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Fall/Winter 2017-18

B L U M E N T H A L P E R F O R M I N G A R T S – I G N I T I N G C U LT U R E






Ignite a SPARK:


Fall/Winter 2017-18


Officials discuss the construction of the N.C. Blumenthal Performing Arts Center 25 years ago.

Mural artist John Hairston is a testament to how Blumenthal changes peoples lives.







PNC Bank Presented Blumenthal's BBLA Award

Blumenthal's Beginnings 25 Years Ago

Blumenthal's Impact Behind the Scenes Goes Deep

Blumenthal Sponsors New Podcast

12 BLUMENTHAL IN PICTURES Snapshots of the Organization's Reach

ON THE COVER: Belk Theater when it was under construction.

BOARD OF TRUSTEES Reginald Bean, marketing & community relations chair Riaz H. Bhamani Amy Rice Blumenthal Kristin Hills Bradberry, chair Marivi Bryant, trustee apprentice Bobby Chesney Dena Diorio Bobby Drakeford J. Porter Durham, Jr., governance chair Erin Lavely Fisher David M. Goodman

Molly Griffin, education chair Timothy L. Gunter Jeff Hay, secretary and chair-elect Renee Hobart Sarah Hutchins, trustee apprentice Barbara Meeks, development chair Gail Sharps Myers Edwin B. Peacock, III George A. Raftelis Matthew Salisbury Kevin White, treasurer and finance & audit chair Amy Wooden


SPARK SPARK is produced by the Blumenthal Performing Arts Marketing staff. Vice President of Marketing Wendy Oglesby Editor, Graphic Designer and Content Coordinator Mark Wallace, creative services manager Content Coordinator Rebecca Bereiter, communication & creative content producer Contributing writers: Liz Rothaus Bertrand Adam Rhew Karen R. Martin


Editing support: John Luebke


A PASSION FOR ARTS OUTREACH Renee Hobart Wants to Connect All Children With Arts Opportunities

Renee Hobart, right, with her family.


The more they learned about the organization, the more they wanted to get involved. Since then, Renee Hobart’s participation has grown incrementally. After volunteering in the Development office, she was eventually tapped to become a trustee. Now in her second year serving in this leadership role, she also sits on Blumenthal’s 25th anniversary and education committees. “It’s kind of manifested into something very unexpected, to be honest with you,” she says. But her involvement hasn’t stopped there. Seeing the power of programs like Blumenthal’s Arts for All initiative, which provides underserved children with access to arts experiences, has energized Hobart to get involved with other vital cultural programs around Charlotte. “I can kind of see myself as my 25-year-old self in the eyes of these 8- and 9-year-old kids,” she says. Hobart has become a major supporter and fundraiser for The Arts Empowerment Project, an organization that connects court-involved teens and at-risk youths with arts and enrichment programs. Money raised helps cover tuition and travel expenses for these children – who have often been neglected and abused – providing them access to transformative arts experiences. “I’m discovering every day how important it is to give every kid from every background the access and the opportunity that I did not have as a child,” says Hobart.

By Liz Rothaus Bertrand

oard of trustees member Renee Hobart grew up the oldest of five children on a tobacco farm in eastern North Carolina. As a child, her family did not have much money for extras, and there were few arts and cultural activities in her small town. “My mom used to make my clothes,” she says. “We did not have access or the ability to do really anything.” Hobart was 25 years old and working as an analytical chemist for Merck when her boyfriend – and future husband, Chris Hobart – took her to see a Broadway touring production of Rent in Raleigh. She was mesmerized, never having had the chance to experience a live theatrical event as a child. Now years later, the Hobarts are passionate advocates for, and donors to, arts education programs around Charlotte, enabling children to have the opportunities she lacked growing up. The couple moved to Charlotte in 2002, and soon after, Chris Hobart founded Hobart Financial Group. About six years ago, the Hobarts decided to make a substantial commitment to supporting Blumenthal Performing Arts by becoming subscribers as well as Producer’s Circle Members. Renee Hobart credits Blumenthal’s staff – especially President Tom Gabbard and Vice President of Development Cindy Rice – for welcoming them warmly and explaining the behindthe-scenes world of theater to them. “We weren’t outsiders, even though we didn’t know anything (about the arts),” says Hobart.


