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Wheeling Jesuit University will highlight the talents of students and alumni during Gaudiosa 2017, the university’s annual gala to support student scholarships, at 6 p.m. Saturday at the McDonough Center.
In addition to great food and fabulous entertainment, a silent auction will be held featuring student artwork and two handcrafted necklaces by Hespera Designs, whose work has been seen on HBO’s “Game of Thrones.”
“We have many gifted students and what better way to show off their talents than to have them perform in front of our guests at Gaudiosa,” said Dr. Debra Townsley, interim president at WJU. “Gaudiosa is more than just fine food and great entertainment, it is an evening with a purpose, since all monies raised supports student scholarships. Every dollar raised is an investment in our students’ futures.”
Students will provide the audience with musical and theatrical pieces — a true showcase of their talent. The WJU Jazz Ensemble will provide music during dinner, and Katy Munhall and Seth Keeney will perform “The Prayer,” followed by Samantha Herrington, who will sing “City of Stars.”
Additionally, the cast members from Wheeling Jesuit’s spring musical will bring to life a portion of “42nd Street.” The full cast members will be on hand and soloists include Becca Rodgers, Stephen Hansknecht, Nate Foster, Herrington, Hallie Richards and Bernadette Tirador.
Alumnus Christopher Bohinski, who performed and hosted last year, will do so again. Bohinski is set to sing “O What a Beautiful Morning” and “I Was Here.”
Following graduation, Bohinski headed to New York City to pursue his passion of performing. Last year, he created NYC Smile 4 Me, a web series where he asks celebrities “What makes you smile?” Bohinski’s interview series has featured Morgan Freeman, Bette Midler, Alec Baldwin and Beyonce. He also won NBC’s “Today” show national contest “Look What I Can Do” for shattering a wine glass with his voice.
New this year will be a silent auction featuring the Hespera Designs necklaces and artwork donated by current students, faculty and alumni. The auction items can be viewed on the Gaudiosa website, www.wju.edu/gaudiosa.
“We are grateful to the many employees, alumni and local residents who attend each year and have made Gaudiosa one of Wheeling’s premier events,” said Noah Mull, director of advancement and Gaudiosa coordinator.