Vail Valley Scenery: Supporting Bravo! Vail’s magical sounds |

Vail Valley Scenery: Supporting Bravo! Vail’s magical sounds

Carolyn Pope
Vail Valley Scenery
(Left to right) Patrick McDermott, Mike Lubin, Anne-Marie McDermott, John McDonald and Rob Wright
Carolyn Pope | Special to the Daily |

VAIL — I had a revelation, one of those “aha” moments recently while listening to Rachmaninoff at a recent Bravo! Vail concert. Time stands still at a concert Gerald R. Ford Amphitheater when one of the magnificent orchestras is in residence. The music elevates the spirit, the deep breath of nature exhales through the seats and for a brief two hours, some composer long gone comes to life in the strings, the horns and the piano. And for that moment, each person there is fully alive, in the moment, immortal. Like it will never end. Then it does.

Perhaps that is the experience that draws the audiences back each year; that moment of immortality and grace. And perhaps that is why classical music endures. If such beauty is passed on and remains, continues to be played through the centuries, then we can be secure that beauty can be carried on by us.

Bravo! Vail continues to give that gift to the valley as it has for decades. And normal, everyday Joes step up and support the organization with donations. The music supersedes our egos and our squabbles and gives us a common language in which to communicate. It’s just plain that important to keep the music playing.

The Magic of Music

Recently, Bravo! Vail held its annual gala at the Hyatt in Beaver Creek. The theme was The Magic of Music, and the mission was simple — bring in money to keep the orchestras here and to aid in the educational aspect of the organization.

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Carole Segal and Michele Resnick began planning the gala back in September. This year, around 280 people showed up to bid on several spectacular live auction packages, including the always popular New York Philharmonic conductorship. This year, the opportunity was purchased for $27,500. All in all, more than $100,000 was raised from just seven items. Folks had the opportunity to bid on VIP tickets to The Tonight Show with Jimmy Fallon, two seats to the Kennedy Center Honors, a private soiree with Paul Becker and Anne-Marie McDermott and two lifetime ski passes to Vail.

“We wanted to celebrate our season and honor the music, and we all feel how magical the music is,” said co-chair Segal. “We wanted the focus to be on the music. not on honorees or anyone in particular.”

The evening held true to that; no speeches — just great food, an auction and late-night dancing with the music from the Denver band Tunisia.

“It was wonderful seeing everyone having such a great time, dancing and laughing,” shared Michele Resnick, the other chair of the event.

That night, Bravo! Vail announced yet another world-class orchestra, The Academy of St. Martin in the Fields, would open next season before the Dallas Symphony orchestra. Founded in 1958, by the esteemed conductor Sir Neville Marriner, Joshua Bell heads the orchestra as musical director.

Visit the Bravo! Vail website at to check out what musical magic you can experience next season.

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