SUMMER COVID PROTOCOL UPDATES: Beginning June 1, Merit will be instituting new COVID protocols, including moving to masks recommended for all visitors. Current COVID protocols remains in effect through May 31, with the exception of a few special events. READ MORE »

Gala 2022

WEDNESDAY, MAY 18

6pm Reception | 7pm Dinner
Four Seasons Chicago

120 E. Delaware Pl., Chicago, IL 60611

Cocktail Attire • Valet Parking Available

Join Merit School of Music for an unforgettable evening benefitting equal access and excellence in music education.

After two years of celebrating virtually from locations across the globe, Merit’s Gala 2022 triumphantly returns to the Four Seasons Chicago. Honoring Lori Julian and William Blair for their contributions to the arts and featuring beautiful performances, the event is a can’t-miss for Chicago music lovers.

FEATURING

+ Special performances by Merit students

+ Stories of the unstoppable power of music

+ Inspiring words from changemakers in music education

For more information, contact Meredith Barber at [email protected].

Your health & safety are our priority! All required COVID-19 safety precautions will be in place for those who gather at the Four Seasons Hotel Chicago. Accordingly, with the safety and health of everyone in mind, we are asking that all dinner guests be fully vaccinated. Please ensure that your guests have been informed of this requirement.

MERIT SCHOOL OF MUSIC

transforms the lives of Chicago-area youth through removing barriers to high-quality music education.

Merit enables motivated students, regardless of economic circumstance, to develop their talent and to use music as a springboard for achieving their full personal potential, with nearly 70 percent of students benefitting from need-based financial aid and low-cost instrument rental.

Relive last year’s Virtual Gala 2021!

HONORING

lori julian

LORI JULIAN

Alice S. Pfaelzer Award for Distinguished Service to the Arts

william blair gala

WILLIAM BLAIR

Corporate Leadership Award

GALA CO-CHAIRS

Dora and John Aalbregtse

Judy and Scott McCue

Shelley Ochab and Chester Gougis

MERIT GALA SPONSORSHIPS

Merit School of Music deeply appreciates the individuals and organizations who celebrate the accomplishments of our honorees, Lori Julian, philanthropist and music lover, and William Blair, both supporters of the nationally-renowned programming at Merit School of Music.

In addition to the opportunities listed below, benefactors of $5,000+ will receive special acknowledgment of their support in the Gala invitation, on the Gala webpage, and in Merit’s annual report.

LEADERSHIP CIRCLE | $50,000

  • A premier table in the ballroom for 10 guests at the Gala
  • Premier recognition of your support in the Gala event materials

MAESTRO | $40,000

  • A priority table in the ballroom for 10 guests at the Gala
  • Priority recognition of your support in the Gala event materials

VIRTUOSO | $25,000

  • A prime table in the ballroom for 10 guests at the Gala
  • Prime recognition of your support in the Gala event materials

CONCERTMASTER | $10,000

  • A preferred table in the ballroom for 10 guests at the Gala
  • Preferred recognition of your support in the Gala event materials

PRESTO | $5,000

  • A reserved table in the ballroom for 10 guests at the Gala
  • Recognition of your support in the Gala event materials

ALLEGRO | $2,500

  • Four tickets to the Gala
  • Recognition of your support in the Gala event materials

ADAGIO | $1,500

  • Two tickets to the Gala

PRESENTING SPONSOR

Richard and Helen Thomas & Family

LEADERSHIP CIRCLE

Ryan and Amy DeVore
& William Blair
Howard Gottlieb and Barbara Greis
Caroline and Charlie Huebner
Lori Julian for the Julian Family Foundation
The Negaunee Foundation
Zell Family Foundation

MAESTRO

Anonymous
Carol Prins and John Hart
Earl Rusnak, Jr. and Sandra Rusnak

VIRTUOSO

Julie and Dan Baumeister
Ginny and Peter Foreman
Joe and Madeleine Glossberg
Kenneth C. Griffin
Janice L. Honigberg
ITW
Thomas and Janet Leopold
Morgan, Lewis & Bockius,
Thomas Linguanti and Olivia Tyrrell
& Julie Stapel and David Kalat
Lorna and Ellard L. Pfaelzer, Jr.
David Thomas

CONCERTMASTER

Dora and John Aalbregtse
Abbott
Michael Andrews and Ryan Ruskin
Anonymous
BMO Harris Bank
Cedille Records, Patricia Kenney and Gregory O’Leary
Clean Law PC
Joan and Robert Feitler
Judy and Verne Istock
Anne L. Kaplan
Judy and Scott McCue
NIPSCO
Shelley Ochab and Chester Gougis
Cathy and Bill Osborn
Susie Pfaelzer Sultan and John Sultan
Patrick G. and Shirley W. Ryan
Liz Stiffel
Nina G. Stillman
U.S. Bank

PRESTO

Duffie A. Adelson
Bernardi Securities
Leslie and John Burns
CAM Comm
Huan J. Chang and Robert R. Stauffer
Chicago Symphony Orchestra Association
The Gies Foundation
Anne and William Goldstein
Heidi Lukas and Charles Grode
Jenner & Block
Jennifer and Reg Montague
PACO Collective
PwC
Abiman Rajadurai and Joanna Bartold
Doris Roskin
Ann and Ray Rusnak
T. Rowe Price Private Asset Management
Penny and John Van Horn

MEDIA SPONSOR

WDCB Jazz

Give the gift of music

Your support transforms the lives of young musicians across Chicagoland.