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March 07, 2009 - Another Thundering Crescendo

What: 4th annual gala benefit for the Rocky Mountain Center for Musical Arts

Where: Renaissance Suites Hotel-Broomfield Co

When: Saturday March 7, 2009

Time: 6 p.m.

Ticket Prices: Tickets are $70 per person

Beneficiary: Rocky Mountain Center for Musical Arts

EMCEE: Lois Melkonian of KOA Radio

Corporate Chairperson(s): Gale Pelkey

Founders: Peggy Bruns and Kathy Kucsan

Co-Chair(s): Pris Walker and Louise Christopher

Executive Director: Peggy Bruns

Committee Members: Carol Ackerman, Shelley Bernhard, Gabi Bottcher, Peggy Bruns, Shelley Hitchcock, Jane Lippmann, Dorothy Myers, Walter Sharp and Maria Wyshak

Staff: Peggy Bruns, Louise Christopher, Nora-Ellen Long, Nancy Brace, Pris Walker, Sue Eyler and Deanna Kaufman

Catering: Renaissance Suites Hotel

Entertainment: Choosing June, The RMCMA Jazz Ensemble

Music: Nancy Brace

Of note: Zac Garcia

Sponsors: Renaissance Suites; Brighton Cardiology; Palace Construction; The Law Offices of Julia M. Knearl; Mehaffy, Brubaker & Ernst; Faegre & Benson, LLP; First Community Bank; Doty, Lyle and Jones; Jasper Animal Hospital-Drs. Doge & Space; Plafair Toys and Camera

Auctioneer: Dax Gillium

Gala Production: Bolder Auctions

Menu: Lemon scented roasted chicken with onion risotto cake and thyme sauce. Spinach salad served with fresh breads and butter. Mountain berry tart and chocolate mousse for dessert

Attendance: 300

Attire: Cocktail

Special Thanks: The nearly 100 businesses that donated to the silent auction

Information: Morrell Printing Solutions

Board of Directors: John Bernhard-President, Mark Timpe-VP, Paul Snider- Secretary, Stanley Guralnick, PhD-Treasurer, Shelley Hitchcock, Jane Lippmann, Walter Sharp and Alejandro Sierra, Faculty Liaison

Blacktie Photos by: Marcelo Mainzer

 RMCMA Founders Peggy Bruns and Kathy Kucsan
RMCMA Founders Peggy Bruns and Kathy Kucsan

It starts with love, love of music, love of children, love of a community.

Put all those things together and what is born is an organization like the Rocky Mountain Center for the Musical Arts. For over a decade the RMCMA has been providing people of all ages in the community with creative musical experiences.

"Music is enough for a lifetime, but a lifetime is not enough for music,”  said Sergei Rachmaninov, and anyone who has felt music as part of their lives will agree. The RMCMA teaches young children to play and  appreciate music, and it does so much more--it brings together those who have who have created music all their lives with those who have a burning desire to join them, either from a young age or after many years of listening.

Saturday's fourth annual "Crescendo!" gala benefit for RMCMA followed in the rich tradition of music galas in elegance of attire; tuxedos and grand gowns abounded, the food and drink were bountiful, the conversation lively and animated. Renaissance Suites Hotel pulled out all the stops to partner with RMCMA in making this another sucessful event. Dozens of volunteers made sure each guest felt welcomed and had a rewarding evening.

It took two rooms to contain all the wonderful silent auction items including travel, dining, apparel, health and beauty; there was even a scooter available for bidding. Guests had plenty of time to compete for their favorite items and were seranaded by harpist  Nancy Brace before being invited into the main salon.

The warm and beautiful Lois Melkonian of KOA Radio acted as emcee for the evening. When guests found their places, she shared a little about the valuable work of RMCMA and called, in turn, the staff and board to be recognized, then each of the table captains from the business partner tables. Lois also asked founders Peggy Bruns and Kathy Kucsan to stand, for without them none of this would have happened.

Lois passed the microphone over to auctioneer Dax Gillium, who ran a fast and fun auction assisted by fellow auctioneers Lu Hays and Larry Deaton, intersperced with jokes. A musical intermission was then provided by Zac Garcia, an 18-year-old, dean's list senior at Peak to Peak High School. Zac, who began his voice study at RMCMA with Patrick Mason, will soon be singing with the Emerald City Opera and aspires to sing with the Metropolitan Opera. Zac gave a lovely rendition of "One Enchanted Evening."

The second part of the auction was where pure generousity and gratitude were displayed as supporters raised their paddles to fill a matching offer of $50,000 made by an anonymous donor.

Lois Melkonian introduced  the folk-pop group Choosing June, featuring singer-songwriters Joan Huntsberry and Julia Knearl, with Andy Langford on mandolin and Rob Layton on bass. The music of Choosing June is sometimes sweet, and at other times somber with a jazzy streak. A little like Indigo Girls for those of us who live in the real world.

The night was completed when the RMCMA Jazz Ensemble packed and overflowed the small stage. Led by Steve Christopher, they played the old classic jazz and ballroom music that brings people to their feet to dance. Singer Marti Moore joined the band, and how so much music can be packed in to such a small package is anybody's guess.

“All music is folk music, I ain't never heard no horse sing a song”--Louis Armstrong

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