Local arts and community organizations celebrated milestone anniversaries.
Flutes, woodwinds, horns, strings, drums, and more sounded with gusto for the Toledo Symphony’s 75th season opener of the ProMedica Masterworks Series in the Peristyle at the Toledo Museum of Art. And there’s still chatter about the Beethoven’s 5th Symphony with Alain Trudel, the symphony’s new music director who is from Montreal. He received a special pin from Quebec’s government in honor of their native son.
From left: Cyril Gauchet, Alain Trudel, and Zak Vassar at the Toledo Symphony party at the Libbey House.
A proclamation from the city of Toledo was presented by Chief of Staff Katy Crosby. Mayor Wade Kapszukiewicz could not be there but he was at the dress rehearsal because he loves Beethoven.
The evening started with a moving rendition of the national anthem.
The second half featured the Toledo Ballet, which has joined forces with the symphony under the newly formed Toledo Alliance for the Performing Arts, which will become official Jan. 1. Zak Vassar, symphony president and CEO, said the orchestra and the ballet first performed together in The Nutcracker 70 years ago. Marie Vogt, founder of the Toledo Ballet, was in the audience.
Ballerinas in white tutus, with poise and strength, graced the stage with dance as the symphony played excerpts from Tchaikovsky’s ballet Swan Lake.
Bravos and standing ovations were continuous all evening.
Key donors and patrons, orchestra members, staff, and Quebecois dignitaries mingled during an afterglow at the historic Edward D. Libbey House sponsored by the Quebec Provincial government. Seen were John and Yolanda Szuch, Bill Mathis, Kimberly Howard, Tom and Karen Kline, and Melissa and Robert Freeman.
THE TOLEDO Opera is celebrating its 60th season. The Magic Flute by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart, presented by ProMedica and Block Communications Inc., is Friday and Sunday at the Valentine Theatre. For tickets, go to toledoopera.org or call 419-255-7464.
ST. Paul’s Community Center's eighth annual fund-raising event, Celebrating 40 Years of Service, raised $28,000. Nearly 190 guests sipped and nibbled as Someone’s Daughter band played tunes at Parkway Place in Maumee. Toledo councilman Tom Waniewski, serving as emcee, welcomed everyone. The Rev. Timothy Pettaway of Walk the Word Ministry gave the invocation followed by a tasty dinner.
Dana Corp. was honored with the Ruth Arden Community Partner Award; Walk the Word Ministry with the Alice Dickerson Community Faith Based Award; and Robert Town with the Hero of the Homeless Award. Employees Alan Ronda, Sarajane Porter, and Yvonne Edwards were recognized for more than 20 years of service.
It was announced that John Irwin, finance director, is retiring, and Lisa Flynn will step into the role.
Michael Carrington brought tears of joy to everyone as he shared his story of rising from homelessness. As long as there is mental illness, as long as people get laid of work, as long as life can be harsh and unpredictable, the center’s work is not done, said Joe Habib, executive director.
The center, originally operated out of a basement room, has a 28-unit facility for individuals to be placed in a one-bedroom apartment. A case manager is on premises to teach living skills and manage the Social Security checks of individuals with mental health or developmental disabilities so they can pay their bills and maintain a place of their own.
BEING Grateful, a tribute band for the Grateful Dead, took to the outdoor stage at the Pub at Paula Brown Shop. The just-for-fun event included a cash bar, food trucks, and local vendors.
Barbara Hendel is The Blade's society editor. Contact her at email@example.com or call 419-724-6124.
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