Austin Lyric Opera Celebrates 27th Season And Honors Magnificent Maestros
By Rose Betty Williams
Photography by Robert Godwin and Tony Spielberg
THE SCENE: Austin Lyric Opera enjoyed a winning trifecta with an Italian-themed 27th season repertoire; a spectacular Wine Dinner & Auction to toast Maestro Richard Buckley on his 10th year with the company and Giuseppe Verdi on his 200th birthday; and a special pre-opera dinner for Opera Volunteers International.
THE VIBE: Held at The Four Seasons Hotel, the ALO Guild Wine Dinner & Auction featured a champagne reception, a four-course dinner by Executive Chef Elmar Prambs and fabulous wine pairings by Twin Liquors. The amazing live and silent auctions, with auctioneer Harvey Kronberg at the helm, was crowned by a performance from internationally renowned soprano Joyce El-Khoury, who will be returning to Austin in January 2015 to sing the role of Juliet in Gounod’s Romeo & Juliet. The auctions included trips, vacation homes, extraordinary wines (all ranked on the Robert Parker scale between 90 and 98 points), jewelry, dinners, art, walk-on roles in ALO’s productions and more. The event proceeds of $230,000 support the ALO Guild mission to provide cultural nourishment to the Central Texas community and financial support to the Austin Lyric Opera.
THE CAUSE: ALO Board Chair Wendi Kushner, Board President Jon Nash and General Director Joe Spector along with ALO Guild Wine Dinner and Auction co-chairs Marcy Melanson and Cornelia Wood raised funds, fun and high acclaim for ALO’s current season productions such as Don Carlo, Tosca, Elixir of Love, and its education programs.