Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Orange, White and Blue Gala


Devin Dominguez invited Terry and I to Evening in the Grove, was an Orange, White and Blue Gala honoring the Orlando Magic with proceeds benefiting the Art and History Museums of Maitland. I wore a blue and white striped shit,with a blue tie and jacket. The event was at the Sheraton Orlando North Hotel in Maitland. I had sketched a wedding reception here once. As soon as guests entered the hotel. they were greeted by Ashley and Amy, two of the Orlando Magic dancers. I wandered around the lobby looking at all the silent auction items but I couldn't find a spot to sketch. Dawn Schreiner was doing quick portraits for anyone who wanted to sit for a bit. There were several Orlando Magic players, Bo Outlaw and Nick Anderson, sitting by themselves but they looked bored and so I decided that the chipper dancers were my best bet for a decent sketch during the cocktail hour. They posed with people and waited patiently between photo shoots. They didn't quite know shat to make of me and they peeked at the sketch in its early stages.

They wandered off and I debated about abandoning the sketch. I figured they were creeped out by the loony with the sketchbook. I decided to focus on features of the room and before long, the dancers were back. Amy peeked again and said, "Moving on the ink, this is getting serious." This time I nailed down the dancers slender proportions. Raffle tickets were being sold by the arm length. Bidding on the silent auction items involved downloading a program on the smart phone where bids stacked up digitally, and you were even warned if someone outbid you. I tried to limit my palette to blue, white and orange. When I finished the sketch, I found my way to the dining area. The salads had just been served, so my timing was perfect. Speed painter, Tony Corbitt was on stage doing a painting of Paul McCartney of the Beetles. Tony usually takes his shirt off when he paints but event organizers insisted he keep his shirt on. I'm always impressed with the speed in which he nails a celebrity face using just white paint on a black board.

The live auction was lively with one of Tony's paintings bringing in over $300. Henry Maldonado,  president of thee Enzian Theater, acted as the Emcee. Speakers pointed out that the Orlando Magic Youth Fund had distributed over $17 million dollars through the Orlando Magic Youth Fund. Programs like, Journey to the Arts, help bring culture to at risk youth who might never get that experience otherwise. A young woman named  Mercedes Beaudoin got behind the mic to talk about her experience as an intern working for the Maitland Art and History Museums. She spoke of how much she learned and how grateful she was. The arts offered a long lasting meaningful purpose. Then she choked up as she said, "especially since my mother died recently." The room grew quiet as she regained her composure and spoke about how important the arts are in our lives. Everyone stood and clapped as she left the stage. The evening brought in a net total of $48,200. All monies raised will support art and history programming at the Art and History Museums of Maitlnd.

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