She was thrilled this fall when her passions overlapped and she could help present The Arts Empowerment Project’s 2017 Corporate Leadership Award to Blumenthal Performing Arts at the organization’s annual New Day Luncheon. The mother of two young girls, ages 5 and 11, Hobart is also active in supporting the arts at her older daughter’s school, Charlotte Latin. She serves as the Lower School At-Large representative to Latin Arts Association, a volunteer organization supporting a wide range of programs including creative writing, music, and performing and visual arts. Through her knowledge of Blumenthal’s programs, Hobart has helped bring special opportunities to students, including jazz clinics at the school, with musicians from renowned groups like Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra and Sammy Miller and the Congregation. She also helped arrange a backstage tour for students interested in technical theater at a recent production of Finding Neverland at Belk Theater. The new Latin Arts Association president has discovered Hobart’s love for community outreach and has asked for her help connecting Charlotte Latin to the larger arts community. In 2017-18, the organization is seeking ways to support others in the Charlotte area who may not have the same access and funding available for arts programs. “The children at Charlotte Latin are taken care of,” says Hobart. “I think it’s important to bridge the gap so they can see how blessed they are.” T FALL/WINTER 2017-18 | SPARK



This page: Performers entertain at the groundbreaking ceremony for the N.C. Blumenthal Performing Arts Center. Adjacent page: top is the model that was made for the Center; bottom is the design used during the groundbreaking.




To Commemorate Blumenthal Performing Arts Center's 25th Anniversary, each issue of Spark magazine this season will talk about how Blumenthal transformed a city ... and transforms people's lives.


Blumenthal’s Beginnings 25 Years Ago

n a stage with pleated red skirting, a saxophonist in a dinner jacket oozed jazz tunes. The dancer in black tie click-clacked across the platform. A mime dressed as a construction worker pretended to eat a fake fish sandwich. There were balloons, purple and

orange and red, as if this celebration needed a formal marker of joviality. The crowd that gathered around the concrete and brick at North Tryon and 5th streets in uptown Charlotte spilled out into the roadway, past the chain link fence, beyond the red carpet that the VIPs used to get to the site of Charlotte’s performing

arts center. (The Charlotte Observer would note that the onlookers “ranged from the gray-suited to sweat-suited.”) That day, a Tuesday in May of 1989, was a pivotal moment in the city’s history. Dignitaries and average joes were there because they knew it was the start of something big. Continued on Page 6




Continued from Page 5

“It’s sort of teary to stand here and know it’s finally going to happen,” said Deborah Harris, the Arts & Science Council chairwoman, from the stage. She thanked everyone who helped make it happen – and there were plenty of people to thank. The groundbreaking for what would become the North Carolina Blumenthal Performing Arts Center marked the culmination of years of planning, dreaming and fundraising. César Pelli, a bespectacled Argentine with silver hair, stood to the side of the stage. The renowned architect had previously designed soaring structures in places such as Tokyo, Vancouver and London. He came up with the design for the performing arts center and the adjacent office tower with the crown. “The performance is the centerpiece but the building is like an instrument,” he said. “The best Stradivarius doesn’t come alive until the best player plays it.

Deborah Harris speaks at the groundbreaking ceremony for the North Carolina Blumenthal Performing Arts Center in May 1989.

“We’re counting on the Charlotte artists to make this building come alive.”


Charlotte’s central business district – called downtown decades ago and uptown today – was universally understood to be sleepy once all the businesspeople went home. “(It) was sorta like the Sahara Desert,” recalls Rolfe Neill, the longtime Observer publisher. “After 5 o’clock, it was a Potemkin village. There was nobody on the street. There was nothing downtown except the banks.” Even the bankers knew that to be true. “I’ve been living here 59 years, and when I came here I thought it was the most boring place I’d ever been in my whole life,” says retired banking executive Hugh McColl, whose imprint on matters of urban life in this city is greater than perhaps any other individual’s. What McColl and other early boosters


Idea for performing arts center mentioned in a consultant's report.


Belk Stores, NCNB and Charter Properties donate potential arts center site.



Mayor Harvey Gantt asks Hugh McColl to explore ways to build an arts center uptown.


State approved an additional $2 million, for a total of $11.5 million in state funding.



State approves $9.5 million for center. Two proposals submitted: Trade and Tryon, and Tryon at 7th.



Opening night for Belk Theater.


Judith Allen named as first Executive Director of Blumenthal.

understood was the vibrancy a performing arts center would create in the center of Charlotte. The first mention of a center city performing arts center came in a 1975 report by a consultant hired to create a CharlotteMecklenburg Cultural Action Plan. But the consultant dismissed such an ambitious idea and recommended improving the acoustics at Ovens Auditorium instead. McColl bristled at that suggestion. “(Ovens) did nothing for the city in terms of making restaurants prosper or leading to people meeting people from some other part of town as they should,” he says. There were more reports and studies – in 1979, 1983 and 1985 – and more discussion about the potential for an uptown arts venue. A full decade after that first report, then-Mayor Harvey Gantt tapped McColl to lead the Charlotte Uptown Development Corporation with a challenge: Figure out how to make a downtown performance venue a reality. McColl, a longtime arts patron, had motivations of his own. “I was really building (the PAC) so I could hear the damn symphony and not have to drive out there to Independence Boulevard to do that.” McColl partnered with Harris, who had made an uptown performing arts center a priority after seeing the transformative effect

Blumenthal takes over management of Spirit Square.

