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Jefferson Performing Arts Society Sets Attendance Record at 17th annual ‘Pasta & Puccini’

Jeri Nims, Pat and Henry Shane and Sibyl White

Steven Hronek Photographs

The 35th year of the Jefferson Performing Arts Society has been one of record-setting success, even in the midst of economic downturn, and the nonprofit’s 17th annual “Pasta & Puccini” fundraising gala was no exception. Guests flocked to the community theater’s Friday, October 19, event, setting a record for gala attendance with 650 attendees.

Patrons, committee members and local celebrities donned elaborate headpieces to keep with the theme, “Un Ballo Machera (The Masked Ball),” leaving many more apt to break it down on the dance floor. It was no difficult task for Maestro Dennis Assaf and the JPAS Orchestra to coax partygoers out of their seats with their lively performance of big band music. Assaf’s wife and daughter, Nancy and Ariel respectively, treated the audience to the soaring heights of their voices, as did Italian tenor Fillippo Pina Castiglioni and New Orleans native Micah Desonnier.

Several of the night’s highlights belonged to guests – lucky Gloria Woodward won the Raffle VIP Wine Experience excursion to Sonoma, Calif., and the Pastor and Pettit couples placed the top bids on stays in Chef Andrea Appuzzo’s private villa in Capri, Italy.

Proceeds from the gala will benefit JPAS performances and arts outreach, including children’s programming and theatrical productions.

Event at a Glance
What:  17th annual “Pasta & Puccini,” benefiting the Jefferson Performing Arts Society
When:  Friday, October 19
Where: Hyatt Regency Hotel

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