The event beginning at 6 p.m. benefits the CEPAC Foundation, an organization responsible for supporting ongoing education and outreach programming.
“It will just be a great night,” said Barbara Williams, honorary co-chair with her husband, Yardy.
Barbara said that CEPAC Foundation is a major supporter of ArtsBridge, the educational arm of CEPAC. Its mission is to produce quality arts education and community outreach programs designed to inspire creativity and foster the next generation of artists and art supporters. ArtsBridge programs include field trips, master classes, workshops and artists in schools.
“In three years of ArtsBridge, nearly 100,000 students have been served with performances from broad geographical range,” said the former member of the Cobb County Commission when the Cultural Affairs Department was created.
“I’ve really been interested in the arts and what arts can mean to young people,” the east Cobb resident said.
She said that ArtsBridge makes it possible for students to enjoy programs and performances such as those by the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra and Atlanta Opera.
“If people could see those students when they walk into (CEPAC) for a performance and see their faces and see their behavior — they would want to give something,” said the former president of CEPAC Foundation.
Barbara is a longtime supporter of Cobb County and the arts. Her numerous accomplishments include founding the Jubilee Fine Arts Festival now known as Jubilee Cultural Arts Alliance and formerly chairing the Cobb-Marietta Coliseum & Exhibit Hall Authority.
Williams’ love for the arts began as a child. She recalled how exciting it was for to hear the Atlanta Symphony Orchestra play in the old Symphony Hall in Atlanta. “I had wanted Cobb to have a performing arts center. When Earl Smith and others raised money for (CEPAC), he said education should be part of (CEPAC). It was a big goal of his and a big goal of mine,” she explained.
Another significant accomplishment in education through CEPAC Foundation and ArtsBridge is establishment of the Shuler Hensley Awards (designated the official Georgia High School Musical Theatre Awards in 2011). Fashioned after Broadway’s Tony Awards, the program celebrates excellence in high school musical theaters.
“Forty-one Atlanta high schools participated in the Shuler Hensley Awards last year. Three years ago when it started, only 15 schools participated,” she said.
Celebrate great works of art at CEPAC at the Overture Gala. Ticket packages start at $1,000 per couple and includes cocktail reception, dinner, VIP concert seats and the post-concert dance party. Single reservations are available. Visit www.cobbenergycentre.com or call (770) 916-2801 for more information.