1997 1996

First run of The Phantom of the Opera.

From left, Hugh McColl, Leon Levine and Bill Lee chat during a fundraising campaign.

those venues had in other cities. “We had it on the table, but it kept moving back off the table or down on a list,” she says today. Even though arts patrons and civic leaders understood its potential, the facility was a tough sell. “We were sort of the underdog,” Harris Continued on Page 8

First run of Disney's The Lion King.

Launch of Blumenthal's High School Musical Theater Awards (The Blumey Awards).

2003 2003

Tom Gabbard named president/CEO of Blumenthal.

2013 2009

Knight Theater opens.



First run of Hamilton.



Continued from Page 7

recalls. “People didn’t understand why we needed it.” Although Harris recognized a performing arts center’s entertainment and economic value, she focused often on its educational significance. “When children are raised with the arts,” she says, “the creativity, the imagination, everything goes up. Their grades go up, their ability to write. Their ability to understand things. I really wanted that for Charlotte.”


In 1986, NCNB, the bank McColl ran, and Charter Properties bought land at the corner of Trade and Tryon streets to build a skyscraper and shopping complex. The companies agreed to dedicate part of their land to an arts complex. “That was the first time I had heard about the arts center being a real possibility,” then-City Council member Richard Vinroot said at the time. But land on which to build the venue was only part of the equation. So the campaign to bring performing arts to uptown came about in perhaps the most Charlotte way possible: a public-private partnership. “Public-private is a funky moniker for everybody pitchin’ in together,” recalls Hardin Minor, a Charlotte performer tapped to be the mascot for the capital campaign. “I guess you could say I was sort of the joie de vivre, the esprit de corps, the spirit of the building to be,” Minor says. Supporters pitched anyone who would listen. They started the largest cultural arts fundraising drive in the city’s history – many times over. The next largest campaign had a goal a fifth the size of the $25 million PAC boosters originally sought. In 1987, taxpayers approved a $15 million bond package to support At left, John Belk the PAC by a 2-to-1 walks with Rolfe margin. State legNeill along the red carpet to the islators guaranteed groundbreaking for the N.C. a total of $11.5 Blumenthal million. Corporate Performing Arts Center. Below, and individual Belk speaks at Blumenthal's donors contributed second Annual Meeting as a whopping $32 Deborah Harris million. Charlottelooks on. Mecklenburg Schools students even chipped in, paying a quarter apiece for 65,000 bricks in a “Buy a Brick to Build the Magic” campaign. Time tends to make squiggly lines straight. In retrospect, shaky plans seem a sure thing. But the quest for an uptown performing arts center was perilous. Two key tenants – the symphony and ballet – faced uncertain financial futures that put their long-term viability in jeopardy. An economic recession prompted some would-be donors to default on their pledges to the campaign. The arts center had to slash its staff before it even opened to stave off a projected operating budget deficit. 8 SPARK | FALL/WINTER 2017-18

Students buy bricks to help raise funds for the Blumenthal Performing Arts construction.

Supporters, though, were relentless. They knew what this building could do. They saw its potential. “This,” Neill recalls, “was going to be something that would help lift Charlotte up.” And on that late spring day, they packed the future site for the groundbreaking. Minor, the mascot, was the one dressed as a construction worker, taking a bite out of that fake fish sandwich.


By November 1992, the long-awaited structure was ready for its debut. It had taken a dozen years from the first formal public conversation – even longer if you trace the origins back to those early conversations in the 1970s. Its 2,100-seat Belk Theater and 440-seat Booth Playhouse were lit. Glass sparkled in the domed skylight of the 72-foot-tall rotunda. There were, The Observer reported, plenty of bathrooms for patrons to use. The venue also had a name: the North Carolina Blumenthal Performing Arts Center, after Herman and Anita Blumenthal and the Blumenthal Foundation, which kicked in $3.5 million to the capital campaign. The Blumenthals were a civically-involved family, but they eschewed the spotlight. This gift – and the attention that came along with it – was something to which they were unaccustomed. “It was an honest conversation we had,” recalled Philip Blumenthal, one of the couple’s children. “Not that we didn’t want to be involved with it, but did we want to be involved at that level? Ultimately we decided that, yes, this was sort of the right time, the right place. “This was the right project that would really help the city in a big way,” he added. And so, for that grand opening night, the new Blumenthal center became, as Charlotteans were fond of saying at the time, the jewel in the city’s crown. Homegrown musician Loonis McGlohon was there, and so was newsman Charles Kuralt. Roberta Flack walked out in a black sequined dress, right into the middle of the stage and up to the microphone, and she started singing. Strumming my pain with his fingers, Singing my life with his words ... People in the audience looked at each other and smiled. The sound was beautiful. They pointed to their arms. Chills. In the audience, the early visionaries, the people who saw what this building could become knew that they were right. “You sit next to people you didn’t know, but you’re all experiencT ing the same,” Harris recalls. “You’re laughing together. You’re crying together. It is one of the things that transcends everything.” T


Blumenthal Performing Arts provides memorable, sometimes once-in-a-lifetime experiences for audiences who see a Broadway show or a special concert. But behind the scenes, Blumenthal’s impact can be even deeper – sometimes profound.

TRANSFORMING PEOPLE Blumenthal’s Impact Behind the Scenes Goes Deep

By Karen R. Martin



or Anna Hertel and her family, involvement in Blumenthal programs was a real turning point in their lives. Anna, 18, a senior at Ardrey Kell High School, struggled with the structure of the school day at a young age, but when she participated in Blumenthal’s Broadway Junior celebration while in middle school, she discovered a passion for musical theater and greater focus. “She has all these creative juices flowing when she’s doing a show. It stimulates her brain cells, and translates into academic success,” says Anna’s mother, Stacy Hertel. “The whole experience has been so positive for us. Her grades went up! I don’t think (school) would have worked out as well if she were just studying all the time without the ability to be creative and apply some ‘out of the box’ thinking.” Anna participated in Blumenthal’s 2017 High School Musical Theater Awards program, called The Blumey Awards, and at the awards ceremony in May, she earned the Best Actress Blumey Award for her portrayal of Velma Kelly in Chicago. That allowed her to compete in the National High School Musical Theater Awards – The Jimmy Awards – in New York, and while she was there, she got an audition for a new musical. “I owe it all to Blumenthal,” Anna says, fondly recalling her experiences on the Blumenthal stage. “I didn’t even realize what I had, talent-wise, until I got up there onstage, performing for all of Charlotte.” “It was a grand experience – for Anna, and for us as parents,” Stacey Hertel recalls. Experiencing The Blumeys and The Jimmys, where skilled theater professionals judge the student talent onstage, brought a new level of realization for the family: “These professionals are telling the kids, ‘you can do it; you’ve got the good stuff,’ and it motivates them to keep on doing what they love.” Indeed, Anna will keep performing; she has begun auditioning for colleges, with a goal of becoming a theater major with a dance minor. TM



Above, Anna Hertel attends The Jimmy Awards in New York. At right, John Hairston works on his art.

Mural artist John Hairston was delighted to watch families take photos in front of his hip-hop-inspired graffiti in the lobby of the Knight Theater during Breakin’ Convention, an international festival of hip-hop dance theater. “They could have taken a photo anywhere, but to see them do it in front of my work, that’s pretty wild.” And the opportunity to be part of Breakin’ Convention? “It’s not something I’ve taken lightly,” he says.

Continued on Page 8




Continued from Page 9

“Ultimately, our programming serves as a ‘living lab’ to help artists think more broadly than they have before,” says Tom Gabbard, president and CEO of Blumenthal Performing Arts, “and to enable audiences to explore new art forms more broadly than they have before.” Veronica Leahy, a junior at Charlotte Latin School and an accomplished jazz musician who plays the flute, soprano saxophone, clarinet and piano, found Blumenthal’s Charlotte Jazz Festival to be the perfect audience. She competed in and won Blumenthal’s 2016 Loonis McGlohon Young Jazz Artist Competition at the festival. “(It) gave me the confidence and the outlet to be able to express my art,” she says, adding that performing at the Jazz Festival, in front of Wynton Marsalis and the Jazz at Lincoln Center Orchestra professionals, changed her life. She was thrilled this past summer when she attended the Jazz at Lincoln Center’s Summer Jazz Academy, where Marsalis remembered her from their meeting at the Charlotte Jazz Festival. These artists are among many who have found wider audiences thanks to Blumenthal’s commitment to innovative artistic programs and opportunities. Gabbard says future programs may include performances in non-traditional spaces and the introduction of new artists such as the Queen City Biddies, the first and only B-Girl hip-hop dance crew in the Carolinas.


Blumenthal’s programming has connected people through the years in ways that couldn’t have otherwise happened. Gabbard says Blumenthal plays a unique role in bringing people together around creativity. “In this technological age, people are more connected by their phones and less connected in a human way. Blumenthal programming brings them shoulder to shoulder, from different races and different backgrounds. Without us, they wouldn’t have these experiences together.” Hairston agrees, especially with regard to Breakin' Convention. “To see people of all different races, cultures and creeds come together to celebrate hip-hop as a culture, that’s really cool. You know, people can get caught up in labels, but Blumenthal doesn’t


Veronica Leahy, a junior at Charlotte Latin School, found the Charlotte Jazz Festival to be a perfect outlet to express her art.

