Laura Osnes, Britney Coleman, Jason Gotay and More to Take Part in Symphony Space 2021 Gala

The event will also feature Kate Baldwin, Nikki Renée Daniels, Jeff Kready, Rashidra Scott, Nathaniel Stampley, Sally Wilfert, and Tony Yazbeck.

By: Apr. 29, 2021
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Laura Osnes, Britney Coleman, Jason Gotay and More to Take Part in Symphony Space 2021 Gala

Symphony Space has announced its 2021 Gala, the organization's first event featuring live performance in its Peter Jay Sharp Theater since March 2020. Across the evening, as audience members watch and engage virtually, artists who have made Symphony Space their home will celebrate their return to the Sharp Theater stage with a concert of soaring songs and captivating dance.

The event, produced and directed by Annette Jolles and Joel Fram, features musical numbers from acclaimed Broadway performers Kate Baldwin, Britney Coleman, Nikki Renée Daniels, Jason Gotay, Jeff Kready, Laura Osnes, Rashidra Scott, Nathaniel Stampley, Sally Wilfert, and Tony Yazbeck, and the world premiere of a new dance work choreographed by Sara Brians, performed by dancers Saki Masuda, Michelle Mercedes, and Devin L. Roberts. The gala is music-directed by Fred Lassen (conductor and piano), who is joined by John Romeri (flute), Keve Wilson (oboe), Nuno Antunes (clarinet), Eric Reed (horn), Nanci Belmont (bassoon), Laura Bontrager (cello), George Farmer (bass), and Clayton Craddock (drums).

After the performances, ticket buyers at and above the $1,000 level will join a breakout room session for 30 minutes of cocktails and conversation with a guest artist; these virtual table hosts include Roz Chast and Patricia Marx, Jane Curtin, Santino Fontana, Melora Hardin and Gildart Jackson, Peter Francis James, Jane Kaczmarek, Sonia Manzano, Colum McCann, George Saunders, and Meg Wolitzer.

When Symphony Space's theaters were left empty as the pandemic shuttered cultural institutions last spring, the organization harnessed the knowledge it had gained from decades of connecting to remote audiences via its nationally beloved Selected Shorts public radio program and podcast. In 2020, Symphony Space's virtual programming reached audiences in 48 states and 55 countries. Realizing that as in-person audiences return and the building again begins to buzz with creative energy, the lessons in access the pandemic imparted on the industry can and should continue to be implemented and expanded, Symphony Space installed state-of-the-art video streaming equipment in its theaters. The 2021 Gala marks the first use of these technologies, signaling the hybrid potential ahead for Symphony Space, and the ability for its signature one-time-only events to reach audiences within its New York spaces-and anywhere else in the world. Funds from the gala will help the organization step boldly into the moment that awaits.

Symphony Space Executive Director Kathy Landau says, "When I got a text that the first rehearsal for the dance piece in the space had happened and gone well, it was thrilling-we had arrived at that long-awaited moment when artists were once again gracing our stages. Before the pandemic, every corner of our building pulsated with art and ideas, with people meeting in the hallways and the wings. The theater itself is almost its own character in the life of Symphony Space-and what makes it come alive is the community we have built in and around it. And while we had so much engaging virtual programming, the theater had been sitting almost entirely empty. For the gala, there was a lightbulb moment where we realized, 'wait, there's a way to safely and responsibly and comfortably bring this energy back;' for this event to be our first step before bringing audiences in. It had to be quintessential Symphony Space: to be multidisciplinary, to have that unique-to-this-one-evening, in-the-moment immediacy, to have that magical alchemy that occurs when artists come together at Symphony Space to create, collaborate, and celebrate."

Concert-only tickets are available for $35; single tickets range from $1,000 to $4,000; and rooms range from $10,000 to $40,000.

Tickets and rooms may be purchased here or by calling (212) 864-1414 x229. All proceeds will benefit the performing arts and education programs at Symphony Space, which is a non-profit organization.

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