Tuesday, March 21, 2017

A Toast to New Orleans : Mad Hatters/ Tennessee Williams Literary Festival/NO Fashion Week / WYES “60 Years and Still Groovin’ Gala and more.....

 It is Festival Time at The Groovy Round Table Luncheon was a great success!

I hope you enjoyed St. Patrick's and St. Joseph's Day Festivities.  I sure did and I missed not going to my favorite plantation, Houmas House Plantation and Gardens, like I have  done in the past.
It is not every day, that the New Orleans Ballet Association hosts its ultra-elegant BRAVO fundraiser, which it did on Friday, March 17. The awesome affair titled "When the Stars Align" was held at the Grand Ballroom of the Roosevelt Hotel. Every one of the guests felt like they were indeed a STAR! We mingled with the Stars of the American Ballet who did an Encore performance the next evening at the Mahalia Jackson Theater. 
The Gala, chaired by my darling friend Sandra Herman, featured a patron party with champagne and Sazeracs and accompanying appetizers, a spectacular three-course menu and a Big Band sound with talented and entertaining Deacon John and his Ivories.
Gorgeous, talented Bryan Batt was the Master of Ceremonies and he conducted the Live Auction. "When the Stars Align” Ball will go down my memory lane as one of the most spectacular fundraiser of the year.  https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.10154170202575870.1073742811.581200869&type=1&l=cf2829728d
On Wednesday, March 15, I enjoyed 
so much hosting my monthly Round Table Luncheon, billed as "It is Festival Time." The Luncheon in the Bourbon Orleans Hotel was a great success. 

We grooved and celebrated, not only festivals and cultural/social fundraisers, we also celebrated St. Patrick's Day. For that occasion, I invited as our live entertainer, Irish guitarist/singer, Vali Talbot,  who delighted us with classic beloved Irish songs.

I tied the luncheon to the upcoming WYES “60 Years and Still Groovin’ Gala ” on March 23.  Dana Hansel and  

Aislinn Hinyup of WYES spoke about the fundraiser. 

I  invited BRAVO Gala Chair, Sandra Herman, to speak about the upcoming New Orleans Ballet's "When the Stars Align" Ball and the Men and Women of Fashion Luncheon. Rosemary James represented the Bishop Perry Series of Hispanic-themed Lenten concerts at St. Mary’s Church in the French Quarter. Bill Hess, President of the Board of LPO, represented the philharmonic orchestra and its upcoming Opus Ball.  Author Valerie Grubb represented the New Orleans Film Festival. Mamie Gasperecz, Board President of the Tennessee Williams New Orleans Literary Festival spoke about the TWF and Rebecca Sell, Marketing and Publicity Manager of French Quarter Festivals, spoke about that upcoming event.   It was really informative, entertaining and  delicious.  Put in your calendar that the next Round Table Luncheon will be on Wednesday, April 19 at noon at the Bourbon Orleans Hotel. https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.10154164976100870.1073742808.581200869&type=1&l=3288fdb8ae

On Wednesday, I covered the Patron Party for NOMA's annual Art in Bloom - Rhythm & Blooms presented by Iberia Bank. 

Darlings, NOMA's Art in Bloom 2017 was, as in the past, EXQUISITE! It is my favorite time to visit the New Orleans Museum of Art. With the theme " Rhythm & Blooms and chaired by Quincy Crawford and Sarah Fein, the fundraiser featured beautiful floral arrangements, delicious cuisine and entertainment by Joe Simon's Jazz Music and Trinity Episcopal School Honor Choir lead by talented Anais St. John
Darlings, now that I don't have to work at the gallery anymore, I enjoy attending lectures and lunches. It was a real pleasure to have the opportunity to attend the very informative and entertaining lectures as part of the NOMA's Art in Bloom weekend of author James Farmer - a lifestyle expert, garden, floral and interior designer and author of "A Time to Plant, Sip and Savor," “Porch Living,” “Wreaths for All Seasons," "Dinner on the Grounds," and "A Time to Celebrate." In addition, Farmer is editor-at-large for Southern Living. He was really funny.
Laura Downing was an inspiration! She is a floral designer, former White House Chief Florist, and author of  “Floral Diplomacy," I was invited by my darling friend Carol Hall to sit at her table for the annual luncheon, followed by a lovely Fashion Show by Saks Fifth Avenue. I truly enjoyed being with Carol and her friends. 
That evening, there was not one but two fun events that I did not want to miss. The first one was on March 16,  when the Bishop Perry Center continued its annual Lenten series of free public concerts at 6 p. m. at St. Mary's Catholic Church, 1100 Chartres Street with a performance by the internationally acclaimed concert pianist Peter Collins. The series highlights the contributions made by Spain and the Latin American nations to the world’s body of great music.

