Local angels bring art to life

According to the American Heritage Dictionary, an angel can
be

a typically benevolent celestial being that acts as an
intermediary between heaven and earth, a guardian spirit or guiding
influence, a kind and lovable person, one who manifests
selflessness, or a financial backer of an enterprise, especially a
dramatic production.

I can’t think of a better description for those belonging to a
group here in Gilroy known as Theater Angels, particularly outgoing
president, Arline Silva.
According to the American Heritage Dictionary, an angel can be “a typically benevolent celestial being that acts as an intermediary between heaven and earth, a guardian spirit or guiding influence, a kind and lovable person, one who manifests selflessness, or a financial backer of an enterprise, especially a dramatic production.” I can’t think of a better description for those belonging to a group here in Gilroy known as Theater Angels, particularly outgoing president, Arline Silva.

Theater Angels Art League is a non-profit organization that has worked tirelessly since 1972 to bring the arts alive in Gilroy in every way possible. Last year, Theater Angels set a visionary example by partnering in a new way with a local business (Bonfante Family Gardens) in the annual Reek Run (named for “reek,” as in garlic). This year’s 5K/10K Walk/Run will be held June 25 at Bonfante Gardens.

Angel volunteers will set a scenic course that leads participants through the horticultural wonderland of uniquely manicured trees, plants and flowers. Participants receive complimentary admission to Bonfante Gardens valid on the day of the run. All proceeds go to benefit the Arts and Cultural Center coming to downtown Gilroy in 2008.

Theater Angels continue to support the Artist in Residence Suzuki Violin Program at Antonio Del Buono Elementary School. Now in its sixth year, this worthwhile program provides kindergarten to 5th graders the opportunity to take semi-private and ensemble music lessons.

“We are so proud of them. The 5-year-olds just took second prize in this year’s Memorial Day Parade, despite stiff competition from much older kids!” Silva said.

“Studies have repeatedly proven the value of music to the overall academic success of students,” Silva said as she highlighted this year’s Theater Angel accomplishments. “In January, the Rod Kelley Recorder Program began with financial help from Theater Angels in collaboration with the Rod Kelley Parent Club. We are working to provide them with the instruments they need.”

Theater Angels also provide the temporary umbrella for the newly formed South Valley Youth Orchestra, generating funds to enable public and school performances for this group as well as South Valley Ballet, which enjoyed great success last weekend with its first performance of the comic “La Fille Mal Gardee.”

Theater Angels and the Downtown Business Association will sponsor the first session of “Fifth Street Live,” a downtown summer music series June 24. Featuring a variety of styles, musicians will bring downtown to life on Fifth Street near Happy Dog Pizza.

Theater Angels will work in both Gourmet Alley and the wine spritzer booth at this year’s Garlic Festival. More than 55 volunteers will work to raise money to benefit numerous local arts programs.

An old soul lyric says, “Heaven must be missing an angel.” Heaven must be missing quite a few angels because we have them right here in Gilroy working as volunteers in the Theater Angels Art League.

To register for the Reek Run or to become an angel yourself, e-mail [email protected] or contact Arline Silva at (408) 842-5608.

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