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Style Parties of the Week: Les Printemps du MAC and the 2019 Royal Winnipeg Ballet gala

Les Printemps du MAC, Montreal

The annual Les Printemps du MAC in Montreal has become as much a celebration and sign of spring as it is a museum fundraiser. The gathering is the even livelier counterpart to the Musée d’art contemporain de Montréal’s big-time Bal du MAC (that one happens in the fall), and raises funds for the MAC Foundation, which supports acquisitions, education, exhibition development and, maybe most importantly, the promotion of contemporary Quebec art and artists. This latest, held on April 12 and dubbed Clash Kids, took its inspiration from Berlin’s underground scene. It was a music-heavy gathering, with DJs Frigid, Maddie Longlegz and M.Bootyspoon charged with handling the sound, that saw some 1,200 young arts- and culture-minded philanthropists pack into New City Gas for the 13th edition of the event. It wasn’t all just music and dancing, though: Works from established and up-and-coming artists such as Zoé Boivin, Qarim Brown, David & Jorden Doody, Josiane Lanthier, Celia Perrin Sidarous and Jerry Pigeon dotted the space and were up for grabs in support of MAC. On co-chair duties for the sold-out do this time around was lawyer Alexandra De Roy and marketing whiz Stefanie Stergiotis.

Royal Winnipeg Ballet 2019 Ball, Winnipeg

The following evening – and a little further west – Canada’s Royal Winnipeg Ballet held its annual gala, a gathering which supports the company’s mission to teach, create and perform outstanding dance. This year marks a major milestone: the company’s 80th-anniversary season. Under the eye of artistic director and CEO André Lewis and associate artistic director Tara Birtwhistle, RWB recently announced the new season lineup. It includes Evelyn Hart’s return to perform a new piece, Four Old Legs, from choreographer James Kudelka, and also in the fall, the Canadian premiere of Greg Horsman’s La Bayadère, a RWB co-production between Queensland Ballet and West Australian Ballet. The Fairmont Hotel Winnipeg was the space for the April 13 gathering, which drew patrons such as TD’s Judith Chambers, and her husband, Winnipeg deputy mayor Markus Chambers, along with company members including principal dancer Jo-Ann Sundermeier and her husband, first soloist Josh Reynolds, and dancer Stephan Azulay, currently performing in the company’s production of The Wizard of Oz (through May 5). This year’s gala, chaired by fundraising firecracker Dana Mayberry, raised an impressive $250,000.

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