This past Saturday night was breathtaking! There’s nothing I enjoy more than a night out with my hubby, Roger, listening to beautiful music. And music just doesn’t get any better than what we heard at the Elegance & Fire Gala.
This special Kitchener-Waterloo Symphony fundraising event, which included a dinner, concert and after party, is something Roger and I have been looking forward to for quite some time now, and an event that we felt was very worthy of our support.
The main crowd-puller of the evening took place at the Center in the Square, a concert featuring widely known violinist James Ehnes along with the symphony. Although Ehnes has played all over the world – Australia, New Zealand, Malaysia, Europe, the UK, South America and across Canada and the US – on this special evening, this Grammy-award winning man made himself at home in K-W and made all of us feel like he was saving the best for us.
We heard some pieces by Verdi, Vivaldi and Kreisler, and it was all amazing. But, the final piece, the one that wasn’t even listed on the program, is the one I’ll remember forever. So emotionally moving. Ron Craigen, Chair of the KWS Board of Directors said something to me that I can identify with, something to this effect. Sometimes silence is the best way to respond; we don’t want to ruin the moment with clapping. After hearing the final piece, I just wanted to sit there and breathe a little happy “Ahhh”. But, I clapped out of obligation because I didn’t want my neighbours to think I wasn’t appreciative. I have never seen or heard anything like this violinist in my life. It was like a foretaste of Heaven! I think next time I hear James Ehnes, should I be fortunate enough to hear him again, I’ll just breathe in the moment and not worry about my neighbours.
A perfect night had a perfect ending with a very festive after party at the Conrad Centre for the Performing Arts. Roger and I escorted about 200 lovely folks there by bus. There was electricity in the air during that short ride, and no one had to say a word to communicate their true feelings about this concert, for their faces said it all. I felt like I was looking at a bunch of happy feasters after a home-cooked Thanksgiving dinner. I just love it when I am surrounded by people who don’t necessarily know each other, but have a common bond based on one simple circumstance – this night we all heard a violin sing.
And I was overjoyed to see a few of these refined, dignified people who took in an evening of classical music sweat to the oldies on the dance floor at the after party. Who would have known that Play that Funky Music White Boy would be on the playlist? Just another reason to love the diversity of our great city.
Here is the direction I believe the KWS is going. Based on the raving success of this past Saturday's event, the kickoff to the new season, they’re going up from here!
This event, the first of the season, was a raving success. It was exciting to see so many people out at the concert. I believe this level of support is a sure sign of good leadership. Since Edwin Outwater joined the symphony as their Music Director, the growth of the audience has been increasing each year. We were all happy to hear the announcement that Mr. Outwater has decided to extend his contract to 2015. He has been well received in this community and seems to really appreciate the talent he has to work with. It is refreshing to see a professional of this calibre with so many years of conducting experience have such a down-to-earth manner of communicating with the audience. It really adds so much warmth to the whole experience when you sense that the man with the baton isn’t just doing his job, but living out his passion.
Truly, the Kitchener Waterloo Symphony is one of K-W’s greatest assets. If you haven’t already purchased your tickets for this season, please do so. You won’t be disappointed.
Roger donated one of these unique "Live Edge" Black Walnut serving trays to the silent auction. We hope the winner enjoys it, and that the proceeds helped the KWS to meet their fundraising goals. For more information on Roger's business and how you can purhcase one of these serving trays, visit: