Steppenwolf Auxiliary Council's 2014 Red or White Ball Raises Nearly $60,000

Four hundred of Chicago's young arts supporters turned out for a high-energy evening of music, dancing, cocktails, impressive local cuisine and a silent auction at Steppenwolf Auxiliary Council's 2014 Red or White Ball on Friday, March 28, 2014 at Chicago's sleek, contemporary Venue One (1044 W Randolph St). The signature event for the city's most active young professionals raised nearly $60,000, benefiting Steppenwolf for Young Adults, the theater's nationally recognized arts education program, which annually impacts more than 12,000 students, teachers and families.

The evening kicked off with an exclusive VIP cocktail reception at 7:30pm, with VIP gift bags, special access to Steppenwolf artists, and delectable tasting stations from CH Distillery, City Winery, Freestyle, Geja's Café, Goose Island, RA sushi and Summer House Santa Monica.

The party continued in the main room where guests enjoyed scrumptious tasting stations from Taco Joint and Café Ba-Ba-Reeba!, delicious samplings from Venue One catering, multiple open bars including a superb wine selection from City Winery and beer from Goose Island. Guests danced the evening away to hits spun by MDM Entertainment, enjoyed an Instagram scavenger hunt with live photo feed, and hit the photo booth from Fotio to capture the night's best moments and a fantastic after party hosted by Nellcôte.

The silent auction featured 30 amazing and diverse packages with something for everyone including a custom suit from the Tom James Company, a getaway to the Grand Geneva resort and a Wrigleyville experience with Cubs tickets. Raffle prizes for the 2014 Ball included a Kindle Fire, a romantic "stay-cation" at Hotel Lincoln with dinner for two at Geja's Café and an exclusive Steppenwolf Opening Night package with pre-show dinner, opening performance and after-party with artists from the show. The event's first ever Live Auction was a hit with packages such as a New York weekend getaway, a Steppenwolf experience for 8 with artists from The Way West and a private rooftop party for 12 from Chicago Specialty Gardens.

The 2014 Red or White Ball Honorary Chair was ensemble member Tarell Alvin McCraney, playwright of Head of Passes, which premiered at Steppenwolf last season, and The Brother/Sister Plays, produced at Steppenwolf in 2010. McCraney was also a recipient of a 2013 MacArthur Fellowship and was included in Crain's Chicago Business's 2013 "40 under 40." The 2014 Red or White Ball Chair was Jennifer Stuart. Co-Chairs included Aimee Graham, Ryan Stafford and Tanya Stanfield. The Auxiliary Council President is Kim Davis.

Other notable guests in attendance included: Steppenwolf ensemble member Alana Arenas and numerous Steppenwolf artists from the 2013/14 season, including Delia Baseman, Judy Blue, Carolyn Braver, Cassie Calderon, Phil de Guzman, Rudy Galvan, Laura Glenn, Aaron Himelstein, Jerry Mackinnon, Clancy McCartney, Caroline Neff, Melanie Neilan, Cole O'Beirne, Zoe Perry, Brennan Stacker, Steve Walker, Brendan Meyer, Ty Olwin, J.J. Phillips, Loretta Rezos, and Gabriel Ruiz.

The annual Red or White Ball serves as the primary fundraiser for the Steppenwolf Auxiliary Council, a community of more than 100 dynamic young professionals who strengthen the theater's ability to advance artistic experimentation and collaboration by developing new financial resources and new audiences for the creation and presentation of innovative theater. Since its inception in 2000, the Auxiliary Council has raised more than $1.5 million in contributions, enabling Steppenwolf to continue its mission of advancing the vitality and diversity of American theater.

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