World class violinist plays to benefit local Clubs

5 mins read

Frank Almond and his 1715 Lipinski Stradivarius will make beautiful music together at a fundraiser benefitting the Boys & Girls Clubs of Northern Beaufort County. In January, Beaufort will welcome a small, dark and handsome celebrity into its midst and that celebrity’s name is “Lipinski.” The “Lipinski” Stradivarius, made in 1715, will journey to the Lowcountry with world class violinist Frank Almond for Notes: An Evening of Musical Storytelling & Casual Conversation, the first annual gala event to benefit the Boys & Girls Clubs of Northern Beaufort County.

Not quite a concert but much more than a party, Notes will be a night to remember, starting with its venue, the newly restored Tabby Place on Port Republic Street in historic downtown Beaufort. Though the Stradivarius is fancy, dress will be casual and the setting informal. “The new Tabby Place is the largest venue north of the Broad,” says event planner Jodie Miller of Plum Productions. “We’re going to transform it…give it a jazz clubby feel. Without the jazz.” Southern Graces will serve up wonderful food and the cocktails will flow.

And Frank Almond, renowned recording artist and concertmaster of the Milwaukee Symphony, will play his famous violin. The “Lipinski” Stradivarius, with its long and storied history, made international news in 2014 when it was stolen from Frank during an armed robbery, only to be recovered by law enforcement nine days later. The heist and recovery of this rare instrument– insured for $6 million–was the subject of a BBC documentary, a long piece in Vanity Fair, and myriad other media features. Almond will share this story and other anecdotes during an animated performance, accompanied by the equally chatty Michael Braz on a Steinway piano. Make no mistake: Notes won’t be a stuffy concert in a hushed auditorium. Notes will be a great party with spectacular music and conversation. There’s also an art auction in the works, featuring donated pieces by several of Beaufort’s finest artists offering their interpretations of the “Lipinski” Stradivarius in a variety of media. Student art will be on display as well.

“It’s going to be a fabulous evening,” says Jeff Evans, publisher of Lowcountry Weekly, who’s chairing the event with his wife Margaret, along with honorary chairs Brantley and Alice Harvey.

“Everybody knows Brantley as the former Lieutenant Governor of South Carolina and an all around great guy,” says Margaret Evans. “What some people don’t know is that he played violin with the Beaufort Symphony Orchestra for years. So this event is near and dear to his heart. Jeff and I are thrilled to be serving with the Harveys.”

Mike Gonzalez, president of the Boys & Girls Clubs of Northern Beaufort County, is a friend of Almond’s and says Beaufort is in for a real treat. “We are so excited to have an artist of Frank’s stature coming to play at our Notes event. Both he and the ‘Lipinski’ are artistic treasures.”

According to Gonzalez, Almond is giving his time and talent for Notes because he believes in the mission of the Boys & Girls Clubs. “Our organizations are focused on helping our kids be better students, healthier people, and contributing citizens,” says Gonzalez. “This event is the culmination of hard work by a committed group of community volunteers determined to extend our services to more youth in the area.”

Notes: An Evening of Musical Storytelling and Casual Conversation is Saturday, January 9th at 6 p.m. at Tabby Place in downtown Beaufort. Sponsorships and tables are available, and seating is limited. For sponsorship or ticket information contact notes@plum-productions.com.

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