10 SPARK | FALL/WINTER 2017-18

Artist John Hairston works on a painting. He says Blumenthal is energizing the local art community by inviting visual artists to be a part of the performance experience.

treat art like that; they’re showing us that hip-hop deserves the same amount of respect as any other music.” He says that by inviting Charlotte visual artists to be part of a performance experience, Blumenthal is energizing the local art community; as word of mouth spreads, artists become inspired to share ideas, find new venues and impact new audiences. “A lot of people think art doesn’t involve much social interaction, but that’s not the case. As an artist, things will open up for you when you make yourself visible.” Leahy credits Blumenthal for connecting her with other musicians in Charlotte and beyond. She has been asked to perform at other Blumenthal events, which she believes has made her a stronger musician and even more connected with other jazz musicians. As a result, she co-founded Melodic Minors, a nonprofit group of musicians that provides free concerts at assisted living centers, charity events and other venues. “We believe that music can provide a source of jobs and happiness, to take the worries away,” she says. So far, the group has recruited 20 volunteer student musicians who might otherwise not have met … and it all started with the Blumenthal, Leahy says. “They’re giving kids with a lot of drive an outlet to perform and make connections. They’ve given me the confidence and the outlet to be able to express myself and give back to our community.” Anna Hertel says that The Blumey Awards opened doors for her as well. “Just the opportunity to meet a lot of students from other schools, and to perform in front of people who support the arts in Charlotte – it’s been really magical.” She has stayed in touch with many of the Blumey student performers, bonding over their shared passion for musical theater, and she is grateful for all the professional contacts she’s made. “Blumenthal has connections with casting directors all over, giving kids like me a chance to show what we can do.” T


INVESTED IN THE ARTS PNC Bank Presented Blumenthal's Business Leaders for the Arts Award



PNC Bank is awarded the Blumenthal Business Leaders for the Arts award for its investment in the arts.

By Liz Rothaus Bertrand

reating a vibrant cultural life in Charlotte takes many partners – great artists, inspiring performances and key support from business leaders who understand the value of promoting arts opportunities in Charlotte. With the region’s nonprofit arts and culture industry generating $359 million in economic activity every year, according to Americans for the Arts, many businesses see why investing in the arts makes sense, both for the bottom line and for a better community. This philosophy is at the heart of Board chair Kristin Hills Blumenthal’s Business Leaders for the Arts, Bradberry speaks at the BBLA dinner. a network of local businesses that meets quarterly to learn about industry trends and celebrate the ways business investments in the arts have had a positive impact in Charlotte. Members believe the arts are an essential

component in building a stronger community, boosting education, creating a vibrant economy and building a better future workforce. In September, PNC Bank was awarded the second annual Business Leaders of the Arts Award for its leadership, investment and commitment to the arts in the Charlotte region. PNC Bank has been the presenting sponsor of Blumenthal’s Broadway Lights Series since 2014. The company also has a strong history of supporting many different arts and cultural events around the Carolinas, as well as throughout the nation. “PNC is an important partner for us because they see, as we do, that the arts are a common thread that binds us together,” said Kristin Hills Bradberry, Blumenthal’s board of trustees chair, when presenting the award. “Yes – it is entertaining, joyful, surprising and sometimes awe inspiring. But they believe as we do that the arts build community and understanding. And that, today more than ever, is the end goal.” For more information on joining Blumenthal’s Business Leaders for the Arts, contact William VanOrsdel, corporate relations manager, at 704-379-1355, or email T



By Liz Rothaus Bertrand

or this performance, please turn on your cell phone, tablet or computer. That’s so you can tune in to the new podcast series, “On Life and Meaning,” hosted by Mark Peres, and sponsored by Blumenthal Performing Arts. Peres, a professor of leadership studies at Johnson & Wales University, also founded Charlotte Viewpoint in 2003, an independent online magazine covering arts and culture in the Charlotte area. “On Life and Meaning” features in-depth interviews with artists, entrepreneurs, philosophers, executives, innovators and civic leaders – many of whom have personal ties to the Queen City. Guests share how their own philosophies have been shaped by challenges as well as triumphs. Championing this new project fits in well with Blumenthal President Tom Gabbard’s vision of supporting innovation in the community. He also hopes the podcast reassures listeners they are not alone in navigating difficulties when they hear that many of these leaders have also faced daunting situations in their lives. “That insight is helping to create a stronger community, and that’s part of what Blumenthal is all about,” says Gabbard.

