We all knew by 9:30PM., on Nov. 29 that Three Phantoms in Concert: A Hurricane Matthew #GivingTuesday Benefit! had been everything that we hoped it could be. Craig Schulman, Ciaran Sheehan and Mark Jacoby joined forces with musical director Dan Riddle and five area musicians to bring a funny, entertaining, enthusiastic concert that repeatedly garnered ovations.
We saw the effectiveness of Doris Huebner, a local McDonald’s owner/operator, when she reminded the audience to not forget the work that is ahead even though the waters have receded. There was such great joy as people enjoyed giving to help their neighbors. We saw bucketfuls of donations at intermission and heard the buzz of excitement. If there was an unhappy soul in the building, I didn’t make their acquaintance.
We knew it had been a great night brought about by a partnership of the arts, the city, corporate sponsors and people who cared. Craig said he knew it would be a special night even before he took the stage. “You could feel it in the room,” he said. “People were excited. They wanted to be here. We could feel their energy.”
We knew all those things, but we didn’t know how successful we had been in raising funds for Hurricane Matthew victims. Helping people was the impetus for everything we did in pulling together in six weeks an event that probably should have taken six months to put together.
Well, we did good.
The preliminary figures indicate the donation will be more than $50,000.
That’s $50,000 that will be used to rebuild not only buildings, but to restructure lives that have been washed amid torrential waters. Looking back, it is hard to conceive of how all this came together. Craig and I originally were talking about a one-man show and we hoped to make two or three thousand dollars. That would have been worthwhile. But because of your efforts, we made more than $50,000. We demonstrated to our community how the arts can rally a community and we helped reveal the hearts of people who answer a plea for help.
My sincere hope is that you enjoyed doing something so sacrificial, something that was totally unselfish. Many of you know that I am a person of faith. There were times my faith was tested, but ultimately was strengthened as I saw what seemed to be impossible become possible because of each of you.
This show, this experience, was one of the most memorable things in my life. You made it so.
Show ‘N Tell Executive Director