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For immediate release
February 23, 2015


With Keynote Speaker Vijay Gupta

Seattle, WA –  ArtsFund will host its 27th annual Celebration of the Arts luncheon on Monday, May  18, 2015, at the Westin Seattle.  The keynote address by Vijay Gupta (Founder of Street Symphony, TED Senior Fellow, and Mental Health Advocate) will focus on the Redemptive and Regenerative Power of Music.   ArtsFund will honor Ann Ramsay-Jenkins with the Lifetime Dedication to the Arts award, and renowned actor, director and Pacific Northwest resident Tom Skerritt with the Outstanding Achievement in the Arts award.

The luncheon is generously sponsored by Presenting Sponsor The Boeing Company, as well as by Supporting Sponsors Delta Air Lines, Official Airline of the Celebration of the Arts Luncheon, Delta Dental of Washington, and Safeco Insurance. 

Click here to register now for the 2015 Celebration of the Arts Luncheon. Registration is available as of April 7th, and will remain open through May 6, 2015.    For more information call 206.281.9050 or email luncheon@artsfund.org

About Vijay Gupta:

Vijay Gupta is a violinist whose interest in neurobiology and mental health issues has made him a world renowned advocate for the redemptive and regenerative power of music. A TED Senior Fellow, Gupta directs the organization Street Symphony, a free classical music concert series for the unaided mentally-ill living in homeless, incarcerated, and Veteran communities.

Gupta has performed internationally as a soloist and chamber musician since the age of eight; after joining the LA Philharmonic, he became the friend and violin instructor of Nathaniel Anthony Ayers—the homeless, mentally ill musician who was the subject of LA Times Columnist Steve Lopez’s book The Soloist, and the movie by the same title (starring Jaimie Foxx and Robert Downey Jr.). In his talks, Gupta explores music’s ability to change our brains, heal ailments, and ultimately, transform lives.

Gupta holds a master’s in music from Yale and made his solo debut, at age 11, with the Israel Philharmonic. As an undergrad, where he studied Pre-med, Gupta was part of several research projects in neuro-and neurodegenerative biology. He held Research Assistant positions at CUNY Hunter College in New York City, where he worked on spinal cord neuronal regeneration, and at the Harvard Institutes of Medicine Center for Neurologic Diseases, where he studied the biochemical pathology of Parkinson’s disease.

About Ann Ramsay-Jenkins:

Ann Ramsay-Jenkins , co-founder of the College Success Foundation, embodies the spirit of community service and philanthropy.  She has long been a champion of the arts, serving as founding chair of the Seattle Repertory Theatre Foundation, as well as the 5th Avenue Theatre board, the Theatre Communication Group National Advisory Board and the National Corporate Theater Fund, among many others. She is a founding member of ArtsFund’s Advisory Council.

About Tom Skerritt:

Actor/director Tom Skerritt has appeared in more than 40 films and 200 television episodes, including such favorites as M*A*S*H, Alien, Top Gun, Steel Magnolias, A River Runs Through It and the television series Picket Fences. He recently appeared onstage with Pacific Northwest Ballet in Don Quixote.


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ArtsFund’s Mission:  ArtsFund strengthens the community by supporting the arts through leadership, advocacy and grant making.

ArtsFund’s Vision:  A community with a dynamic and world-class arts and cultural sector where the arts are accessible to all and valued as a central and critical component to a healthy society.