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Salk Institute Synthesizes Science, Symphony and Singer Idina Menzel

The Salk Institute for Biological Studies in La Jolla featured the San Diego Symphony and singer Idina Menzel Saturday night.

The 16th Annual Symphony at Salk was held last night at the Salk Institute’s courtyard in La Jolla.

Among the hundreds there were Salk Institute President William Brody, Salk Chief Operating Officer Marsha Chandler and Bill Chandler, and Salk supporters including David C. Copley, Nina and Bob Doede, Christine Forester, and Joan and Irwin Jacobs, chair of the board of trustees at Salk Institute.

Also there were Judith Harris and Dr. Robert Singer, Sheri and Stuart Jamieson, Leanne MacDougal, Peggy and Peter Preuss, Claire Reiss, Faye Russell, Andrew Shelton, Sally and John Thornton, and Faye Wilson.

The evening started perfectly with balmy weather as cocktail attired guests arrived for the reception featuring chilled white wines and champagne, and Jeffrey Strauss of Pamplemousse Grille’s very popular Kobe beef sliders.

The evening continued with a fancy box supper by Chef Strauss. The dinner featured a housin marinated flat iron steak and miso sea bass accompanied by a green tea noodle salad with red bell pepper strips, and Chinese long beans.

After dinner, the sun set and the San Diego Symphony took the stage once again led by special guest conductor Thomas Wilkins. Wilkins, a favorite as the Principal Guest Conductor at the Hollywood Bowl, is not only eloquent with his conductor’s baton, but he was eloquent with praise for the Salk and the San Diego Symphony.

Wilkins was joined on stage by Broadway singer Idina Menzel who is noted for her starring role as the green faced witch in Wicked, the musical version of The Wizard of Oz, and for her guest role on the television hit series Glee.

Highlights included numbers from Wicked as well as Menzel’s version of Lady Gaga’s Poker Face.

It was another successful Symphony at Salk for a great cause as noted by Brody.

"Proceeds from Symphony at Salk benefit our research efforts, providing our scientists with the operating flexibility to explore some of their most creative ideas in the lab," he said.

Since 1960 the Salk Institute for Biological Studies has been a national leader for disease research primarily in AIDS, Alzheimer’s disease, autism, cancer, diabetes, gene therapy, plant biology and vision.

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Margo Schwab August 29, 2011 at 09:12 PM
Idina Menzel's voice was welcomed with 'glee'.... the Salk Institute gala featuring Menzel and the San Diego Symphony was flawless
kimasdad August 30, 2011 at 06:59 PM
The evening's musical soiree was top notch. Idina, accompanied by the San Diego Symphony, was superb, and her wonderful sense of humor caught me off guard! Salk, keep up the good work, especially on the conversion of ordinary skin cells into stem cells.

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