I know many of you are in the throes of planning Spring parties and charity events, and believe me, I know that it can be daunting to decide on a scheme for an event. Sometimes all it takes is a spark... which is why I thought I would show some images from last week's New York City Ballet Spring Gala which was designed by none other than Charlotte Moss in collaboration with the talented DeJuan Stroud. (Moss and her husband Barry S. Friedberg were also Chairmen on the event.)
The event kicked off the Ballet's Jerome Robbins Celebration, so naturally the evening's program included such Robbins' works as Circus Polka, The Four Seasons, and of course West Side Story Suite. It was the graphic backdrop of this last piece that inspired the design duo's scheme for the event: yellow and black. I think this was an interesting choice because this color combination is graphic and gutsy and is not usually seen in Moss' residential work. But this is where Moss and Stroud were absolutely correct- when planning an event, sometimes you've got to think big and bold. What might work in a small room at home might fall flat in a large space, especially one like Lincoln Center.
Stroud and Moss, seen above attending to pre-gala details, kept things interesting by mixing up the table settings. Some tables had yellow cloths and small arrangements of yellow roses and protea, while others were all about black- black tablecloths, big black vases, and tall branches of forsythia.
Mixing up the table settings keeps things interesting.
Of course, the table settings are not the only things that need to be considered. What to do with the general atmosphere of the space? Are there architectural details that can be incorporated into your design scheme? Are there large voids that need to be attended to? In a place like Lincoln Center, it was important to make sure guests did not feel overwhelmed by the vastness of the space. I think they managed the space issue quite successfully, both with the tall masses of yellow flowering branches and with the yellow sculptural pieces hanging from the ceiling. And how great does the yellow and black striped banner look behind the Nadelman sculpture?
Bringing a large space down to size
It's all about the details
I hope that these tips might help you in planning your next event. With a little creativity, forethought, and careful planning, not only will your party be a success, but you too will be cool as a cucumber the night of the event. Just like Charlotte Moss.
Moss making her entrance at the Gala.
(For more information on the New York City Ballet, click here.)
(Image of Moss at top courtesy of Erin Baiano/Paul Kolnik studio. Decor shots and image of Moss at bottom: Mary Hilliard.)