There’s More to Naming a Company After Yourself Than Ego

By Paul Sullivan   January 5, 2018

If on New Year’s Eve you went to a party featuring Alex Donner’s society band, you had only a one-in-four chance of seeing Mr. Donner sing out the old and croon in the new.
As chief executive of Alex Donner Entertainment, Mr. Donner had four orchestras emblazoned with his name playing that night: two at events in Manhattan, one in Palm Beach, Fla., and one in Paris. But Mr. Donner appeared only in Paris, at an event sponsored by a prominent hedge fund manager.
“There are times people come up to me and say, ‘Alex, you and the band were great two weeks ago,’” Mr. Donner said. “The truth is, I wasn’t there.”

Read the full article here.
PDF version available here.


Quest Logo

The Great American Songbook

By Alex Donner   December 2019

Singing those Great American Songbook tunes with a band spoke to me, and I’ve been privileged to sing this repertoire professionally for more than 30 years.

So what is this Great American Songbook? It consists of about 500 songs that were melodically simple and harmonically much more complex than former popular songs, written by a group of composers who worked in teams from about 1920 to 1960. Rodgers and Hammerstein, Kern and Hammerstein, Rodgers and Hart, Dietz and Schwartz, and Johnny Burke and Jimmy van Heusen had their names prominently displayed on marquees.
Read the full PDF version of the article here.



Miss D’s Luna Si Episode 56 – Alex Donner

May 8, 2019

My guest in today’s show razzles, dazzles, and makes everyone move their feet. He is both a singer and band leader and has performed for presidents, royalty, and celebrities alike. He’s a former lawyer turned world class musician. Listen as we walk through his incredibly interesting history and share some of his music in today’s show.

Listen to entire podcast here:

Full Tilt Palm Beach

by Christine Schott

April 8, 2022

Whereas Findlay Galleries hosted A Fête on the Terrace to benefit The Social Register Foundation. The dinner was chaired by The Hon. Wilbur L. Ross and Mrs. Hilary Geary Ross. Benefactors included James R. Borynack and Adolfo Zaralegui, Alex Donner, Christine Schott and George Ledes, The Hon. Wilbur Ross and Hilary Geary Ross, and Lise Honore and Christopher Wolf.

Read the full article here.


Palm Beach & Our Triathlon of Leisure

by Brian D. White

March 2022

That night was the white tie gala featuring THE LEGENDARY SOCIETY BAND LEADER – Alex Donner & His Orchestra at a private club playing not only the classic society tunes we all adore but also a range of the most current popular music – which kept the dance floor packed all night!!!

Read the full article here.


Philanthropist Jean Shafiroff And Others At The Dogs On The Dunes Clambake Hosted By American Humane

July 27, 2021

Southamptonites came out to the Dunes with their dogs and enjoyed a stunning moonrise while noshing on clams, lobster and s’mores roasted over a beach bonfire. Guests also kicked off their flip-flops and got down to the musical entertainment provided by the Alex Donner Steel Drum Band.

Read the full article here.


International Society honors founder

by Shannon Donnelly December 22, 2019

The event took place Dec. 10 at the Beach Club and marked the 42nd annual dinner dance as well as the 100th birthday of society founder/president Herme deWyman Miro, who also served as chairwoman for the event.After cocktails, guests moved to the Ocean Room — transformed by Bruce Sutka into a palette of silvers and golds — for dinner, a ballet interlude from students at the Dreyfoos School of Dance, a performance from classically trained pop/opera tenor and Flamenco guitarist Ghaleb, dancing to the music of Alex Donner and the sweet surprise announcement of the engagement of Mara Schainuck and Arthur Benjamin.

Read the full article here.


Please, Mr. Postman

by Shannon Donnelly   December 9, 2019

Heard: That orchestra leader Alex Donner’s holidays are taking off faster than a jet-propelled reindeer.

“We had a very busy week, doing two debutante balls , one at the Pierre Hotel in and one in DC at the Mayflower, plus the wedding reception of my good friends Sharon Bush and Bob Murray,” he writes. “The rest of December will be busy, too, with two trips to Chicago, one to Palm Beach, one to Boston, plus a number of Christmas parties in New York.”

Donner will be back and forth between PB and NYC so often this season that he’s decided to rent a place for the winter.

So, that guy you see at Publix who looks just like Alex Donner? Probably him.

Read the full article here.


Joel Osteen officiates Sharon Bush and Robert Murray’s nuptials

by Ian Mohr December 2, 2019

Televangelist Joel Osteen officiated the wedding of Sharon Bush and financier Robert Murray Saturday in Manhattan.

Alex Donner’s orchestra played, and guests left with bags form Lauren’s charity FEED.

Read the full article here.


Alex Donner: Strike Up the Band

by Judy Carmack Bross November 11, 2018

Segueing with savoir faire from In the Mood to Uptown Funk with a uptick of his baton, Alex Donner rules the society orchestra circuit from Annabel’s in London to the Hall of Mirrors in Versailles to Palm Beach under the stars, and to a recent visit by HRH The Prince Edward held in Chicago’s most elegant ballroom.

When the Krehbiel family opened Ballyfin, their five star hotel in Ireland, Alex was key to this Chicago family’s celebration, and when leaders of our city’s most elegant inner sanctum holiday event planned their upcoming evening, Alex Donner was the orchestra the secret committee chose.

He plays Chicago four or five times a year for weddings, private parties and events planned by organizations such as the Lyric Opera and the Field Museum.

Read the full article here.


