Joyce M. Johnson

Supporters of the Cuyahoga Valley Youth Ballet lined up for a premiere performance Friday evening for the first gala event called Assemble to raise money for the organization.

Some 120 guests gathered at the Martin Center at the University of Akron for an evening of dancing, music and an auction. Wendy Greathouse was the gala chair.

Committee members included Larissa Malone, Laura Kline and Deana Boyages. Boyages and her mother, Dotti Giamette, put together the Halloween centerpieces on each table.

My daughter Emily is a very shy person but this company has brought her out of her shell, said Doug Kline.

Larissa Malone attended with husband Greg Malone.

My daughter has grown so much as a person since she started dancing so it is just great being a part of this inaugural event, she said.

Her daughter is 11-year-old Nyah Malone.

Artistic director Mia Klinger welcomed attendees who had a chance to see sneak-peek performances by young soloists from choreographer Tom Golds newest original ballet, Joplin Jamboree.

My mother always said that art is about creating not re-?creating, said Klinger.

Her mother, Nan Klinger, who died in 2003, founded the youth ballet.

Attendees Rick and Laura Bowers, Carrie Willett, Robin Caston, and Laura and Scott Carroll were looking forward to the performances and a festive evening.

Ken Waters and 15-year-old daughter Gwen Waters pursued the various auction items, which included a coveted parking space at the dance studio as well as jewelry and private ballet lessons. Rick Boyages served as the master of ceremonies.