November is here and we at Women's ALI can't help but reflect back on October with gratitude. Thank you to all who have joined us in support of young women with your time and financial resources, engagement on social media, and a constant stream of positivity! We are thrilled to be part of the business and artistic community and invite you to share in the momentum we have gained this month. Here are the highlights!
Fall Benefit Recital at the University of Utah Our October launch event, the inaugural Fall Benefit Recital, was a huge success thanks to our many supporters! We appreciate the various business donors and individuals who made our VIP Reception and Silent Auction possible. There was an amazing selection of donations with tickets to the Utah Symphony and Opera and Broadway at the Eccles, an overnight stay/breakfast from the Little America Hotel and the Grand America Hotel, original art works, photography sessions and so much more!
Stephanie Rhodes Russell, Women's ALI Founder and Executive Director, welcomed audience members and supporters and shared her passion for our mission and vision--as well as accompanying the evening's concert! Our host organization, the University of Utah, generously provided space for the evening and all were welcomed by the Director of the School of Music, Dr. Miguel Chuaqui. Thank you to the U! It takes a team to transform dreams into reality and the ALI sisters and Board of Directors all played a critical role in the evening's success, along with our donors and audience members.
Dr. Noelle E. Cockett, Utah State University President
"I want to thank the Women's ALI Executive Board for moving forward on something that really will be transformational for the arts and for the state of Utah as we build women leaders for tomorrow."
Utah State University President, Noelle Cockett shared her support and enthusiasm for Women's ALI in her remarks on leadership. "Networking, mentorship, teaching others is simply opening doors for those that you are connected with... I envision after some years of the Summer Leadership Intensive a whole network of young women in the arts that have been connected together and are helping each other to find opportunities and grab their successes." This vision matches ours at Women's ALI and it is one we hope for all to embrace.
President Cockett concluded her remarks with a special challenge: "I have committed to nominate and sponsor women students from Utah State for the Summer Leadership Intensive and I will be challenging the other presidents in higher education in Utah to do the same." With representatives from the University of Utah--our host for the evening, Weber State University and Brigham Young University in attendance, we are already feeling the support of our community and are excited to see her challenge realized throughout higher education!
Thank you to President Cockett, an astounding leader, for spreading our vision and hope for future young women leaders!
Rising Star Soprano, Rachel Willis-Sørensen Performs
Internationally renowned soprano, Rachel Willis-Sørensen, amazed ALI supporters at the Fall Benefit Recital and taught a masterclass to University of Utah students the following day. She arrived from Italy the evening before the performance and left for Germany shortly after the event, but we couldn't have been more thrilled to be part of her itinerary and to have her support of our mission! "I believe the work of Women's ALI is necessary and important--I could still benefit in my own career from the business and leadership skills they're focusing on in the Summer Leadership Intensive!"
Rachel's performance was simply spectacular and all in attendance seemed to agree with the words of one audience member: "I have never enjoyed a recital as much as I enjoyed this one." She performed works by Benjamin Britten, Richard Strauss, Mozart, and Giuseppe Verdi. After her nuanced performance of "Morgen" op. 27, no.4 by Strauss, the applause seemed as if it would never fade. The delicate sensitivity from both vocalist and pianist, Stephanie Rhodes Russell, was noted by several audience members. No one was surprised when a standing ovation brought Rachel and Stephanie back to the stage for one final number! Thank you for sharing your talents with Women's ALI. It was a truly unforgettable evening.
Before the performance, our VIP reception guests enjoyed a beautiful spread of charcuterie and cheeses designed by our event caterer, Lindsey Newman of Lulubelle Cakes. The displays were both stunning and delicious! Our event photographer, Hannah Walker, captured them with mouth-watering perfection!
Local Young Artist Engagement
Women's Artistic Leadership Initiative carefully designs educational programs for high school juniors and seniors and college undergraduates. The Fall Benefit Recital featured performances by young artists of that very demographic--Erika Rosen, Abi Scoville, and Elizaveta Shaikhulina.
Erika Rosen is a 17-year old harpist from Murray, Utah and began playing the harp at a very early age. She has participated in the American Society National Harp competition and placed fourth in her age division. She performed, "Chanson de Mai" Op. 40 by Alphonse Hasselmans.
Abi Scoville is currently a senior at Lone Peak High School and has been involved in theatre and vocal performance for the past 10 years. Most recently, she was an award recipient at the Utah Shakespeare Competition and was awarded the Ray Jones Scholarship. She captivated our audience with a scene from William Shakespeare's Richard III.
Elizaveta Shaikhulina is a native of St. Petersburg, Russia and a current student at Brigham Young University. She has been the recipient of many prestigious international and local awards. She won the Grand Prix at the International Erdenko Competition in Belgrade and has performed with the BYU Symphony the past two years. Elizaveta and her wonderful accompanist, Debbie Robertson, performed Sonata in A Major for Violin and Piano, by César Franck.
A special THANK YOU to our donors:
Sequest Aquariam President Noelle E. Cockett
Kelli Rhodes Utah Metropolitan Ballet
Eccles Theatre Jennifer Fauset Photography
P.F. Changs Lulubelle Cakes
Little America Hotel The Mindful Art Company
Utah Symphony Richard Grimes
Gourmandise Bakery Kali Chris Hair and Makeup
Utah Opera Jane C. Durham Art
Azaria Great Harvest
Cheesecake Factory Patina
Whitney Blair Florals Emily Shay Illustrations
Alicia Ady Hannah Walker Photography*event photographer
Women's ALI in the News
Every company created has a story. This provides a small glimpse of ours! How these 5 Utah sisters are helping young artists find their voices - View article
Women's ALI Mission Women's ALI is a registered 501(c)(3) non-profit organization. With the belief that education plays an important first step to lasting change, we aim to empower young artists with business and leadership skills. Our three-point mission is at the heart of all we do: educate, empower, and engage everyone who comes into contact with our organization. Learn more
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