Press Release: Hopelessly Romantic! LOVE was in the Air!

View photos from Hoelessly Romantic

February 12, 2011

Barbara Pankhurst

LOVE was in the air at Saturday’s February 12th TCFAF fundraiser to support the Arts in Turks & Caicos.  The event entitled, Hopelessly Romantic, held at Stargazer Villa, was enchanting in so many ways —

— From the champagne table at the entrance manned by tuxedo-clad Alastair Dods,

— To the “oh so romantic” love duets: The Prayer sung by Addison Stoddard and Cristina Zaccheo, With You I’m Born Again sung by Julian Garland and Candy Barrotti, and Beauty and the Beast sung by Nikko Clarke and Josie Smith plus an array of gorgeous love songs by local artists hosted by Marvin Henfield and accompanied on the piano by Wendy Hayward.

— to the mouth watering savory culinary delicacies prepared and donated by our local chefs with LOVE for the Culinary Competition:   small plates of cannelloni and croquettes from Amanyara Chef Fritz Zwahlen, shaved and flambéed conch pastries from Chef Joel Rheaume of Saltmills Diner, trays of smoked salmon pizzetta with crispy capers and spring onions, roasted beef tenderloin, purple straw potato and tomato marmalade, and shiitake and caramelized shallots on pesto rye bread from Chef Wolfgand Von Weiser of Grace Bay Resorts, barbecued chicken wings by Mango Reef Chef Florent Sourmont, smoked salmon crostini from Baci, small plate fish tacos and quesadilla’s from Somewhere on the Beach’s Luis Fabara, roast turkey, honey baked ham, sweet potato soufflé, crudités, vegetable and cheese skewers provided by Stargazer Villa Chef Annick Vernay, and homemade bread from Chef Amy Caffarel of Pine Cay’s Meridian Club.

— To the heavenly award-winning desserts prepared and donated by local chefs with LOVE and SEDUCTION:  chocolate covered strawberries from Annick Vernay, rose water panna cotta with strawberries and champagne gelee and milk chocolate mousse with pecan, peppercorn and caramel from Amy Caffarel, mille feuille coconut shortbread with crème Chantilly butterscotch sauce and shaved Valrhona chocolate from Chef Derrick Carter of Tiki Hut, and chocolate cake from Caicos Bakery’s Eric Cuvillon!

— to the rare opportunity for couples to dance under the stars to live music —

All in all the evening proved to be utterly delightful for everyone and a successful fundraiser for the Friends of the Arts to continue in its mission of providing Arts encouragement, entertainment and education for TCI.  Along with the admission ticket, over 200 guests were put on the membership list and given membership cards.

The judges for the Culinary Competition judged all the entries from 6:00 – 7:00, before the guests arrived.  The dishes were judged on Innovation, Artistry on the Plate, Taste, and Relevance to the Romantic Theme.  The five judges were: Rita Huschka, Mandy Rostance Wolf, Wendy Hayward, Cora Malcolm and Ray Durie. While they were all winning dishes, the judges tried earnestly to rank them fairly.  First place went to … drum roll please … Amy Caffarel from Pine Cay’s Meridian Club for her small seductive desserts.  Second place went to Tiki Hut’s Derrick Carter for his mille feuille shortbread with Chantilly crème and shaved Valrhona chocolate.  Third place went to Annick Vernay’s vegetable skewers on a pineapple, followed very closely by Amanyara Chef Fritz Zwahlen’s small plates of cannelloni and croquettes. The judges did love the flavors of Baci’s deceptively simple salmon crostinis and thought Saltmills Diner Chef Joel Rheaume’s conch pastries were very light and tasty, awarding them honorable mention along with Wolfgang Von Weiser of Grace Bay Resorts, Eric Cuvillon of Caicos Bakery, Mango Reef’s Florent Sourmont, and Luis Fabara of Somewhere on the Beach. The judges and the guests rated all the food simply delicious, and TCFAF was very grateful to all the participating chefs and restaurants. The judges thought the Culinary Competition a terrific idea and loved their job, as did all the 250 guests!

Coming off the very successful Nutcracker production in December, Hopelessly Romantic will help with future TCFAF productions. Slated this year are Dance Workshops with visiting teachers from the Pittsburgh Ballet March 3 – 11, a third visit from University of Nevada Las Vegas’ Dancescapes May 20 – 27, summer Acting Workshops at the Edward C. Gartland Youth Centre, and a major Christmas production, soon to be announced.

TCFAF is run exclusively by volunteers who donate their time and talent to make these productions possible.  TCFAF always seems to bring diverse people together for a common goal.  What a sight it was to see chefs from different restaurants all working together in the Stargazer kitchen, to see the local singers and musicians singing and playing together to put TCFAF guests in a romantic mood, and the dedicated group of volunteers who manned the bar, sold tickets, secured the parking and the property, set up, cleaned up, and made the evening flow!  Local artists who donated their talent to make the evening “rock” included: Gabriella Aquino, Candy Barrotti, David Been, Nikko Clarke, O’Brien Forbes, Julian Garland, Wendy Hayward, Marvin Henfield, Chris Jean, Brusnite Jean Louis, Christma Jean Louis, Barbara Johnson, Janardo LaPorte, Alan Lenathen and the A.J.’s, Cora Malcolm, Josie Smith, Addison Stoddard and Christina Zaccheo.  Some new young very promising talent surfaced this performance — 15 year old Brusnite Jean Louis, 21 year old Nikko Clarke, Cristina Zaccheo, and saxophone player Janardo La Porte. Special thanks to Wendy and Bob Hayward, Jan Durie, Marvin Henfield, Connie Gallagher, Bill Sewell, and Mike and Linda St. Louis.

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