Acclaimed opera singers waltz into Coral Gables for YPO gala
Several singers from the National Opera in Washington, D.C., made a rare performance at the 57th annual Young Patronesses of the Opera (YPO) gala “Tales from the Vienna Woods” at the Coral Gables Country Club.
Concert pianist Roberto Berrocal began the Nov. 3 program with a performance of Concert Arabesques on motifs by Johann Strauss on a grand piano. Soprano Maria Antunez of the National Opera in Washington, tenor Martin Nusspaumer and coloratura soprano Maria Aleida Rodriguez also honored the timeless music of Strauss with arias from the Viennese repertoire, while bejeweled ladies in gloves and gowns waltzed with black-tie clad gentlemen to classics like, By the Beautiful Blue Danube.
Guests swirled to the uplifting music in order to raise funds for the YPO and its mission to promote opera education.
In attendance were many of the city’s social and music elite, such as Susan Danis, general director and CEO of the Florida Grand Opera; Ramon Tebar, music director of Florida Grand Opera; Denise Courshon, Florida Grand Opera director of major gifts; and concert pianist Marina Radiushina.
The evening began with a performance during the cocktail hour by a Florida Grand Opera quartet that included concertmasters Scott Flavin, Alfredo Oliva and Evija Ozolins, which was generously donated and arranged by Scott Flavin, Florida Grand Opera concertmaster and professor of violin at the Frost School of Music.
Following the quartet’s performance, guests enjoyed an extravagant dinner in a Viennese decorated ballroom. Also during the evening’s festivities, there was a silent auction, which included a dazzling array of items and travel packages.
“Once again, the annual gala was a great success. The endless generosity of our sponsors, in both time and financial contributions, is vital to our continued goal of spreading our love for music and opera education throughout the community,” says Kristin Podack, president of YPO. “It is truly inspiring to see the hard work of our gala chairs Susan Feldman, Gail Piñon and Valerie Grace Ricordi, committee members and volunteers yield such an elegant and enchanting evening that benefits such a worthwhile cause.”
Among the sponsors and benefactors that contributed to the gala’s success were The Batchelor Foundation, Swanee DiMare, Bunny Bastian, Judy George, Dr. Sanford and Beatrice Ziff, Pamela W. Cole, Susan Danis, Ramon Tebar, Kristin and Dr. Eckhard Podack and Dante Carpenter.
For more information about YPO visit www.YPO-MIAMI.org.