On The Avenue

A Fresh Perspective at the National Dance Institute Gala

by Gabe Paoletti Photographed by Noam Galai/Getty Images
Tuesday, April 25, 2017
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Some of New York’s most distinguished patrons of dance assembled last night at the National Dance Institute’s 41st Annual Gala at the PlayStation Theater. The event began with a cocktail reception, before comedian and actor Bill Irwin introduced the NDI children who performed a number of breathtaking dance routines that reiterated the importance and power of the arts. This was followed by an auction to support the NDI hosted by none other than Alec Baldwin, who applied his renowned charm and charisma to the job. Items auctioned off include a theatre ticket package featuring two seats and a backstage tour of Hamilton, an original work of art by American artist Red Grooms, and a reservation for six at Rao’s Restaurant in NYC.

After the auction, the NDI honored moody singer-songwriter Josh Groban for his continued support of arts education. In his acceptance speech the indie darling reiterated his commitment towards arts education stating that his goal is, through supporting programs providing education in the arts, to give “young people the opportunity to truly find themselves and find greatness in themselves; whether they go into [the arts] professionally or not”. Also honored was long-time NDI Board member, Arnold S. Penner and his wife, Madaleine Berley, among others who have been involved in promoting and supporting arts programs. The awardees were honored with a performance by the boys of NDI choreographed by Christopher d’Amboise and a musical medley performance by stage actor Terrence Mann. The night was capped off with a stirring performance of “Saints”, an upbeat number performed by the NDI kids.

In attendance were a number of other renowned guests who showed up to support arts education including Michael Cerveris, actress Kathryn Grody; Broadway actress and NDI board member Charlotte d’Amboise, New York City Ballet dancers Daniel Ulbricht, Tiler Peck, Sterling Hyltin, Jared Angle, Amar Ramasar, Tyler Angle, Teresa Reichlen, former New York City Ballet dancer Wendy Whelan, and others.


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