Supporters of the Austin Symphony and the Women's Symphony League gathered on November 21 in the resplendent West Austin home of the Rice family for an intimate performance from the legendary classic pianist Anton Nel.
The fundraiser, which raised money for the Austin Symphony's youth education programs, was limited to just a few hundred people including Joe and Theresa Long (yes, those Longs), Susan and David Douglas, Barbara Guysenir and Porter Maddox.
The night —which was dubbed "Une Notte di Incanto"— truly was a night of enchantment. While guests mingled inside, others such as gathered on the patio overlooking the expansive nature reserve (the call of some hidden creature of the wild served as a musical appetizer before Nel took the stage). By 7 pm, most guests were seated in the living room under golden chandeliers, awaiting the famed pianist.
Women's Symphony League president Tobie Funte-Flannery spoke of the importance of youth education (the Long Center, home of the Austin Symphony, hosts more than 70,000 children from Central Texas every year) and introduced Jocelyn Chambers, a high school student who has won the Texas Young Composers Competition twice. Chambers spoke of the importance of music education, saying, "Without this [contest], I don't know where I would be."
After brief remarks from Austin Symphony president Thomas Neville, Nel began his concert. Sitting captivated in the audience? Jo Creath, Amelia Bullock, Peter Tingberg and Genelle Edwards, .
In the intimate setting, under the glow of the golden chandeliers above, Nel played on, enchanting his audience and making it truly a night no one will soon forget.