NHSO Kicks Off the New Decade at “Vision | 2020 & Beyond Gala”

Wednesday • January 22, 2020

Non-Profit will honor Kathy & Gurdon Wattles, as well as Quartet Awardees: ConnCAT, NewAlliance Foundation, Dr. Peter Schulam, and flutist Chelsea Knox

Grammy®-Award Winner Wayne Escoffery, Master of Ceremonies

The New Haven Symphony Orchestra (NHSO) will usher in the new decade at Vision 2020 & Beyond, a fundraising Gala to be held Saturday, February 15, 2020 at 7:00 p.m. at the Omni New Haven Hotel.

The event will celebrate the NHSO’s continued contributions to its community: artistic excellence, education, innovation, and a storied history – the NHSO is the fourth-oldest orchestra in the United States. Festivities will include live musical performances by NHSO musicians and a jazz combo comprising students from North Haven High School. Attendees will enjoy an opening reception with curated food from Atelier Florian New Haven, a gourmet dinner, and decadent desserts, plus live and silent auctions.

New Haven- born and raised, Grammy Award-Winning saxophonist Wayne Escoffery will lead the evening as Master of Ceremonies and will also perform. Escoffery says, “A healthy ecosystem of music and art is the most powerful unifier; if we continue to take care of the music, the music will take care of us.” To learn more about Mr. Escoffery, visit WayneEscoffery.com.

The NHSO Gala will honor longtime supporters Gurdon & Kathy Wattles, remarkable figures whose stewardship, contributions, and involvement harken back to the 1970’s when Gurdon served as a Board member. Gurdon & Kathy have been instrumental in the Symphony’s overall wellness and have helped the Symphony reach well over one million people with the power of music. Together, they have enriched the cultural landscape of New Haven and beyond.

Additionally, the Symphony will present its first-ever “Quartet Awards” to four people and organizations that exemplify the NHSO’s core contributions to its community:
– Artistic Excellence: Chelsea Knox, former NHSO Principal Flutist and current Principal Flutist of the Metropolitan Opera Orchestra
– Educational Excellence: ConnCAT, represented by CEO Erik Clemons
– Historical Impact:  NewAlliance Foundation, represented by Executive Director Kim Healey
– Excellence in Innovation: Dr. Peter Schulam, MD, PhD, Director of the Tsai Center for Innovative Thinking at Yale

Shari Smith, Gala committee co-chair, added, “The 2020 Gala celebrates the unbelievable impact the NHSO has every year. This foundational arts organization served over 50,000 people last season, including 20,000 children. The New Haven Symphony Orchestra is clearly invested in the well-being of our community and the extraordinary music produced by the musicians. I am thrilled to be so deeply involved.”

After spending many years in New Haven in his 20s, the NHSO’s new music director Alasdair Neale is delighted to be back and participating in the Gala. “One thing that stands out for me is what an exceptionally strong sense of community we have, and how the orchestra has the power to connect us through music,” he observed.

To purchase tickets to the NHSO’s 2020 Gala, visit NewHavenSymphony.org/Gala, email Development@NewHavenSymphony.org, or call (203) 865-0831 ext. 18.

The NHSO Vision | 2020 & Beyond Gala is sponsored by Yale New Haven Hospital, Seabury At Home, and Atelier Florian New Haven, as well as Gesmonde, Pietrosimone & Sgrignari, L.L.C., Omni Hotel New Haven, Hearst CT Media Group, People’s Bank, NewAlliance Foundation, and GHP Media.