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The Roaring 20s is the theme for Schola Cantorum's Annual Fundraising Gala

Location: California, USA
Choir type: Community Choirs
Voicing: Mixed

Schola Cantorum, celebrating its 52nd year of choral excellence, announces its annual fundraising gala slated for Saturday, April 16 from 6 to 10 PM at the idyllic Palo Alto Hills Golf and Country Club. This year’s event, themed Flappers & Finery, features musical entertainment, exquisite food, quality wines, and dancing from the 1920s.


Money raised from previous galas have accounted for one-third of the nonprofit’s annual budget, helping to fund a full season of concerts and educational outreach programs, and sponsor new works and collaborations with local artists. The event attracts community-minded music-lovers from the Bay Area who wish to preserve choral music for generations to come.


The evening’s activities, inspired by the final season of the 1920s-era Downton Abbey, offers guests the opportunity to immerse themselves in a world of elegance and extravagance. Catherine Lyman, gala chair, says, “We didn’t want to just make the event about flappers and gangsters, because the period was marked by such elegance, too, hence the ‘finery.’ How often do we get the opportunity to dress up, eat fabulous food, and dance?” Catherine Lyman is also one of two non-singing members who serves on Schola’s board of directors.


Guests will be treated to the instrumental jazz sounds of the Fil Lorenz Orchestra, with vocals by Gabrielle Cavassa. The Gatsby Girls, specializing in 20’s era dancing, will demonstrate the Charleston, and interact with attendees on the dance floor. An authentic Pierce Arrow automobile offers a backdrop for photo opportunities, and mannequins clothed in authentic 20’s gowns will complement the decor. A no-host bar set up like a speakeasy requires a password to enter, and features Al Capone’s signature drink, The Southside, a syrupy gin/mint/lime mixture. Meal choices for dinner include Braised Boneless Short Ribs, Roasted Salmon, or the vegetarian Portobello Mushroom and Couscous Napoleon.


The centerpiece of the evening is the live Fund-A-Need auction, with comedian Jeff Applebaum serving as Master of Ceremonies. Applebaum made his national television debut on CBS on the Late Late Show with Craig Ferguson, and played Joey Bishop in the long-running musical tribute The Rat Pack is Back. Donations to the Fund-A-Need are 100% tax deductible.


Throughout the evening, guests can also place bids in a silent auction. Gifts include luxury get-aways, decadent chocolates, fine wines, vintage onyx and marcasite earrings, a Downton Abbey collection including a book signed by author Julian Fellowes, 1920’s-themed movies and music, and a ride to Schola Cantorum’s May concert in the stylish red Pierce Arrow.


Dress for the black-tie event is ‘20s attire or evening wear. 


Cost to attend Flappers & Finery is $165 per person ($85 is tax deductible). Tickets may be purchased by visiting, or by phone at 650-254-1700. The deadline for ticket purchase and food selection is April 1.


The Palo Alto Hills Golf and Country Club is located at 3000 Alexis Drive in Palo Alto.