Sunday, February 25, 2018

ManDoki Soulmates Give Stellar Performance During U.S. "Wings of Freedom" Concert

Last month, I was invited to see the wildly popular ManDoki Soulmates, led by world-renowned musician, producer, songwriter and Hungarian refugee Leslie Mandoki, give an inspirational performance during the U.S. ‘Wings of Freedom’ concert debut at the iconic Beacon Theatre in Manhattan.  The audience included everyone from adoring fans and celebrities, to politicians and dignitaries.

The highly anticipated ‘Wings of Freedom’ post-GRAMMY® concert was an all star line up of performers including Leslie Mandoki, Bobby Kimball (Toto), John Helliwell, Chris Thompson (Manfred Mann’s Earth Band), Nick Van Eede (Cutting Crew), Bill Evans, Randy Brecker, Till Brönner, Cory Henry and Julia Mandoki.  It was an incredible experience to witness such greats perform Grammy award-winning favorites like Blinded by the Lights,’ ‘I Just Died in Your Arms(my personal favorite) and ‘RosannaThere were countless standing ovations as the audience begged for more. 

“We are thrilled to have played a successful concert yesterday in the heart of mankind, New York City... Our music was created to build bridges that unite us and our songs are a personal handwritten love letter to our audience. There is alot of talk of what divides us these days; however, we wanted to focus on what unites us. That is the spirit of the ManDoki Soulmates” said Leslie Mandoki.

Leslie Mandoki founded the concept group, ManDoki Soulmates’ in 1992 with such acclaimed musicians as Ian Anderson (Jethro Tull), Bobby Kimball (Toto), Jack Bruce (Cream) and jazz-rock star Al Di Meola.  The group grew immensely over the next two decades, and has since included legends like David Clayton-Thomas, Chaka Khan, Chris Thompson, Steve Lukather, Nick van Eede, Eric Burdon, Nik Kershaw, Greg Lake, Randy and Michael Brecker, Bill Evans, John Helliwell, Mark Hart, Tony Carey, Mike Stern, Midge Ure, Anthony Jackson, Victor Bailey, Pino Palladino, Paul Carrack, Cory Henry, Peter Frampton and Jon Lord.  The group has released 10 albums and travels worldwide performing remastered versions of hits from each band member. 

The performance also helped benefit MusiCares, a charity that provides financial and medical assistance for music individuals.  MusiCares works to improve the health and welfare of those in the musical community.

It was an unforgettable performance and will forever be unmatched.  The endless talent and passion possessed by this group is rare.  If ever there was a direct shot of inspiration, the ManDoki Soulmates are it.

Friday, February 23, 2018

Youth America Grand Prix Celebrates New York City Ballet Promotions of Dancers Zachary Catazaro and Indiana Woodward

Youth America Grand Prix's (YAGP) First Position Club gathered on Monday evening to celebrate the promotions of two New York City Ballet dancers. Zachary Catazaro has been elevated from soloist to principal dancer and Indiana Woodward from corps de ballet to soloist. Both are YAGP alumni and had much to share about the scholarship program. Board member Suzanne Hall kicked off the evening explaining, "Youth America Grand Prix and its representatives travel the world searching for talented young ballet dancers. Our mission is to provide a platform showcasing their skill and artistry to the world's most renowned professional ballet companies. The experience and opportunity they receive as a result of their hard work and determination is unparalleled. It is for these reasons I decided to join the organization." The program then turned to vintage video of each dancer’s YAGP audition back when they were 14.  
Zachary Catazaro, Susan Gluck Pappajohn, Indiana Woodward

Board member Susan Gluck Pappajohn moderated a conversation with the dancers, sharing YAGP's ongoing success in sending talent to the world’s most prominent ballet companies, “In American Ballet Theatre 58% of its dancers come from YAGP, San Francisco Ballet 37%, and the Royal Ballet in London 24%. Even at New York City Ballet 18% of its dancers having gone through YAGP.”

Dance enthusiasts attending included Maria-Christina Anzola and John Heimann, Valentino Carlotti, Lane Harwell, YAGP Board member Judith M. Hoffman, Caroline Hyman, Julia Lourie, Emily Reifel, George Vanderploeg, and Hal Witt.
Photos courtesy of Sylvain Gaboury

Tuesday, February 20, 2018

JEZ Magazine Partners with together1heart

Last month I attended the launch party for JEZ Magazine, in partnership with together1heart at the Monarch Rooftop.  The event was hosted by the February cover stars, supermodel Carol Alt and Mad Men and Teen Wolf star Ian Bohen.

