American Repertory Theater raises more than $1.4 million at annual gala

THEATER DISTRICT — More than 500 guests attended American Repertory Theater’s annual gala, which raised more than $1.4 million. The gala was held on Monday, April 1, 2019 on the stage of the Boch Center Wang Theatre.

The swanky soiree was co-chaired by RoAnn Costin, Fay and Bill Shutzer, and Lis Tarlow and Steve Kay and the evening will also include the presentation of the 2019 ART Angel Award to Harvard University President Emerita Drew Gilpin Faust in recognition of her tireless efforts to elevate the role of the arts on the university’s campus and beyond. As Professor Faust has said, “The arts invite a shift in perception and understanding that is at the heart of all learning. Projects that elevate the profile of the arts and art making enrich campus communities and encourage imagination and innovation – two essential drivers of human progress.”

Faust dedicated much of her tenure as President to developing a more vibrant arts culture at Harvard, including launching the Theater, Dance & Media concentration. Her own scholarship served as inspiration for ART’s participation in the National Civil War Project (2012-2015), an initiative that investigated the War and commemorated its 150th anniversary through productions, readings, panel discussions, and academic courses.

The event also recognized Diane Paulus, the Terrie and Bradley Bloom artistic director of the ART, who just marked 10 years of running the theater organization. To mark Paulus’ work as a theater director the evening included a special performance by four performers from shows that Paulus directed: Sumayya Ali, “The Gershwins’ Porgy & Bess,” Elizabeth Stanley, “Jagged Little Pill,” Desi Oakley, “Waitress,” and Betsy Wolfe, “Waitress.” The cast of “The Black Clown,” lead by the powerful voice of Davóne Tines, performed a couple of numbers from the show, which made its premiere at the ART last year.

Among the other notables attending the gala were: Harvard President Larry Bacow and his wife, Adele; David and Stacey Goel, who recently announced a $100 million donation to the facilitate a new research and performance space for the ART; Harvard Business School dean Nitin Nohria; Terrie and Bradley Bloom, who funded Paulus’ position; novelist Alice Hoffman; Harvard basketball coach Tommy Amaker and wife, Stephanie Pinder-Amaker; former Harvard Corporation member Joe O’Donnell; Harvard Corporation member Bill Lee; former Massport CEO Tom Glynn, now of Harvard; former Hill Holliday honcho Mike Sheehan, an ART trustee; US District Court Chief Justice Patti B. Saris; public relations principessa Jan Saragoni; cellist Yo-Yo Ma; Harvard Provost Alan Garber and Anne Yahanda; Barr Foundation co-founder Barbara Hostetter; developer John Moriarty; philanthropist Barbara Jordan; federal Judge Denise J. Casper; David Thorne, former US Ambassador to Italy and US Ambassador to San Marino; The Boston Globe’s Linda Henry; and, car magnate and arts philanthropist Ernie Boch.

All photos by Bill Brett

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