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  • Carnegie Hall Presents
  • ZH Zankel Hall
  • SA/PS Stern Auditorium / Perelman Stage
  • REW Resnick Education Wing
  • WRH Weill Recital Hall

Our Golden Ticket Winner Shares His Platinum Experience

Earlier this season, we held a Golden Ticket Contest in which we offered one winner 50 tickets to use as they wished. Our winner, Robert Shmalo, chose to bring his friends to our February 16 Dianne Reeves and Friends concert, and created an event his guests would never forget by planning additional events in our Rohatyn Room and an after-party at The Russian Tea Room.

It has been just more than a week and I am still trying to digest Carnegie Hall’s Golden Ticket experience. Little did I know that writing a short poem would leave me with one of the most memorable and quintessential New York nights I have ever experienced. 

After I found out that I had won, the staff at Carnegie Hall led me through the planning process of selecting a suitable performance that all of my friends would enjoy. After much deliberation, we settled upon Dianne Reeves and Friends. 

My planning continued ... In my poem, I had written that I would meet my friends for a pre-drink at The Russian Tea Room and, with that in mind, I planned a really colorful after-party in the Bear Lounge of the famed establishment. The big day came and they did not disappoint. 

We all met for a glass of bubbly in the Rohatyn Room at Carnegie Hall before the show and then, as the bells chimed, we found our seats. Dianne Reeves’s soulful and sparkling voice filled every inch of the Hall. Esperanza Spalding and Lalah Hathaway were equally superb. We loved it. As I sat in Box 28 of the Second Tier, I had a surreal experience as I looked throughout the historic theater and saw so many of my friends, each wearing the most fantastic of outfits.  

I owe a huge thank you to everyone at Carnegie Hall for making all of this a reality. With their impeccable guidance, they made my Golden Ticket experience into one that can only be described as Platinum.