.)

CHICAGO TRIBUNE VIDEO

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