From Germany, With Love…

What do the Boston Symphony Orchestra and Leipzig’s Gewandhaus Orchestra have in common? If you guessed artistic director Andris Nelsons, give yourself three points. If you guessed the design of their 19th-century concert halls (Leipzig’s was destroyed in World War II), give yourself a bonus.

Jacqueline Grant, Janet Wu, Elena Matlack, Maria Briseno and Ellie Cornish Chu at Leipzig Week

To commemorate the historic alliance between the two organizations, the BSO hosted Leipzig Week in Boston, which opened with a reception at the Boston Public Library and continued with a concert that served as a kickoff party for the Emerald Necklace Conservancy’s Party in the Park and included a world premiere by white-hot composer Sean Shepherd. As one attendee put it dryly, “This is the best fundraiser for a fundraiser I’ve ever been to.”

The evening attracted the likes of mother-and-daughter team Molly and Dorothea Dunne, blond beauty Cackie Austin, the stunning Ursula Liff, newlyweds Lily and Brian Flatley and Caroline and Christian Clifford, the flawless Pam Messenger, Duxbury doyenne Holly Safford, PR operative Marlo Fogelman, and so on and so forth.

Pam Messenger, Remy Stressenger, Molly Dunne and Deb Hoffman at Leipzig Week

The festivities began with dinner and drinks in the Cabot-Cahners Room—a Boston table served clam or corn chowder with brown bread, while the Liepzig table offered brisket and asparagus—and continued with a magnificent concert. The evening’s best remark: When Shepherd came onstage to take a bow, one attendee said, “He’s so young!” To which his 89-year-old companion said, “To me, fossils look young.” 

Avez-vous dish? Dirt? A spectacular social occasion? Call J.S. at 617-859-1400, ext. 303, or send an email to

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