LSM Newswire

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

PSO Annual Wine Challenge & Auction, March 30

Portland Symphony Orchestra's Annual Wine Dinner Benefit Features Australian Wines and an Unusual Challenge for Chefs, March 30

FREEPORT, Maine The Portland Symphony Orchestra (PSO)'s eagerly awaited annual Wine Challenge and Auction turns the traditional standard of pairing wines with a particular menu on its head instead of matching wines to the food, chefs prepare each course to complement the wine selections. Held March 30 at the Harraseeket Inn in Freeport beginning at 5:00 p.m., this year's benefit will feature Australian wines, world-class Maine chefs and live and silent auctions.

Presented by Acadia Trust, N.A. the Australian Wine Challenge features Peter Lehmann Wines from the Hess Fine Wine Estates. The festive evening begins with wine and hors d'oeuvres during the silent auction at 5:00 p.m. Following the silent auction, guests will begin a carefully-crafted multi-course meal representing Maine finest culinary talents including:
  • Jonathan Cartwright: Executive Chef, White Barn Inn, Kennebunkport
  • Steve Corry: Proprietor & Executive Chef, Five Fifty-Five, Portland
  • Mitchell Kaldrovich: Executive Chef, Inn By the Sea, Cape Elizabeth
  • Gallit Sammon: Chef de Cuisine, Harraseeket Inn, Freeport
  • Melody Wolfertz: Proprietor & Executive Chef, In Good Company, Rockland
Dinner is followed by the live auction and dessert beginning at 8:30 p.m. The live and silent auctions feature diverse and unusual items donated by Maine artists and businesses in support of the PSO. Items include exciting getaways, event tickets, fine dining, unique gifts, accommodations, services, jewelry and more. A highlight of the live auction offerings is a tour of Australian wine country.

All proceeds from the Australian Wine Challenge & Auction benefit the Portland Symphony Orchestra and its education and community outreach programs.

The Wine Challenge sells out quickly, but reservations can be made now by calling (207) 773-6128 x309 or emailing Tickets to the dinner are $150 each. Tables of ten guests may be hosted for $1,500.

For more information about the Portland Symphony Orchestra, its events and activities, visit

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Thursday, April 10, 2008

PORTopera Hosts Dinner/Dance & Auction, May 9


PORTLAND, Maine PORTopera's annual Dinner/Dance & Auction, an evening of "Romance and Revelry in Fair Verona," celebrating and supporting PORTopera's 2008 mainstage production of Gounod's ever-popular Romo et Juliette, will be held on Friday, May 9th, at the Portland Marriott.

The night begins with a sumptuous northern Italian dinner from thematic Italian Wedding Soup to Saltimbocca Chicken and Shrimp Scampi in Lemon Caper Sauce finished with a Warm Chocolate Lava Cake served with fresh whipped cream. The Bob Charest band, voted Maine's Best Band again last year, will make an encore visit to play for dinner and dancing. Some of USM's brightest and finest voice students will provide a few arias, accompanied by Aaron Robinson. Master of Ceremonies is stage and screen actor Frank E. Reilly, a San Francisco award-winning director and husband of event co-chair Sharon Reilly. Special guest Frere Laurent (Friar Lawrence) from Romo et Juliette will be portrayed by Peter Panagore, the Channel 6 Daily Devotions Pastor and best-selling Maine author of "Two Minutes for God."

Auctioneer John Locke will again try to break all previous records for bids on donated auction items and adventures; among the items this year will be walk-on roles in Romo et Juliette, a sunset cruise with Pam and Peter Plumb aboard their handsome ketch "Boheme," a gourmet dinner for ten, a trip for two to the Metropolitan Opera, a commissioned portrait by British artist Davinia Hart, cooking lessons in a gourmet chef's own kitchen, and a 12-day trip to China, featuring 5-star hotel stays in Shanghai and Beijing and six days of cruising the Yangtze River (included are the Three Gorges, Xian-home of the terra cotta warriors, the Great Wall, and, of course, the Peking Opera).

Tickets to the Dinner, Dance & Auction are $125 per person, and can be obtained by calling the PORTopera office at (207) 879-7678. Co-chairs Sharon Reilly, Larry Soule, and Bonnie Riddle welcome additional Table Hosts; the cost per table of eight is $1,000, to be paid in advance.

An extra-special offer is being extended to young lovers: one table of eight is reserved for couples age 35 and under the ticket price is $75 per person.

PORTopera's presentation of Romo et Juliette will be Thursday and Saturday July 24th and 26th at Merrill Auditorium in Portland. Tickets will be available beginning in mid-April and can be purchased online at, by phone at 207-842-0800, or in person at the 20 Myrtle Street box office in Portland, between noon and 6 p.m. Monday through Saturday.

About Romo et Juliette:
Romo et Juliette is renowned French composer Charles Gounod's operatic interpretation of the legendary Shakespearean tragedy and very closely follows Shakespeare's well-known play. On the heels of Gounod's success with his rendition of Faust (performed by PORTopera in 2002), Romo et Juliette opened on April 27, 1867 at the Thtre-Lyrique in Paris, where its immediate and remarkable acclaim demanded 100 consecutive nights of performances. It has long remained one of
France's most prized operas.

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