Mark Peres does a podcast that is sponsored by Blumenthal Performing Arts.

He sees the podcast genre as a great tool for building connections. First, it’s an affordable way to create niche content for a wide potential audience, since production costs are lower than they would be for radio or TV. Second, it allows listeners to be in control and curate their playlist according to their own interests. As for “On Life and Meaning,” things are just getting started, and Gabbard hopes Charlotteans will help shape what’s yet to come. “Mark is learning every day, and we encourage people to give him ideas and constructive feedback,” says Gabbard. T





in Pictures

A media wall, to the right, was a new addition for Breakin' Convention this year.

Artist Deneer Davis demonstrates graffiti art for a young girl at Breakin' Convention. Davis commented on Instagram: "What I loved most was her determination. She told me to spray her name from the 'tippy top all the way to the tippy bottom.' Laser beam focus!"

12 SPARK | FALL/WINTER 2017-18


Blumenthal President and CEO Tom Gabbard, left, and choreographer/ director Matthew Bourne speak during a Blumenthal Business Leaders for the Arts meeting.



Salah teaches a master class on break dancing during Street Jam in October.

Students participating in Blumenthal's Broadway experience pose on the stage for Cats at the Neil Simon Theater in New York.


Students in the Re:Bourne group take a group shot before performing a short introductory number to Matthew Bourne's The Red Shoes in October.

Freedom Schools students make their way to a showing of The Little Mermaid at Belk Theater in July.


A crowd enjoys "Hamiltunes: The Great American Sing-along," part of the free Sounds on the Square summer concert series at Spirit Square.




THANK YOU TO OUR GENEROUS SUPPORTERS Contributions received from Oct. 30, 2016-Oct. 30, 2017


Peg and Jay Adamczyk Barbara and David Goodman*


Dr. Milton and Arlene Berkman Philanthropic Fund Victoria and Porter Durham Beth and Jonathan Feit Vickie and Tom Gabbard Bob and Jena Gallagher Sandra and Stephen Godofsky Laura and Jeff Hay Renee and Chris Hobart Christine and David Longo Mr. and Mrs. William B. McGuire, Jr. Michael, Jaime and Allie Monday


Betsy and Alfred Brand Dorlisa and Peter Flur Belinda and Timothy Gunter Nancy and David Hauser Joan Zimmerman


Cathy and Jim Baily Mr. William M. Barnhardt and Mrs. Nancy B. Thomas* Christine and Arthur Becker The Blumenthal Foundation – Amy and Philip Blumenthal Robin and Lea Burt Hona Childers and Daniel Browne Elizabeth and James Faulkner Michele and Walter Fisher Mr. and Mrs. Robert H. Gibbs Dale Halton and Fred Wagner Beverly and Jim Hance Charles and Diane Harrington Rebecca S. Henderson and J. Michael Booe Hope and Dhiaa Jamil Julie and Howard Levine Jane and Hugh McColl Barbara and Josh Meeks Jared Mobley Beth and Robert Monaghan Linda and Tony Pace Mr. and Mrs. George Raftelis Jean and Matthew Salisbury Carolyn and Robert Shaw Rose and Tom Sherard Lori and Eric Sklut Cheryl and Gregory Sprole Michael and Ann Tarwater Tracey and Scott Tozier Melissa and Kevin White


Anonymous Becky and Michael Alcione Elizabeth Austin Shavonda and Reginald Bean Julie and Riaz Bhamani Jeremy and Connie Blaney Ben Bourne Crandall C. Bowles Kristin and Buck Bradberry George Brooks Nathalie and Daniel Carrizosa Nan and Hal Clarke

Amy and Alfred Dawson Charlie Elberson Erin Lavely Fisher Karen Griffin and John Galloway Douglas R. and Elizabeth G. Goldstein Randy Griffin Mrs. Gail Grim Patti and Mark Hawley* Nora and Thomas Hughes Susan and David Jamison Juanita and Lloyd Johnson Janet and Neil Kaplan The Leon Levine Foundation– Sandra and Leon Levine Dr. Shannon Moran and Mr. Joseph Lovallo Charlotte and Arthur Mott Anna and Tom Nelson Robert H. Norville, Jr. Jeanne and Rick Puckett D. Nelson Rogers Wendy and Frank Rosen Brenda and Bill Ryan Jaye Salter and Daniel Brewster Mr. and Mrs. Jason C. Schmidly Gail Sharps Myers Lisa and Glenn Sherrill Norma and Rodney Short Sara and Morgan Spencer Patricia and John Stewart Jennifer and David Teifer Carrie and Jeff Teixeira Jacqueline A. Tucker Ed Weisiger, Jr. and Betsy Fleming Mr. and Mrs. Michael L. White Karen and Edgar Whitener Bob and Dara Whiting Johnnie Willis and Michael Green Lisa and Kenny Wilson Amy Wooden and Joe Kolodziej Anja and David Zimmerman