That evening, I was invited to cover the 2017 Annual Dinner meeting of the French American Chamber of Commerce at the New Orleans Jazz Museum at the Old U.S. Mint from 5 to 8 p.m. The keynote speaker was J. Stephen Perry, President & CEO of the New Orleans Convention & Visitors Bureau.  Awards were presented to outgoing Director of the New Orleans Port, Gary LaGrange and Damien Regnard 
Image may contain: 2 people, people standing and suit

Friday, was one of those nights that I need desperately a clone! After having a drink at Effervesce Champagne Club, I was meeting my friend Michael Langford to make an appearance on the red carpet of The New Orleans Film Society's PATRON PARTY & GALA at the Magnolia Mansion. Champagne, caviar with food from Acme Oyster House and Cajun caviar will be waiting there for the Patrons. Music by Helen Gillet.

The Patron Party and Gala was awesome. Mother Nature provided glorious weather to enjoy the setting at the exquisite Magnolia Mansion. I enjoyed the libations, the delicious food and seeing so many of my darling friends. Thank you, member of the board Valerie Grubb for including me. https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.10154172221060870.1073742814.581200869&type=1&l=499d53246f

I enjoyed so much going to Effervescence. I was delighted to see my darling friend Lisa Tull of Republic serving Taittinger Champagne. It turns out that the owner, Crystal, is the sister of my darling friend Kirk Coco - owner of NOLA Brewing Company. 
I also enjoyed very much being greeted on the piano with “As Time Goes By,” performed by talented Harry Mayronne who played for many years at Restaurant Jonathan, also on North Rampart. Brings me a lot of bubbly memories.
On Saturday, among the several events that I attended was the LPO's Opus Ball. It was very difficult to make it to the Sheraton Hotel while the St. Joseph Parade was going on but, as in the past, I wanted to cover the annual LPO's Opus Ball.

LPO Swings took place Saturday, March 18, beginning with a 6 p.m. patron party followed by a 6:30 p.m. seated dinner. Conducted by LPO Music Director Carlos Miguel Prieto, the concert program was supported by the Gia Maione Prima Foundation.

The evening included a three-course gourmet seated dinner and additional dancing with music provided by the ASCAP scholars and members from the NOCCA Jazz Big Band.
This year, Opus Ball proceeds benefit Band Together, an LPO education program with a thematic focus on local cultural and historic landmarks. Band Together combines LPO mentorship of students in high school band programs with a culminating live concert performance—where students perform alongside LPO members.

On Sunday, Mother Nature blessed us with an incredibly beautiful night to enjoy the St. Joseph's Day festivities at my darling friend Tony Marino's residence on Bourbon Street. As in the past, he sets a beautiful St. Joseph's Altar against the wall of his lovely home and then he also has another one inside. He always treats us to talented opera singers, a blessing of the altar and a Italian Feast that transport us to Italy. 

My evening kept going and this time, it was the Kick-off party for the New Orleans Fashion Week that my darling friend Tracee Dundas founded. It was the perfect night for the Official Party to Kickoff a Weeklong Fashion Fest - New Orleans Fashion Week 2017 at W French Quarter :NEW ORLEANS FASHION WEEK-MARCH 18-24, 2017

Darlings as part of the New Orleans Fashion week, I enjoyed so much attending yesterday  the Soiree in honor of talented fashion designer Pedram Pasha Taheri at Cafe Adelaide.

