Sparkling lights and a cool breeze blowing in from the rolling hills of the Texas Hill Country through the open air venue at the acclaimed One World Theater set the perfect mood for the evening. Guests enjoyed complimentary valet service by Uptown Valet followed by cocktails as the Texas sunset beyond the hills. Later, guests enjoyed a plated dinner with the anticipation of the upcoming performances by selected ACGS students and the Tango Duo.
The Austin Classical Guitar Society is a group of people that are passionate about furthering the education and inspiring the youth in our community through the art of playing the guitar. ACGS has built guitar classes in over 30 different middle and high schools and has taken the old-fashioned music classes to a higher level with professional professors and rich curricula.
Guitars Under the Stars was an event organized by the society to highlight several of the students whose lives have been changed by ACGS and to show appreciation to the volunteers and board members who make this educational outreach program so beneficial and successful.
Alice Foster, Cynthia Lew and Catherine Sonnenberg were three mothers attending the gala to support their sons, all three young men are current students of a guitar class in the ACGS program and have won many awards over the course of their education.
The young men were included in the selected group to play a beautiful set to headline Bandini-Chiacchiaretta Tango Duo. Not only does the society help to enable these young students to excel, but the parents have a heavy responsibility to help their children attend the competitions and concerts and provide the encouragement at the home life level. All three mothers were very proud of their sons and excited to be at the event supporting them.
Pepe Hernandez and Judith Agraz were at the event as volunteers and to support their son, Diago, who was one of the young men chosen to perform for the guests.
Michael Froehls, Ph.D., consultant, publisher and author of
The Gift of Job Loss, “A professional guide to Realizing the Most Rewarding Time of Your Life” and Board Member of ACGS, his girlfriend Kesha Dirkson along with My-Cherie Haley, “scarf guru” and owner of Shimmer & Bliss were at the gala to support the cause. My-Cherie explained they are all passionate about the arts, especially music and her young two year old son is already learning to play the guitar!
The charismatic Executive Director of ACGS, Matthew Hinsley, was the emcee of the evening. His passion for the students and for the organization were clear to see as Matthew provided the history of the society and the changes it has made in the lives of young students, some on the verge of dropping out of school because of drugs, depression or other reasons.
Immediately before the performance of the young students in the society, several young women and men gave short yet touching testimonials of the impact the society has made on their lives. Jeremy Osborne, Assistant Director of Education and Outreach for the society, conducted the performance of the students and the music produced by these young talents was breathtaking, especially to know these very students may have never had the opportunity to learn to play the guitar.
After much anticipation, the stars of the night, The Bandini-Chiacchiaretta Tango Duo began to play their beautiful and unique music. The two performers exuded such expressions of intensity and a true love for their music. What a delight it was to have these talented performers attend and perform at such an event that is so deserving.
The Bandini-Chiacchiaretta Duo formed in 2002 with the goal of creating Argentine music through the “charm and magic” of it’s fundamental instruments. The duo became an instant success due to their energy and beautiful music making and are invited to important and popular festivals, concerts and theatres around the world.
What an enchanting evening celebrating music and the promotion of education and fulfillment through the art of classical guitar to the youth in our community.