Seven employee bands competed in Work for Art’s first annual Battle of the Bands, which drew more than 400 music fans to the Crystal Ballroom on Thursday, May 12. Celebrity judges Christopher Brown, Steve Pringle and Rindy Ross awarded the top prize – best company band – to Pencil Skirt Paula and The Straight Edge Rulers, from ZGF Architects. The Best Showmanship prize went to Kaiser Permanente’s 1980s cover band, Members Only.
The Audience Favorite award, as determined by the band that raised the most money from the audience, went to The Standard’s Smoke Before Fire. In all more than $75,000 was raised through event sponsorships, ticket sales, a silent auction, a raffle and other cash donations.
All event proceeds will help Work for Art draw closer to its fundraising goal of $1 million by June 30. Work for Art is a program of the Regional Arts & Culture Council that raises money and awareness for local arts and culture organizations, primarily through workplace giving. RACC distributes all campaign proceeds to more than 100 local nonprofit organizations – including Oregon Children’s Theatre, Ethos Music Center, Portland Opera and the Children’s Healing Art Project.
Battle of the Bands was the first-ever public fundraising event for Work for Art, which is now in its tenth year. The event was emceed by Joe Vithayathil of KPTV Fox 12 Oregon, and by singer-songwriter Merideth Kaye Clarke. The Brothers Jam, led by BodyVox artistic director Jamey Hampton, opened the show, and one of the Timbers Army bands, Greenhorn, played the final set.
Other competing bands included The Legal Limit (Tonkon Torp), The Red Keys (KeyBank), Larry and the Lightbulbs (PGE), and Dystopia (Burgerville). Companies that are interested in competing in next year’s Battle should contact Jeff Hawthorne, Director of Community Engagement for the Regional Arts & Culture Council, at email@example.com, 503-823-5258.
To make a donation that will help Work for Art reach its million-dollar goal, visit workforart.org.