Inside The School of American Ballet’s Chic Annual Ball

by Freya Drohan

Over 400 guests hotfooted it to the David H. Koch Theater on Monday evening for the annual School of American Ballet (SAB) Ball. The black-tie event, a favorite amongst New York culture lovers and patrons of the arts, once again raised funds for scholarships and systems to support the organization’s young dancers—the talents of whom were on display during the evening’s pièce d’occasion. 

The evening, which was graciously sponsored by Graff (spot the diamonds amongst the glittering crowd!) and First Republic Bank, began with a cocktail hour and a chance to mingle, before guests sat for a seated dinner on The Promenade. The emcee was hilarioius Tony Award winning actress Laura Benanti, who also spoke emotionally about how much ballet meant to her young daughter during the pandemic isolation months.

For the first time ever, a non-SAB alum was spotlighted to choreograph the pièce d’occasion, and that honor went to Guam-native Caili Quan who moved to NYC at 16 to pursue her dream of being a dancer. Of the chance to choreograph the work, particularly when the event’s focus is on increasing access for emerging talent, she told the Daily, “Coming from Guam, I understand the importance of opportunity. It really just takes that one door to open for a young dancer’s dreams to come true. SAB dedicating resources to need-based scholarships helps provide that big opportunity for young artists.”

(Erin Baiano)

The SAB Ball was helmed by event chair Alyssa Tablada, dinner chair Catherine Doyle Callaway, vice chairs Amanda Brotman-Schetritt, Joshua Greene, Morgan P. Richardson, Stephanie Sharp, and Jessie Ding, and lead benefactors Liz Armstrong and Zita Ezepeleta.

Among those in the crowd were SAB and NYCB artistic director Jonathan Stafford, SAB executive director Carrie W. Hinrichs, New York City Ballet principal dancers Ashley Bouder, Chun Wai Chan, Jovani Furlan, and Mira Nadon, as well as Jill Kargman, Kailand Morris, Igee Okafor, Amy Fine Collins, Sai De Silva, Erin Lichy, Sophie Sumner, Stephanie Gottlieb, and Graff president and CEO Marc Hruschka.

Peek inside the evening, below:

Images: Getty/Erin Baiano

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