Celebrations of the Arts

Posted by Maryanne Salvat On January - 15 - 2014
National YoungArts Foundation Backyard Ball Honors Zaha Hadid, Rita Moreno, & Andrew Rannells

Rita Moreno and Rosie Perez

By: Mary Jo Almeida-Shore 

On Saturday, January 11, the National YoungArts Foundation culminated its 33rd annual YoungArts Week with a bash in its gorgeous, shiny-new campus. The Backyard Ball, featured a Gala and special alumni performances that brought together more than 800 notable guests to celebrate the artistic excellence of the 2014 YoungArts finalists for the first time at the beautiful former site of the historic Bacardi Tower and Museum buildings. The evening raised over $1.5 million to be used directly to support YoungArts, whose mission is to support the development of talented young artists in the literary, performing, visual, and design arts. 

The Gala and performance portions of the evening, were set in an elegant outdoor tent, where guests enjoyed cocktails courtesy of Bacardi, dinner, and a powerful alumni performance directed by renowned dancer, choreographer, and YoungArts Artistic Advisor, Bill T. Jones, who also made an impromptu appearance on stage, bouncing between dancers to cheer them on.  Tony Award® winner Brian Stokes Mitchell emceed the evening that also included speeches from YoungArts Artistic Advisor, Frank Gehry and actress, Rosie Perez, who presented award-winning, world renowned, architect Zaha Hadid and Academy Award winning singer, dancer and actress Rita Moreno, with the YoungArts Arison Awards for their influence on the development of young artists. YoungArts alumnus Andrew Rannells, who currently appears on the HBO series, Girls, received the Alumni Award. 

The party continued late into the night on the gorgeous, candlelit campus plaza, filled end-to-end with all sorts of desserts, cocktails and music for the After Hours party- where the YoungArts students, award recipients and alumni mingled and danced with the guests-even forming a Conga line that spanned the entire terrace. 

The Backyard Ball was hosted by Gala chairpersons, Elizabeth and Facundo L. Bacardi, along with the organization’s President and CEO, Paul T. Lehr. Notable attendees included:   Frank Gehry, and YoungArts master teachers Rosie Perez, Paola Antonelli, Shelly Berg, Angela Brown, James Rosenquist, Naomi Fisher, Jacque d’Amboise, and Judith Hill (YoungArts Popular Voice Winner 2002).  Other special guests included:  Margarita and Armando Codina, Adrienne Arsht, Emilio Estefan, Sarah Arison, Mayda Cisneros, Darlene and Jorge Perez, Iran Issa-Khan, Sam Robin, Nancy and Jon Batchelor, Walid and Susie Wahab, Jackie Soffer, Princess Leirjal Fyrial, Criselda Breene, Cathy Leff, Marcella and Daniel Novela, Lisa and Adam Koffler, Martin Margulies, Marvin Ross Friedman and Adrienne bon Haes, Andres Fanjul Jr., Stephanie and Evan Reed, Sandy Muss, Arlys and Mark  Raymond, Tracey and Bruce Berkowitz, Tui Pranich and Diana Stoll.



Chippendales Takes Over Mansion chippendales

To say that “a good time was had by all” would be a huge understatement, judging from the laughter, screams and dancing from the audience when Chippendales, the #1 male review in the world, celebrated its opening weekend in Miami at Mansion Nightclub.  The guys showed off their many talents and (ahem) “assets” to a sold out crowd of socialites, VIPs and ladies who “don’t normally go to this sort of thing.” Ushering a new entertainment experience on South Beach, the legendary touring troupe is known for its fully choreographed performances and for the performers’ distinctive shirtless bow tie  collar and cuffs trade dress.  The bottom line is that the Chippendales are extremely talented and entertaining, even with their shirts ON! It’s no surprise that the show has been established as the gold standard in women’s entertainment. If you have yet to see these men in action, be sure to catch the Chippendales show during its limited engagement, through January 25.  Shows start at 9 pm, Thursdays-Saturdays.  For more information and tickets, visit: www.chippendales.com/miami.


batchA Batch of Fun 

Batch Gastropub, located in the heart of Brickell, opened a couple of weeks ago- bringing a hip vibe to the area.  In addition to serving tasty dishes in a great atmosphere, this new concept features specialty cocktails poured right from the tap, along with the usual craft beers and a full bar. The menu includes typical classics from gastropubs of the prohibition era- designed with quality, creativity and select ingredients at reasonable prices. There’s cool dance music and lots of flat screens on which to watch your favorite sports. Batch is located at: 30 SW 12th Street. For more information, contact: (305) 808-5555 or visit:  www.Batchmiami.com.

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