Russian American Foundation Presents PHILIPPE QUINT & FRIENDS Benefit Concert Tonight

Russian American Foundation Presents PHILIPPE QUINT & FRIENDS Benefit Concert Tonight

Tonight, May 27 at 7:00pm, the Russian American Foundation (RAF) will present "Philippe Quint & Friends," a benefit concert hosted by the renowned Russian-American violinist at the New York Times Building's Times Center (242 West 41st Street). The evening will feature performances by special guests such as Joshua Bell, John Corigliano, Josh Ralph, Emily Bergl, Michael Bacon, William Wolfram, the Matt Herskowitz Trio, and Quint's own Argentine tango group, the Quint Quintet, featuring featuring JP Jofre, Octavio Brunetti, Oren Fader, and Pedro Giraudo. This concert will mark the opening of the 12th Annual Russian Heritage Month® and all proceeds from the evening will benefit the Russian American Foundation's Jewish Heritage Education Program (a 501(c)3 organization).

Philippe Quint is a multifaceted artist whose wide range of interests has led to several Grammy nominations for his albums, performances with major orchestras throughout the world at venues ranging from the Gewandhaus in Leipzig to Carnegie Hall in New York, a leading role in a major independent film called Downtown Express, and explorations of tango with his band The Quint Quintet. His latest album, Opera Breve, is a unique collection of opera transcriptions for violin and piano. Quint's recording of the Tchaikovsky Violin Concerto with the Sofia Philharmonic led by conductor Martin Panteleev, paired with Anton Arensky's String Quartet No. 2, Op. 35 (for violin, viola, and two cellos) written in memory of Tchaikovsky, will be released in spring 2014.

RAF, in partnership with the Brownstone Jewish Education Center, creates educational programs for young, Jewish individuals from Russia and Israel inspiring them to become future leaders in their communities while delving into the depth of Judaism through lectures, peer-to-peer learning and collaborations on joint projects. Last year RAF with the Brownstone successfully brought two groups of over 50 participants from St. Petersburg, Russia to New York for a 7-day program. This year, five groups of close to 130 participants from all over Russia and the former Soviet States will be coming to NYC with the support of RAF. Each participant gets a full scholarship for all expenses, including travel to NYC, travel during their stay, accommodations, and all additional costs of the program.

In collaboration with other major institutions, RAF organizes and sponsors Jewish-themed exhibits to educate Russian and American non-practicing Jews on Jewish heritage. Past projects include "The Memory of Time and Space: Russian Jewish Artists in Diaspora" featuring Jewish artists of Russian-speaking communities presented at the Harriman Institute of Columbia University, "The Time of a Great Dream: American Artists Gift to the Jewish Autonomous Region of the USSR" exhibited at the National Arts Club and "The Jews of Tsarist Russia", a photographic exhibition shown at YIVO (Institute for Jewish Research) and many others.

2014 marks the 35th anniversary of the Russian Jewish immigration. In celebration of this important mark, RAF together with COJECO will produce and co-sponsor exhibits and performances to highlight the community's talents at major New York City venues.

Founded in 1997, the Russian American Foundation (RAF) encourages interest in and understanding of Russian heritage among all communities in the US, as well as promotes reciprocal interest in and understanding of American heritage among global Russian-speaking communities. Over the years, RAF has advocated arts education programs, specifically music, visual art and ballet, in various communities including children with disabilities. RAF has also promoted educational programs for the Chernobyl disaster through art exhibits, documentary films and conversational panels.

June of every year, RAF produces the Russian Heritage Month®, an exciting and important celebration of the New York community of émigrés from the former Soviet Union. The Russian Heritage Month® is the only event of its kind in the U.S. and it annually attracts over 100,000 people to enjoy contemporary and folk music, dance performances, art exhibitions, public festivals, health and sports fairs, business expos, and other thrilling events.

RAF's partnership with Moscow's Bolshoi Ballet Academy dates to 2007, when both organizations joined in a mission to bring the methods, culture, and pedagogy of authentic Russian classical ballet to the American ballet community. RAF awards over 60 dance scholarships annually to talented young dancers in economic need. These scholarships provide an opportunity for deserving up-and-coming dance students to study with professors from the esteemed and unrivaled Bolshoi Ballet Academy. In addition, RAF fully sponsors two dancers to train at the Bolshoi Ballet Academy for two weeks and perform at the Academy's Spring Gala Concert at the Bolshoi Theater in Moscow, Russia. Graduates from the Bolshoi Academy go on to perform with the Bolshoi Ballet, the American Ballet Theater, the Mariinsky Theatre and many other premier ballet companies of the world.