November 13, 2015 — 05:30 PM
Member:25.00 + A Bra to Donate | Non-Member:$25.00 + A Bra to Donate

“Brava!” a fundraiser that will provide new bras to women at the YWCA-GCR, will be held at The Arts Center of the Capital Region, 265 River St. in Troy, from 5:30-7:30 p.m. The Arts Center is a partner in the event which will feature talented writers from around the region who will read jury-selected poems and essays or perform songs and monologues on the subject of brassieres in their lives. The pieces will touch on the subject of bras from many viewpoints and range from the poignant to the hilarious.

The event will be emceed by Susan Arbetter, well-known Capitol correspondent and radio commentator. For those who want to double up on a “night of stories”, the event serves as an unofficial pre-party for the NPR “Selected Shorts” event at 8:00 p.m. that night at the Troy Savings Bank Music Hall.

Attendees must each bring a new bra (large sizes preferred) to the event in addition to a $25 admission to cover savories, desserts and refreshments. A cash bar will also be provided. The food will be supplied by Dali Mamma, an Albany eatery that will locally source the ingredients and prepare an exciting menu with the help of YWCA-GCR residents and students in the “Women of the World” class at Russell Sage College.

“The YWCA-GCR is one of the area’s largest providers of supportive housing for both homeless single women and women with children. Women come to the YWCA-GCR in times of crisis, for affordable, safe and supportive transitional and permanent housing, economic empowerment services, basic needs such as food and clothing, etc. The YWCA-GCR is able to provide a host of services to support women to become and maintain self-sufficiency,” said Executive Director Daquetta Jones. “But one thing we haven’t been able to provide – something that is greatly needed – is a new bra. This fundamental garment is key to helping rebuild women’s confidence and strength as they re-enter the world on a fresh path.”

The idea for the event developed out of a conversation between author, editor and teacher Marion Roach Smith, who teaches memoir writing at the arts center and Malissa Pilette-McClenon, Director of Development and Marketing at the YWCA-GCR. “When we were discussing holiday needs for the residents, Malissa told me that bras are always in desperately short supply,” Roach Smith said. “This struck a powerful chord with me and we decided right there to do something about it.”

Brava! aims to collect at least 200 new bras to be distributed to women at the YWCA-GCR and others who need them. Artist Sharon Bates will be on hand at the event to create a unique display of the contributed bras.

Those who can’t attend the event but want to support the cause can drop off a new bra at Dali Mamma at 41 State St. in Albany or the YWCA of the Greater Capital Region, Inc. at 21 First St. in Troy.

Monetary contributions toward the purchase of bras can be made at!

Town Shop, a well-known lingerie retailer operating in Manhattan, will provide the bras at wholesale cost, ensuring that people’s donations go farther.

The logo and other artwork for Brava! were designed by artist and educator Paul Miyamoto and his design class at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute.

Thank you to the event’s sponsors and supporters: The Recovery Room, The Arts Center of the Capital Region, Dali Mamma, Bra & Girl, and Brazabra Corp.