Palm Beach Symphony Annual Gala Breaks Fundraising Record

Members and guests raise over $550K in support of Symphony’s mission and outreach programs

Palm Beach, Fla. (February 23, 2017) – The Palm Beach Symphony held its 15th annual gala, Fire & Ice: Symphony Beneath the Stars, at The Breakers Palm Beach on Monday, February 20, 2017.  Over 250 members and guests enjoyed an elegant evening with cocktails, dinner, dancing, and a live auction, as well as a private performance by world-renowned cellist, Amit Peled.  The stylish affair raised over $550,000, a new fundraising record for the Palm Beach Symphony, thanks in part to a matching gift from the Klorfine Foundation.

Symphony members and enthusiasts were challenged by the foundation with a limited-time campaign to raise funds that would be matched up to $250,000 in support of gala efforts.  All funds raised will help Palm Beach Symphony fulfill its mission of cultivating classical music and growing its community and educational outreach programs throughout the greater Palm Beaches.

Guests were greeted in the Mediterranean Room where they enjoyed a cocktail reception featuring music by a PBS piano trio.  One musician was honored to play a limited edition series piano on display for the first time in the U.S., the Bösendorfer Artist Series Klimt Woman in Gold, considered a fine art piece as much as a top-rated instrument.  The piano, hand-made in Austria, is a brand new piano model for one of the most respected piano manufacturers, and the first in the limited series.

Later, guests proceeded to dinner in the Venetian Room fully adorned with white accents and finishing touches to complement the night’s Fire & Ice theme.  Gala co-chairs Nannette Cassidy and Philip M. Reagan, welcomed and thanked guests for their support of the organization and its programs. Then the room quieted for a riveting performance by cello virtuoso Amit Peled, who entertained with John William’s Theme from Schindler’s List and David Popper’s Hungarian Rhapsody accompanied by piano.

Dale McNulty, Palm Beach Symphony board president, thanked the gala co-chairs, along with honorary chairs, Mary and Don Thompson, for creating a spectacular evening in honor and memory of Mercedes Cassidy, a longtime member and friend of the Palm Beach Symphony.  David McClymont, Executive Director of the Palm Beach Symphony, highlighted the organization’s educational and community outreach programs and introduced a local high-school student, Victoria Bran-Lopez, who last year received a violin from its instrument donation program, to speak about her experience.

“The Palm Beach Symphony has experienced tremendous growth and success over the past year,” noted David McClymont, Executive Director of the Palm Beach Symphony. “Because of our many music supporters, we are making a mark as one of Florida’s finest orchestras, and will continue our commitment to expand music programming in schools and communities throughout the Palm Beaches.”

Fundraising efforts were topped off with a live auction by Neil Saffer that helped the Symphony meet its campaign goals.  The evening closed with lively music by the Bob Hardwick Band and guests dancing into the late hours.

Guests in attendance at the gala included Philip Reagan, Nannette Cassidy, Maria Cassidy, Don and Mary Thompson, Dale and Marietta McNulty, Leslie Rose, Denise McCann, Leonard and Norma Klorfine, James Borynack, Adolfo Zaralegui, Leslie Blum, Jerome J. Claeys III, Don Ephraim, Maxine Marks, Paul and Sandra Goldner, Arlette Gordon, Gary Lachman, Linda Fellner, Joseph Andrew and Carol Hays, Lars and Gay Henriksen, John Herrick, Peter Heydon, Charles and Ann Johnson, Elaine Kay, Howard and Patricia Lester, Harry and Marie Bissell, Michael and Amy McGowan, Charles and Kathy Miller, Dawn Meiners, Herme de Wyman Miro, Ellis J. and Nancy Parker, Lois Pope, Kenneth and Karen Rogers, Marguerite Rosner, Tom and Tricia Trimble, Irma Maria Murphy and Sieglinde Wikstrom.

The Symphony thanks the Grand Maestro Benefactor Sponsor, Findlay Galleries, for their generosity and support of the gala.

About the Palm Beach Symphony

The mission of the Palm Beach Symphony is to engage, educate and entertain the greater community of the Palm Beaches through live performances of inspiring orchestral music. The Palm Beach Symphony was founded in 1974 in recognition of the need for a professional orchestra in Palm Beach. The orchestra is celebrated for delivering spirited and exacting performances led by Artistic & Music Director Ramón Tebar, while the organization continues to expand its educational and community programs with children’s concerts, student coaching and masterclasses, instrument donations and free public concerts.   The Symphony performs in a variety of historically important and modern venues including the Raymond F. Kravis Center for the Performing Art, the Henry Morrison Flagler Museum, Mar-a-Lago, The Society of the Four Arts and Benjamin Hall.  For more information, visit



Link for photos: 

Photo I.D.s

025_PBS17_Maria Cassidy and Nannette Cassidy (Gala Co-Chair)

029_PBS17_Alyssa Zebrowsky and Philip Reagan (Gala Co-Chair)

049_PBS17_Amy and Michael McGowan

051_PBS17_Marietta and Dale McNulty

070_PBS17_Paul and Sandra Goldner

071_PBS17_Leslie Blum, Joseph Andrew and Carol Hays

075_PBS17_Don and Mary Thompson (Honorary Chairs)

101_PBS17_Maxine Marks and Don Ephraim

119_PBS17_Leonard and Norma Klorfine

149_PBS17_John and Amy Collins

151_PBS17_Leslie Rose and Denise McCann

168_PBS17_Elizabeth Dennis and Ruby Rinker

178_PBS17_Maude Cook, Herme de Wyman Miro, Lois Pope

184_PBS17_Holly Johnson Barlett, Charles and Ann Johnson, Sarah Johnson, Chauncey Johnson

187_PBS17_Donna Borynack, James Borynack

355_PBS17_Amit Peled and Victoria Bran-Lopez

426_PBS17_Dawn Meiners and David McClymont

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