The crowd of 200 Kennedy Center supporters did more than raise their voice at the Trumbull Marriott and vote for the best performer of the evening. The audience raised their hands in the air, clapped and danced the night away at the 22nd annual Kennedy Center Auction/Cabaret.
This year’s rock ‘n roll themed event featured a new format similar to American Idol and The Voice. Twelve Connecticut- and New York-based entertainers donated their time and artistic talents, while Cabaret 22 contributed $41,000 for The Kennedy Center’s children’s services as each performer represented a different children’s program.
Since its inception more than 20 years ago, the event has raised more than $1 million for children’s services, including Birth to Three, Family Enrichment, Summer Camp Program, Community Rec Program, Artworks, Sibling Programs, The Autism Project, Volunteer Support Services, Family Partnership, Lighthouse After School, Partners Program and Social Activity Groups.
Christine Mahoney of Trumbull served as chair of the show, while Elayne Cassara of Weston was the director and producer. Cassara was also recognized with the Kennedy Center Cabaret Clock for her outstanding dedication, leadership and volunteerism over the past seven years.
Jay Stollman of Newtown won the overall voice competition, while Mia Fanali of Fairfield was the winner for the female singers. Stollman is the chief executive officer of New York City-based Number 7 Records. He has been a music industry professional for more than 30 years and has a large following all over the world with The Jay Stollman Band.
Fanali has been performing with her cover band, Mia & The Riff ,for the past eight years and her original band, The Mia Fanali Band, for the past two years. She won Star Idol with Star 99.9 radio station in 2005.
Cabaret sponsors included Koskoff, Koskoff & Bieder, PC and Merit Insurance at the silver level; and Commerce Park Children’s Dentistry and Orthodontics, David Lerner Associates, Foundation for Life, Unilever and United Healthcare at the signature level.
For more information, visit thekennedycenterinc.org.