Anonymous (2) Holly and Jeff Atkins Randy Baker Laura Baker and Family Bryan and Kristen Barboza Anne and John Barry Renee and Mike Baumbach Joanne and Steve Beam Joyce and Andrew Berger The Donald H. and Barbara K. Bernstein Family Foundation Betsy Blackwell and John Watson Mr. and Mrs. Alan Blumenthal Andrew Blumenthal and Stephanie Baumann Sam Blumenthal Peggy and Ray Bouley Laura and Sam Bowles Chris and Steve Brace Bill and Robin Branstrom Pat and Tim Brier Kathleen Britton Mary and Frank Brown James Bullock Dr. Chris Burkett Sarah and Bret Busby Joy and Chris Butler

Karmen Cassell Steve Clifford Dr. Elaine and Steve Coats Lori and Derek Copeland Catherine Cordle Harvey and Muri Corzin Lorin, Erica, and Lydia Crenshaw Rose and Bill Cummings Karin and Sean Davies Joni and Aaron Davis Gloria and Peter De Arcangelis Jennie Derby Pamela and Greg Dills Jim Donahue Claude Duet Michele Durkin Marcia and Bob Dynko Sidney and Andres Echevarria Kelli Enos Chad and Denise Everett Windy and Jef Fullagar Marilyn and David Furman Todd E. Gardner, MD Michael George Joseph and Carol Gigler Todd Glenham William Griesser Debby and Mike Groenhout Kathy R. Hairston Neil Handelsman Robin and Blaine Hawkins Dr. Koh Herlong Eric, Lori, Halle and Casey Hillman Juliet and Brian Hirsch Sarah Hollar and Peter Macon Carol and Chris Horn Mr. and Mrs. William T. Houser Larissa and Ken Huber Peggy and Jim Hynes Kathe N. Ingle Beth Ipock Lynn Jeffrey Michelle Johnson Lyndon W. Kennedy Virginia A. Kern Mary Jean and Howard L. Kushner Patty and Chris Lambert Eleanor Ehrhart and Dominick Landi Marc and Xhenis Levack Margie and Victor Lisciani Julianne Marley Ashley and Scott Mattei Jill Maxwell and Joe Pallassino Suzy and Ed McMahan Karen and Robert Micklash Ms. Marie Mitchell Colin Mutter Anne and William Newcomb Janet and Peter Nixon Brian Noonan Paul Norris Andrew Olah Jacob Palillo Susan and Dale Pond Gregory Price Jim Putnam Dave and Mary Pylipow Nadine and Leif Rauer Dr. and Mrs. Richard S. Roberts Lisa and Robert Rollins

Anne Schmitt Vesime and Marty Schroering Michael Serulneck Mr. and Mrs. Donald J. Sherrill Deanna and Norman Shue Peggy and Pope Shuford Andrew Silliker The Skinkle-Tona Family Dr. Ramada Smith and Mr. Kevin Smith Tom E. Smith Judith Smith Dr. Matthew Wheelock and Dr. Jill Smith-Wheelock Cindy and David Soliday Jeri Dianne Stancil Dia and Paul Steiger Sheri and Kelly Straub Suzanne and Michael Stritch Dr. and Mrs. Robert Sullivan David Thomason Ellen and Ron Vilas Sandy and Greg Vlahos Neya Warren and John Hartmayer Mary Ellen and Reid Wilkerson In loving memory of my Rip – Cathey Winfield Nancy and Robert Wyatt


Anonymous Keith Alyea and Fidel Montoya Trina Anderson Cheryl Barringer and Mike Sherman Dr. and Mrs. Edward S. Baum Aaron Beck Ralph Beck, in memory of Linda Scott Bengel Mr. and Mrs. Tony Bikhazi Bonnie and Jim Blair Rachel E. Brackett Mona Brandon Susan and Greg Brouse Peter and Cynthia Buck Jesica Bullrich Karen and Kevin Chapman Mary Catherine and Robert Chesney Delane and Walter Clark Brent Clevenger Charlotte Cochrane Linda and Richard Cook Chris Cope Lori and Roger Cuddy Bill Dantos Donna and Al de Molina Dena R. Diorio Betty Doria Pepper and Roddey Dowd, Sr. Brigid and James Downs Bobby Drakeford Christine and James Drost Marcy and Fred Dumas Dr. Bryan Edmiston and Mr. Felipe G. Edmiston Steven J. Ellis Rachel and Jonathan Ellis Elaine and Jeffrey Fagan Joyce Staley Ford Kayla Freeman

