Los Angeles Ballet Gala
Following a performance of “Giselle” at the Los Angeles Ballet’s ”Season 5 Gala Celebration,” artistic director Colleen Neary surprised the audience at the Broad Stage in Santa Monica by naming Allyssa Bross and Christopher Revels as principal dancers, the first dancers so designated in the young ballet company’s history.
It was a night of firsts, starting with the May 28 Los Angeles Ballet Gala, the company’s first ever. Aptly christened “A Midsummer’s Night Dream,” the entire evening seemed magical, beginning with the beautiful and surreal ballet.
I’ve seen a lot of Giselles, including a 3D version at the movies, but this night’s performance seemed particularly exquisite. The magic continued into the night as well, as guests next entered an adjacent tent designed by Billy Butchkavitz with more than 20 crystal chandeliers, gilded furnishings and lush topiaries of roses.
Lori Milken, Jeanette Trepp and Ghada Irani chaired the event, which also featured a gourmet dinner by Wolfgang Puck and Hafner Vineyard wines. To boost proceeds, Mike Milken stepped onto the stage and auctioned off the opportunity to sponsor dancers for the 2011/2012 season, and given the generous, enthusiastic crowd, the gala wound up raising nearly $500,000.
Los Angeles Ballet Gala guests included Ryan Kavanaugh and his then-fiancee Britta Lazenga (they’ve since been married); former Governor Gray Davis and Sharon Davis, Linda and Paul Duttenhaver, Mary and Selim Zilkha, former US Ambassador to Uruguay Frank Baxter and Kathy Baxter, Joni and Larry Flax, Deborah and John Landis, Bari Milken Bernstein and Fred Bernstein, Cynthia and Ralph Finerman, Jennifer Bellah Maguire and Stephen Maguire, Leslie and Jack Kavanaugh, Catherine Kanner and Winston Chappell, John Landis and Deborah Nadoolman Landis, Mary and John Tu, Elizabeth and Jim Wiatt, and Candy Spelling.
Photo: Colleen Neary onstage following the performance (Credit: Ryan Miller/Capture Imaging, courtesy of the Los Angeles Ballet)
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Spring 2011 Highlight: Los Angeles Ballet Gala
Published Aug. 27, 2011 – Ellen Olivier, Society News LA