Conductor’s Circle dinner: “Just a thank you.”

Knoxville Symphony Music Director Aram Demirjian welcomes supporters to the Conductor’s Circle dinner this past Sunday night.

As thank yous go, you could do worse than a steak dinner and beautiful music on a Sunday evening. That’s what the Knoxville Symphony Orchestra’s “Conductor’s Circle” dinner is all about.

“It is literally a thank you,” explained Rachel Ford, the Symphony’s chief executive officer. “There’s no agenda. We want our guests to enjoy a chance to talk to one another and to the musicians, to enjoy good food and some great music. That’s it!”

The Conductor’s Circle dinner was back this past weekend for the first time since it was suspended during the pandemic. The site was Fleming’s Prime Steakhouse & Wine Bar located in Turkey Creek. And you didn’t have to eat steak — other options were chicken, fish, or a vegetarian entree. Anyone who donates $5,000 or more to the KSO during a year receives an invitation.

Musicians on Sunday were Edward Pulgar, principal second violin; Kathryn Gawne, principal viola; Sean Claire, violin; and Andy Bryenton, principal cello. The music ranged from classical to popular. It was fun!

From left, Cathy Hill, Rick Fox, Carolyn Leahy and Ralph Cianelli during the cocktail hour. Fox is chair of the KSO’s board of directors.

From left, Jon Agazzi, Sheena McCall, Drs. Ayaz and Quyn Rahman.

Judith Hector, center, with Zane and Theresa Scarlett.

Music Director Aram Demirjian, center, with Jay and Marga McBride, left, and Joe and Ruth Fielden.

Violinist Sean Claire chats with Sandra Emond.

The KSO’s CEO, Rachel Ford, right, and Judith Foltz.

Bill and Atie Rotmeyer.

From left, Rick Stone, Trianne Newbrey, Angela Howard, and Doug Leahy. Trianne is director of communications for the Symphony.

From left, Dan and Mary Holbrook with Charlie and Lynne Harr.

From left, Elizabeth Offringa, Theresa Stone, and Jane Venable.

Charmaine Mamantov and Michael Foltz.

Charles Daily and Francie Elrod.

From left, Alan Carmichael, John Winemiller, cellist Andy Bryenton, and R.J. Hinde.

The group loved mingling. It’s a good thing we had a private room, because things got a little loud!

Dinner quieted us down a bit! Some of the highlights, clockwise from left, barbecue salmon fillet, 8 oz. petite filet mignon, Fleming’s potatoes, and creamed spinach.

KSO Development Director Josh Thornton with his colleague, Trianne Newbrey. He was enjoying the Caesar salad we had as a starter.

Showstopper was the chocolate gooey butter cake for dessert. (My husband, Alan, thought he had died and gone to heaven!)

From left, John Jarnigan, Vicki Kinser, and Jon Agazzi after dinner.

Conductor Demirjian introduced the musicians and made very brief remarks of gratitude.

Joe Fielden, left, listens as we all remember why we are here. Musicans, from left, Sean Claire, Edward Pulgar, Kathryn Gawne, and Andy Bryenton.

It was so moving to hear these talented musicians in such an intimate setting.

Andy Bryenton introduced the pieces.

Angela Howard enjoying the sounds.

Marga McBride capturing the sounds!

It was a fantastic thank you.




Filed under: Events, Food, Media. Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply