Symphony Splendor

Austin Symphony supporters gather for a once-in-a-lifetime performance from Anton Nel

Austin Symphony supporters gather for once-in-a-lifetime performance

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Gina Schroder, Kim Malony, Pat Rowe Photo by Jon Shapley
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Jo Creath, Amelia Bullock, Peter Tingberg, Genelle Edwards Photo by Jon Shapley
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Ray Chatelain, Kim Chatelain Photo by Jon Shapley
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Jim Whorton, Cindy Wilson, Scott Wilson Photo by Jon Shapley
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Susan Salch, Andrew Flynn Photo by Jon Shapley
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Jill Powell, Betsy Zullo Photo by Jon Shapley
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Katie Hagen, Steve Hagen, Donna Rice Photo by Jon Shapley
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Barbara Guysenir, Porter Maddox, Betsy Zullo, Joe Zullo Photo by Jon Shapley
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Lea Fargeon, Alexander Henley, Paul Leeke, Karen Leeke Photo by Jon Shapley
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Andrew Rice, Eddie Safady Photo by Jon Shapley
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Susan Douglas, David Douglas Photo by Jon Shapley
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Karen Collins, Patty Chandler, Tobie Funte-Flannery Photo by Jon Shapley
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Lisa Mahendru, Suzanna Pierson Photo by Jon Shapley
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Tobie Funte-Flannery introduces the speakers. Photo by Jon Shapley
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David Douglas listens as Anton Nel performs. Photo by Jon Shapley
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Anton Nel performing Photo by Jon Shapley
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Joe Long thanks Anton Nel for his performance and kindly asks for an encore. Photo by Jon Shapley
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Guests enjoy Anton Nel's performance. Photo by Jon Shapley
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Jocelyn Chambers, Tobie Funte Flannery, Joe Long, Theresa Long, Anton Nel, Andrew Rice Photo by Jon Shapley
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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 Susan Salch, Andrew Flynn, Gina Schroder, Kim Malony and Pat Rowe, Lea Fargeon, Alexander Henley, Karen and Paul Leeke 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, Ray and Kim Chatelain, Jim Whorton and Cindy and Scott Wilson.

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.