Margarita Bergen with John Goodman

Fashion Week in New Orleans with great friends. Fabulous Fashion Designer Pegram Pasha Tahari. Tonight's meet and greet was coordinated but the wonderful Tracee Dundas.
Those attending with me were Margarita Bergen, Morris Kahn, Michael LangfordArnold Baker and Ricky Stevens.#NOFW7

This morning, I am looking forward to attending the 
French Quarter Festival presented by Chevron 
Press Conference and Media Party-  Tuesday, March 21, 2017 at 10 a.m.: Omni Royal Orleans Hotel, 500 Royal Street
DETAILS: Join French Quarter Festivals, Inc., New Orleans tourism officials, and invited guests in celebrating the final countdown to the 34th Annual French Quarter Festival presented by Chevron. The press conference takes place at the site of the Omni Royal Orleans stage and will feature live music from Tony Green and Gypsy Jazz, as well as final announcements, merchandise unveiling, and exciting guest presenters. For more information contact Rebecca Sell at (504) 522-5730 or email rebecca@fqfi.org. Visit the French Quarter Festivals, Inc. website at fqfi.org for more information about the organization, and click here to request a media credential. 

Don't you just love living in a city that has four major events going on: the New Orleans Film Festival, the New Orleans Fashion Week, New Orleans Entrepreneur Week and the Tennessee William New Orleans Literary Festival? I do!.
In addition we also have the following fun events that I am looking forward to attend: 
Darlings, this week is New Orleans Entrepreneur Week

New Orleans Entrepreneur Week (NOEW), March 19-24, 2017, is a uniquely New Orleanian festival that celebrates and showcases the best of business…

March 22 
 Women’s Guild of New Orleans Opera Association 's Mad Hatter’s Luncheon

 Wear your most glamorous, whimsical or outrageous hat for “A Day at the Races,” luncheon and Saks Fifth Avenue Fashion Show. The afternoon will include a hat contest, lunch and a silent auction.
Tickets: Starting at $75 at New Orleans Hilton Riverside, Grand Ballroom
Contact: 267-9527

March 22-26
Tennessee Williams/New Orleans Literary Festival
Benefits: Tennessee Williams/New Orleans Literary Festival
Event Info: A five-day festival that features theater events, literary panels, master classes, a scholar’s conference, music events, food events, literary walking tours, a book fair and more. Events will take place at the Hotel Monteleone, the Historic New Orleans Collection and other venues in the French Quarter and around the city.
Tickets: $10-$45
Location: Hotel Monteleone, THNOC and other venues in the French Quarter
Get your act together at these theater workshops, panels, and events designed to inspire and instruct:...
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Contact: 581-1144

Relive Beatlemania as the LPO and Classical Mystery Tour tribute band perform all of your favorite Beatles hits exactly as they were written. March 23-24 at the Orpheum Theater New Orleans.

Student tickets $10 • Adult tickets starting at $20

March 23
WYES 60 Years and Still Groovin’ Gala

 To celebrate 60 years at the region’s editor and storyteller, WYES is throwing a festive 1960s-themed gala.
 Junior Gala $100; Gala or Junior Patron $250; Patron $500 at Home of Dana and Steve Hansel
Contact: 486-5511

March 24
 Daughters of Charity Foundation of New Orleans“Keeping Our Promises” Gala
 DCFNO’s sixth annual gala will honor individuals who share their vision and work to promote healthy communities with their “Inspired Cross Award.” The event will include a silent auction and a live fundraiser, as well as live music and entertainment.
Tickets: Gala $100; Patron Party $175 at  Messina’s at the Terminal.Contact: 231-0659

