2017-10-11 / Rockingham

Art auction, musical evening raises funds for arts center

Libby McCawley sings how she makes “the worst pies in London” to reluctant client Steve Griffiths in the recent Main Street Arts benefit. — COURTESY PHOTOLibby McCawley sings how she makes “the worst pies in London” to reluctant client Steve Griffiths in the recent Main Street Arts benefit. — COURTESY PHOTOSAXTONS RIVER — When the last “Sold!” rang in the hall, pieces of art by local artists began the journeys to their new homes with happy owners as the Main Street Arts (MSA) Lights! Camera! Auction! benefit drew to a close on Saturday, Sept. 16.

On the auction block was art by Donald Saaf, Julie Zanes, Eric Aho, Ailyn Hoey, Charlie Hunter and David Stern. Other artists who contributed were Sloane Dawson, Natalie Blake, Colleen Grout, Collin Leach, Jeanette Staley, Julia Brandis, Matthew Peake, Melanie Gregory, Rock and Hammer, Scott J. Morgan, Shane Harris and Solinglass.

Auctioneer Ned Childs, with help from Ric Cowan and Annesa Hartman, shared the stage with cast members from previous MSA musical productions and a group of actors preparing for the upcoming production of “Into the Woods,” which opens Nov. 10.

Christy Wendlandt, Morganna Ekkens, Allie McGahie and Robin Soto offered numbers from “Little Shop of Horrors,” while “Jacques Brel is Alive and Well and Living in Paris” was reprised in songs by Steve Griffiths, Julie Olsson and Ron Bos-Lun. McGahie also offered “On My Own” from “Les Miserables,” and Libby McCawley sang “The Worst Pies in London” from “Sweeney Todd.”

Other items in the live auction included a private appetizer hour at the Saxtons River Inn, the use of the Cota & Cota grill, complete with chef and 100 hot dogs and rolls; a pizza party, and two tickets for the entire 2018 season at MSA.

In addition to spirited bidding for these and the artwork, bidders also pledged funds to purchase body microphones for upcoming productions.

Hearty appetizers were offered by Harvest Moon Catering, and the Saxtons River Inn provided a cash bar.

“It was a wonderful blend of entertainment, party and fundraising,” she said. “We were so fortunate to have the generosity of the artists and businesses who bestowed on us an amazing array of auction items.” said Gina Cote, co-chair of the board.

Cote, who helped orchestrate the evening, also said she was delighted with the results.


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