The Thea Foundation
has always held its annual fund-raiser in Washington, D.C., but this year the foundation has brought the fun home, and Bill Clinton, too. "Into the Blue: An Evening with President Bill Clinton"
on Wednesday, May 13,
will feature an address by Clinton, who has hosted the fund-raiser since 2003; special performances by Thea Foundation Scholarship winners, and fine food and wine.
Proceeds from "Into the Blue" will benefit Thea's programs for students and teachers in all areas of art, from its scholarships for graduating seniors to its A+ arts-infused curriculum that it supports. From a press release on the evening, Thea Foundation Executive Director Paul Leopoulos said of Clinton that
“He has been a dear, lifelong friend and very supportive of what the Foundation has accomplished. However, over the years, many local patrons and friends have expressed interest in attending this event. The board and I felt that now was an ideal time to make the transition to Arkansas and allow other supporters to take part in what will be an amazing evening.”
Thea scholarship winners who'll perform include Jacob Watson
of Wynne, who performed in "Violet" on Broadway; Katie Emerson
of Jonesboro, who recently starred as Peter Pan at New Stage Theater in Jackson, Miss.; Allison Stearns
of Little Rock, a dancer who has performed with the Magic of Saipan in Saipan; Alex Zhang
of Little Rock, a slam poet now at Yale University; and Elijah Ash
of Little Rock, a singer who has recorded on the John Lennon Educational Tour Bus and is a student at Ouachita Baptist University.
The evening starts with cocktails at 6:30 p.m. and dinner at 7:30 p.m. The event is relatively small — fewer than 300 people can be accommodated — so mingling with Bill is assured. Tickets range from $1,000 to $2,000. If you believe that arts education in Arkansas is both worthy and undervalued, want to support Thea's missionary work in this area, and can afford it, you should snap up one of the remaining tickets. All tables are sold out. Email Leopoulos at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 379-9512 for ticket information.