Ian Bohen, Carol Alt, Bill Livermore
together1heart is an organization that works to care for and secure the rights of young women and girls who are victims or at risk of being victims of slavery, and to successfully recover, educate, train, and reintegrate them into society.

“This is an incredible evening for together1heart to announce a partnership with JEZ Magazine,” said Bill Livermore, Executive Director of together1heart. “JEZ is a special publication in that its focus is not just on fashion and beauty, but on how fashion and beauty is deeper than just appearance. To their core, they’re all about social improvement and ways they can work to raise the empowerment of women.”

“This year, together1heart will be focusing on empowering survivors, young victims to surviviorhood, microfinance and microeconomic development, and vocational training. We have a new scholarship program where we believe nine girls will enter university... and study for the next five years” said Livermore.

“This magazine is about culture, style and fashion, but, most importantly, it’s about social change.  We are working with together1heart to help the victims of sex trafficking" said Bohen.

JEZ Magazine hopes to immerse readers into a multicultural world of original fashion and creativity, alongside heartfelt and enlightening interviews. JEZ hopes to encourage a spirit of positivity and philanthropy.

Photos courtesy of PR

Monday, February 19, 2018

Animal Ashram Hosts First Annual Pop- Up Penthouse

Earlier this month, Animal Ashram's Founder Leesa Rowland hosted the Pelush Luxury Faux Furs Fashion Show at Animal Ashram's First Annual Pop-Up Penthouse, at Manhattan's Hotel on Rivington.  Pelush's designer Anna Tagliabue, showcased 20 looks from her Faux Fur Line. 


"I believe in cruelty-free products and that is why I am involved in Animal Ashram's Penthouse Vegan Pop-Up today.. it's great to showcase my work at this event during New York's Fashion Week. Pelush is a wonderful alternative for the modern woman in search of glamour, comfort, and the warmth of a plush coat" said Tagliabue. 

"I am excited to share Animal Ashram's one day only haven for animals and yoga with all the animal lovers in New York City," said Animal's Ashram's Founder, Leesa Rowland. 
Tiffany Brevard

The special all day event included a vegan luncheon donated by WILD Restaurant, adoption opportunities from Animal Haven, and a variety of yoga and meditation classes.   The event ended with cocktails at JLA Lounge, where guests participated in a fabulous raffle and had the chance to shop a variety of amazing vegan products.  Guests also enjoyed a moving live performance of "Take me Home" by singer Tiffany Brevard.  
Animal Ashram provides grants and funding to worthy organizations and individuals offering sanctuary to homeless and helpless animals of all species. Animal Ashram respects and promotes the oneness of life and the principles of ahimsa. Our not-for-profit mission is to raise money for a variety of educational and public outreach programs, provide funding resources and raise awareness of equality of life among all living beings. 

Pelush Luxury Faux Fur's concept has been created to reposition and transform the boundaries of the faux fur world; a ReFAUXlution. Through meticulous research and the selection of the finest Italian fabrics, and the best man-made pelage, each coat is carefully crafted to create a luxurious and elegant experience.

Animal Ashram's vision was brought to light by Hank Stampfl of Revel Rouge Events. Revel Rouge is a bespoke event planning services utilizing innovative and fun concepts.

Photos courtesy of PR

Wednesday, February 14, 2018

Recap: New York Fashion Week F/W 2018 Shows at Angel Orensanz Event Space

  This past weekend I took in a series of incredible shows by a mix of international designers as part of this season's New York Fashion Week.  Hosted by Oxygenetix, this season's official NYFW sponsor, the shows were held at the Angel Orensanz Event Space in downtown Manhattan and included designs by Tisharth By Shivani (India), House of Byfield (Netherlands), Light and Shadow Global Fashion Design (China), George Styler (Serbia), Randa Yousrey (Egypt), Anthony Rubio (USA). 

Each show was starkly different from the one before it and very thought provoking.   The collections ranged from vibrant reds and golds, elaborate head dresses, to muted blues and blush tone pinks.  I had favorite looks from each, but my favorite was definitely the dapper looking pups that totally melted my heart :)  Scroll down to check them out.











What do you think of the collections?  Which is your favorite?

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