March 24
 Preservation Resource Center of New Orleans 40th annual Julia Jump
 This 40th annual event will feature live music and dancing, creative cocktails, an open bar and a silent auction to benefit the PRC’s mission of promoting the preservation, restoration and revitalization of New Orleans’ historic architecture and neighborhoods.
Tickets: Starting at $75 at the  The Cannery
Contact: 581-7032

I enjoyed so much going to Effervescence. I was delighted to see my darling friend Lisa Tull of Republic serving Taittinger Champagne. It turn out that the owner Crystal is the sister of my darling friend Kirk Coco - owner of NOLA Brewing company.
I also enjoyed very much being greeted on the piano with "AS time goes BY " performed by talented Harry Mayronne who played for many years at Jonathan Restaurant also on North Rampart.  It brought  a lot of bubbly memories!.
This Week at The Collection                                                 March 20 - 26, 2017
Final week to view Clarence John Laughlin and His Contemporaries: A Picture and a Thousand Words

Thursday - Saturday: The Tennessee Williams / New Orleans Literary Festival events at THNOC 

THNOC images now on display at the National Museum of African American History and Culture in Washington, DC
Clarence John Laughlin and His Contemporaries: A Picture and a Thousand Words closes this Saturday

 Final week to view Clarence John Laughlin and His Contemporaries: A Picture and a Thousand Words

Clarence John Laughlin and His Contemporaries: A Picture and a Thousand Words
on view through Saturday, March 25, 2017
gallery hours: Tuesday - Saturday, 9:30 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.
Williams Research Center, 410 Chartres Street
Admission is free.
Time is running out to see THNOC's acclaimed exhibition on Clarence John Laughlin (1905 - 1985). The Louisiana native ranks among the most significant artists in New Orleans history. Though his international reputation as a pioneer in experimental and surrealist photography took root during his lifetime, he was forever convinced of his isolation from the mainstream artistic community. His exhaustive written records and remarkable collection of images, however, prove otherwise.
Laughlin produced more than 17,000 images in his lifetime and collected a trove of letters and hundreds of photographs through correspondence with his peers. Though he remained engaged with the artistic community, the romantic tinge of his images diverged from, and sometimes clashed with, the mid-century modernist movement. With more than 250 letters and images--including some never before exhibited--Clarence John Laughlin and His Contemporaries: A Picture and a Thousand Words encourages visitors to discover the enigmatic photographer and make their own assessments of his work.
In January Gambit Weekly described the display as "a sprawling yet very personal exhibition that provides unusual depth and insight amid images ranging from his most experimental to his most famous."
The exhibition occupies two gallery spaces at THNOC's Williams Research Center, 410 Chartres Street. Laughlin's exchanges with fellow photographers are on display in the corridor adjacent to the Boyd Cruise Room, while his correspondence with publishers, editors, and art curators can be seen in the Laura Simon Nelson Galleries for Louisiana Art. Admission is free, and the show will remain on view through Saturday, March 25, 2017.
The 16th edition of the Tennessee Williams Annual Review will be released at this year's Tennessee Williams / New Orleans Literary Festival.

 Thursday - Saturday: The Tennessee Williams / New Orleans Literary Festival events at THNOC

Thursday - Friday, March 23 - 24:
Master Classes
533 Royal Street
Friday, March 24: Scholars Conference
Williams Research Center, 410 Chartres Street
Saturday, March 25: Panel Discussions
Williams Research Center, 410 Chartres Street
Tickets are required for all events. To purchase tickets by phone, call (504) 581-1144.
The Tennessee Williams / New Orleans Literary Festival returns to New Orleans for the 31st year March 22 - 26. The Historic New Orleans Collection is pleased to host several festival events, including master classes and panel discussions. A complete schedule of events is available online.

