0
Votes

Community in Concert

McLean Orchestra hosts musical mixer.

From left—Jeff Guzy, Guzy International Business Development, Carlos Pichardo, President Cap Ventures, Sarah Pichardo, VP Potomac Mortgage Group and Lou Muscarella, Century 21 New Millennium, represent a variety of local businesses at the i2B event.

From left—Jeff Guzy, Guzy International Business Development, Carlos Pichardo, President Cap Ventures, Sarah Pichardo, VP Potomac Mortgage Group and Lou Muscarella, Century 21 New Millennium, represent a variety of local businesses at the i2B event. Photo by Andrea Worker.

photo

From left—Jean O'Brien, president of The O'Brien Group, makes her first appearance at an i2B mixer, pictured here with the McLean Orchestra's Executive Director John Huling.

Judging by the number in attendance, the business cards exchanged, the buzz of conversation and the sounds of laughter, all accompanied by some lively music, the third “McLean Orchestra is Instrumental to Business” (i2B) mixer held at Clyde’s in Tysons Corner on Jan. 23 was a ringing success. The gatherings are part of a multi-purpose outreach program, providing a taste of what audiences can expect from their concert series and allowing the orchestra to showcase its value to business as a resource for networking—all for free.

photo

From left—McLean Orchestra Board President Aileen Pisciotta spends some time with McKeever Services guests and corporate sponsors Nate Doptis, and Lisa Miller.

The organization’s board president, Aileen Pisciotta, came up with the idea. “People sometimes perceive an orchestra as unapproachable,” said Pisciotta. “The audience is in their seats, the musicians up there on the stage. We wanted to make a closer connection. This is one way to make orchestral music accessible, playing music that is well known and giving the company and the musicians a way to be of service. My tagline for this year is ‘Community in Concert.’ I think that captures our mission.”

Pisciotta’s sentiments were reinforced by Executive Director John Huling, and Immediate Past President Wayne Sharp. “Our events have been described as like having an orchestra in your living room,” commented Sharp. “You meet friends and make friends. It’s really social. Really a sense of community.” Executive Director Huling agreed. “Of course our cake and champagne post-concert gatherings might have something to do with that friendly atmosphere,” Huling said with a laugh, “and our pre-concert dinners get things started off on the right foot.”

photo

From left—Jenny Shtipelman with EagleBank with the three-time Sponsorship Committee member Tom Hawkins with LTBD. "I'm just here to support the arts and local business," said Hawkins. "This is a unique forum. I work on the sponsorship committee to get people to show up. The system doesn't work if you don't show up."

About one hundred members of the local business community turned out for the event. Corporate sponsors like Capital Wealth Management, McKeever Services, LTBD and more generously ensured that there were plenty of hors d’oeuvres and beverages for the crowd. The evening’s entertainment included a soprano soloist and a brass quintet, and wrapped up with the awarding of a number of door prizes.

The orchestra’s next performance, “Musical Fairy Tales,” will take place on Saturday, Feb. 2, at Oakcrest School in McLean. Tickets are $40 for adults, $30 for seniors, and $15 for youth. The pre-concert dinner with a discounted menu will be held at Evo Bistro. A visit online to www.mclean-orchestra.org will provide more information about the organization, the concert series, the McLean Youth Orchestra, the i2B events and the opportunity to become a corporate sponsor.