Steven and Darcy Garfinkle Dr. Glenn Gaston John R. Georgius Robin Gershen Mr. and Mrs. Mike Greene Molly and Robert Griffin Pamela Hanna, M.D. Donna and Randy Helton Jennifer Henry Sherri and Waddie Heyward Kathy and Ben Hill James Hill Michelle and Brian Howell Kathy and Charlie Izard David S. Jacobson Linda and Kerry Kenner Joan Kirschner Janice S. Ladley Beverly and John Lassiter James Ledbetter Richard and Anna Marriott Mr. and Mrs. KP McCormick Betsy and T. Bragg McLeod Dr. and Mrs. Alden Milam Shelley and Andy Misiaveg Jill and Ed Newman Marian M. Nisbet Wendy Oglesby and David Higbe Dr. Valerie and Mr. Barton O'Kelley Drs. Elaine and Thomas Pacicco Jack Page and Robert Myers Anne Patefield Mr. and Mrs. Edwin B. Peacock III Donna and Steve Pernotto Joy Pinchback Kathy and Jerry Price Fidel and Laura Prieto Cindy and Randy Rice Sally and Russell Robinson William R. Rollins Carla and Ed Rose Ken Rothmel Mikel Rogers Ryan Chryll and Wayne Salow Dr. and Mrs. Daniel Schneck Jane and Nelson Schwab Dr. Marvin Shapiro and Mrs. Anita Shapiro Emilie and Gene Sharbaugh Mr. and Mrs. Charles M. Shelton, Sr. The Marc and Mattye Silverman Foundation Jan and Scott Smith Wayne B. Smith, Jr. and Indun Patrick Claire and Jim Talley Ben C. Taylor, III, Ph.D. Mr. and Mrs. Jack H. Thomas Sandi and Ben Thorman Ellen and Jim Wade Jacqueline and Rusty Wasco Margo and Dave Wehrung Drs. James and Jackie Wheeler Teresa and Stick Williams Pat and Bill Williamson Krista and Thomas Wilson * Members of The Legacy Society at Blumenthal

Membership gifts make inspiration possible in our community. JOIN TODAY! or call 704.379.1288 14 SPARK | FALL/WINTER 2017-18


CATALYST PARTNERS The Arts & Science Council supports Blumenthal Performing Arts’ 2017 fiscal year budget with operating and programmatic grants.



Blumenthal Performing Arts receives support from the North Carolina Arts Council, a division of the Department of Cultural Resources.




Preferred Caterer





$7,500+ Publix Super Markets Charities

Bradley British American Business Council C design Inc. Deloitte

InterCon Building Corporation Keatley Wealth Management, LLC King & Spalding LLP KPMG

McKenney’s, Inc Moore & Van Allen PLLC Rodgers Builders Inc. SteelFab, Inc.

Troutman Sanders LLP UTC Aerospace Systems

$2,500+ Adams Electric Company Ashley Furniture Baird Private Wealth Management BDO Bryan Cave Carolina CAT Charlotte Insurance

Charlotte Paint Co. Inc. Chicago Title Insurance Company Gray Dog Investments, Inc. Katten Muchin Rosenman LLP McCracken & Lopez, PA McGuireWoods LLP McIlveen Family Law

Midrex Technologies Parker Poe Adams & Bernstein LLP PMMC Premier Golf, Inc. PricewaterhouseCoopers Robinson Bradshaw & Hinson P.A. RSM US LLP

Sentinel Risk Advisors South State Bank The Dowd Foundation, Inc. Walbridge Southeast White Knight Engineered Products, Inc.

$1,000+ BB&T Cabarrus Glass Company Inc. Carousel Capital Charlotte Business Journal Crosland Southeast

Donald Haack Diamonds & Fine Gems Galvan Industries, Inc. Garmon & Company, Inc. Commercial Flooring High Performance Technologies

Hood Hargett & Associates Hoopaugh Grading Company, LLC Howard Brothers Electric Jenkins Peer Architects McGrann Paper Corporation McVeigh & Mangum


Mechanical Contractors, Inc. NC Interiors Contracting, Inc. Odell Associates Preferred Electric Co., Inc. Robert E. Mason & Associates, Inc. Rogers Unloading Service

Schindler Elevator Corp. Tippens & Zurosky LLP Ty Hardee Financial Velligan Medical Services, PC Xentegra



Nonprofit Organization U.S. Postage PAID Charlotte, NC Permit No. 3036

130 N. Tryon St. • Charlotte, NC 28202

Celebrating the big dream to create Blumenthal Performing Arts Center, its first 25 years and hopes for the future.

Our 25th anniversary season is presented to the community by



Education Programs and Student Scholarships

SPARK Magazine Fall 2017  
SPARK Magazine Fall 2017  

SPARK Magazine Fall 2017