In addition, the opening night event at Le Petit Théâtre du Vieux Carré on Wednesday, March 22--"Where Sex and Sin Were the Specialties: An Evening of Storyville Memories"--will include presentations by Pamela D. Arceneaux, author of Guidebooks to Sin: The Blue Books of Storyville, New Orleans, and THNOC Library Cataloger Nina Bozak. 
THNOC also hosts the Tennessee Williams Scholars Conference, where literary and theater experts share their insights into the creative work of the great American playwright. The conference is directed by Robert Bray, professor emeritus of English at Middle Tennessee State University and founder of the Tennessee Williams Annual Review, published by The Historic New Orleans Collection. The 2017 edition, edited by R. Barton Palmer, will be released in conjunction with the festival.

The Washington Square Park Foundation for the Arts is proud to announce the first annual Washington Square Park Music Festival featuring A Tribute to Ray Charles featuring Davell Crawford on Tuesday, March 21st followed on Tuesday, April 4th with A Tribute to Al Jarreau.  

The family-friendly concerts are free and open to the public and will begin at 3pm - 7pm at Washington Square Park, 700 Elysian Fields Avenue between Frenchmen St. and Royal St. in the heart of the Faubourg Marigny.  The bi-weekly festival will also showcase performances by an array of local musicians, food by rising culinary stars, refreshing beverages and local crafts. 


The Art and Craft of Theater

Get your act together at these theater workshops, panels, and events designed to inspire and instruct:

33rd Annual Mad Hatter’s Luncheon and Saks Fifth Avenue Fashion Show
Wednesday, March 22, 2017
Grand Ballroom – New Orleans Hilton Riverside

The concerts will take place every
 Wednesday, March 22 through May 24, and Tuesday, May 2, from
 5 to 8 p.m. 
at Lafayette Square in downtown New Orleans
 (between Camp Street and St. Charles Avenue, directly across from Gallier Hall).

Checkout the full 2017 line-up below!
March 22             Amanda Shaw & The Cute Guys, opened by Daria and The Hip Drops
March 29             Marc Broussard, opened by Kristin Diable & The City
April 5   George Porter, Jr. & Runnin' Pardners, opened by RumpleSTEELSkin
April 12 Jon Cleary and co-headliner John Papa Gros Band
April 19 Big Sam's Funky Nation, opened by Naughty Professor
April 26 Flow Tribe, opened by Robin Barnes
May 2    Christian Scott aTunde Adjuag, opened by The Tipitina's Interns
May 3    Kermit Ruffins & The Barbeque Swingers and co-headliner Marcia Ball Band
May 10 PJ Morton, opened by Andrew Duhon Trio
May 17 Headliner to be announced, opened by Mia Borders
May 24 Sweet Crude and co-headliner Tank and the Bangas *May 31 and April 7 reserved as rain dates.

Top Taco is a culinary extravaganza where patrons can sample unlimited gourmet tacos and signature cocktails from some of the finest restaurants in New Orleans. The event will be held Thursday, March 23, from 5:30 - 9:30 PM at the Riverwalk's Spanish Plaza.
Proceeds from the event benefit One Heart NOLA- Serving Children in Need.
free public concerts at 6 p. m. St. Mary's Catholic Church, 1100 Chartres St.
 16 and running through April 6, all featuring Hispanic and Hispanic inspired music of the Americas.

The Bishop Perry Center will kick-off its annual musical
series, "A Musical Prelude to the Celebration of Easter," 

concerts are:  March 23, Brazilian jazz musicians, the Eduardo Tozzato quartet from Rio de Janiero;
 March 30, classical guitarist Jay Kacherski; 

and April 6, Peter Weber and his Krewe de Voix Chamber chorale group perforing Baroque Spanish music.

(Old Ursuline Convent)
1116 Chartres St., New Orleans, LA.


New Orleans, LA - February 23, 2017 - WYES-TV/Channel 12, your local PBS member station, is turning 60 this year. To kick-off a year of celebrating, WYES invites guests to attend a special Gala - WYES 60 YEARS AND STILL GROOVIN' on Thursday, March 23 at the home of Dana and Steve Hansel at 1 Garden Lane in New Orleans. 
Attendees will enjoy fab cuisine by Celebrate! Catered Events by Windsor Court and out of sight libations courtesy of the Goldring Family Foundation and Sazerac Company. Guests are encouraged to wear their 1960s best as they Twist, Mash Potato, Hully Gully and Wahtusi all night long to the groovy tunes of Escalade.
The Patron party begins at 6:30 p.m., tickets are $500 per person. The Gala begins at 8:00 p.m., tickets are $250 per person. Junior prices are available for ages ages 21-35. All event tickets include complimentary valet parking provided by GOPARK and can be purchased online at wyes.org or by calling 504-486-5511 during normal business hours. 
WYES is pleased to have Kaylea and Hunter Hill, Mary and Bill Hines, and C.C. and Bill Langenstein serving as event co-chairs. Many thank to our generous committee and event patrons. 
Special thanks to our generous sponsors Celebrate! Catered Events by Windsor Court, Sazerac Company, Goldring Family Foundation, IBERIABANK, Michele Reynoir and Kevin Clifford, Richard Adkerson/Ryan Adkerson, Patricia and Vernon Brinson/Royal Honda, Basi and Michael Carbine, Tia and Jimmy Roddy, Cox Communications, Globalstar, Chaffe McCall, and PELPRINT.com.
For a complete list of event committee, patrons and sponsors, visit wyes.org


City Park N. O. Logo

Thursdays at Twilight Concert Series
Celebrating New Orleans Music  
  • Thursdays at Twilight 
  •  Leroy Jones
  • Botanical GardenMusic
  • Thursdays at Twilight
    Botanical Garden
    March 23rd at 6:00 pm
    Leroy Jones has been a central figure in New Orleans' Jazz Scene since the mid-seventies and continuously expands and refines his musicianship in ways that manifest his multifaceted talent.  "I remember Leroy years ago in New Orleans. He was always regarded as the greatest. No one could touch him. For young musicians like me, he was exciting, intimidating. For the older ones, he was the keeper of the flame but Leroy did more than keep the flame. He started a forest fire". Harry Connick, Jr. Thursdays at Twilight series showcases some of the finest musicians in New Orleans featuring an assortment of music styles. Click the 'buy tickets' icon to the left of this paragraph to buy your $10/person tickets now! Please make sure to click the 'more information' below for further information about the concerts or to contact someone to answer your questions. Please remember to print your ticket(s) out ahead of time and bring with you to the event.
-There is a free parking lot across the street from the Botanical Garden. 
Admission: $10/person 

Jefferson Performing Arts Society
Tarzan the Musical
March 24 - 26, 2017
JPAC       6400 Airline Drive     Metairie, LA

You will not want to wait too long as tickets are going quickly! Tickets are on sale now online at jpas.org, by calling 504-885-2000, or reserving them at the theatre box office one hour prior to performance time.
Performance dates are:
March 24 - 26, 2017
Fridays and Saturdays at 7:30 PM
Sundays at 2:00 PM
Jefferson Performing Arts Center
6400 Airline Drive * Metairie, LA

March 24 - 26
Kicking off the New Orleans festival season 2017, the New Orleans Bourbon Festival's mission is to provide attendees with an opportunity to enjoy exceptional Bourbon and cuisine surrounded by the charm and culture of New Orleans. The venue for the main event is The Sugar Mill, located in the historic Warehouse District of Downtown NOLA. It will feature an outdoor marketplace of Bourbon-centric products, two grand tastings of Bourbon from the world's finest distilleries, traditional New Orleans cuisine, and live classical jazz music.
A portion of the proceeds benefit St. Michael Special School.

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“HOGWAII” Gala kicks off 9th Annual Hogs for the Cause
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On April 1, 2017, Jewish Children’s Regional Service (JCRS) will be presenting its Jewish Roots: Past, Present & Future Gala at the Hyatt Regency New Orleans. This will be the 6th JCRS Jewish Roots event and since beginning this series, the annual gala has become the largest upscale Jewish gathering in New Orleans with nearly 500 people from across the community and across the Mid-South in attendance. Tickets are availab...
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