Hit Parade

The Origins of the Great American Songbook

by Alex Donner Monday, December 11, 2017

The first time I ever sang with a band was September 1972 in the dining hall at Princeton. The piano player gave me a four-bar intro, and I started in, “Without a song, the day would never end…without a song, the road would never bend,” when I felt a piece of cheese whirl past my ear. It seemed the crowd wanted to hear the Stones rather than Sinatra. I heard some clapping, the piano player gave me a wink, and I soldiered on to the end: “When things go wrong, a man ain’t got a friend…without a song.” I followed with Cole Porter’s “Night and Day,” this time with no cheese. At the end of the performance somebody booked our group for a party.
Something about singing the Great American Songbook that night with a band spoke to me, and I have been privileged to sing this repertoire professionally for more than forty years. So what is this Great American Songbook and what makes it so special?

Read the full article here.


Alex Donner: Top Notch Performer

by Bennett Marcus     April 3, 2018

Now, in 2018, after performing for 29 years, Donner is a hotter commodity than ever. He has six bands and scores of backup singers under his baton and can perform everything from rock and R&B to Jazz and top 40 covers. Donner has also recorded numerous CDs of both big band and swing music; his current albums are entitled “White Tie,” “Black Tie Blues,” and “Alex Donner at the Tiffany Ball.”

Read the full article here.


January 3, 2019

Band leader Alex Donner playing Claridge’s in London…

See the full article here.


French Heritage Society’s Sophisticated Halloween Ball Beautifies the Night
by ElizaBeth Taylor November 2, 2018

Guests lit up the dance floor to the divine tunes of Alex Donner Orchestra before Nicholas Dawes, Vice President, Heritage Auctions, the country’s leading expert on René Lalique, began the live auction.

See the full article here.


Pet Hero Awards Honor the Champions of Animal Welfare

News provided by Pet Philanthropy Circle Oct 22, 2018, 20:45 ET

The Irwin Family; Terri, Bindi and Robert Irwin, Inaugural Humanitarian Family of the Year, championed the cause of protecting wildlife in their acceptance speech. Fido Fixers, the South Fork Natural History Museum and Nature Center and Storm, the Golden Retriever that rescued a drowning fawn from Long Island Sound and whose inspiring video reached over 19 million people, were present to accept their awards.

A special thanks to Alex Donner Orchestra, London Jewelers, SiriusXM, the Park Lane Hotel, Designs by Mark Masone, and FiOS 1 News. The EVENT WILL BE BROADCAST ON FiOS1 NEWS, CHANNEL 501, ON NOVEMBER 8TH AT 9:00 PM.

See the full article here.


HRH Prince Edward Recruits Chicago

BY JUDY CARMACK BROSS           October 7, 2018

As HRH The Prince Edward, Earl of Wessex arrived at one of Chicago’s most elegant ballrooms, he was welcomed by 300 marvelously attired guests, with “Rule, Britannia”—chosen by society bandleader Alex Donner—playing in the background.

Following an exciting live auction offering truffle hunting in Tuscany and a visit to Machu Picchu among the donated prizes benefitting the Award, Alex Donner, former music director at New York’s Club El Morocco and Palm Beach’s Colony Hotel, and headliner at the Café Carlyle, knew just the right songs to lead people to the dance floor.

See the full article here.



September 22, 2018

Prince Edward thanking society band leader Alex Donner for his rendition of “Rule, Britannia” at the Duke of Edinburgh’s International Award ceremony in Chicago . . .

See the full article here.


James Denton And Beth Stern Host 2018 American Humane Hero Dog Awards

October 4, 2018

Before the show, the audience was treated to the artistry of The Alex Donner Band, the Nunziata brothers, and a special appearance by Hallmark Channel’s Goodwill Ambassador Happy the Dog.

See the full article here.

NY Post Logo

Quick hits…quick hits

Richard Johnson September 25, 2018

Policy wonks at a fund-raiser for US Senate candidate Chele Farley were treated to an impromptu duet by society bandleader Alex Donner and operatic singer Rose Jang. Inspired by the amplifying acoustics of the circular foyer at Jean Shafiroff’s Park Avenue apartment, the duo sang “Somewhere Over the Rainbow” a cappella…
See the full article here.


Pet Philanthropy Circle Announces the 2018 ‘Pet Hero Award Winners’

WATER MILL, N.Y. – July 31, 2018 – (

This optional black-tie event will be Co-hosted by David Frei, NBC Commentator and former Westminster Dog Show Host and Jewel Morris, Founder of the Pet Philanthropy Circle. This year’s Chair, Susan Cushing and Pet Philanthropy Circle’s President, Stephanie Mattera, invite all animal advocates to join us at this year’s celebration. Alex Donner Orchestra will provide musical entertainment again this year.

See the full article here.


Photography by AnnieWatt.comNYC Mission Society’s Annual Champions for Children Gala Honoring
Cathy Hughes & Mannie JacksonSee photo here.See the full article here.


Summer Colony
July 5, 2018Saturday night, I headed over to the lovely home of Jean and Martin Shafiroff for the kickoff party for the Stony Brook Southampton Hospital Summer Party. This marks the party’s 60th anniversary. I was delighted to see Alex Donner there with a member of his band playing music for the guests. What a perfect night, as we all gathered on the back patio overlooking the lake to celebrate the hospital.See the full article here.


Jean & Martin Shafiroff Kick Off Stony Brook Southampton Hospital’s 60th Summer Party

South O’the Highway Team July 2, 2018

The assembled crowd mingled and enjoyed canapés while enjoying music performed by Alex Donner.

See the full article here.


Lois Pope shares words of wisdom at Palm Beach birthday party

By Shannon Donnelly – Daily News Society Editor
Sunday, June 17, 2018 Palm Beacher

Robin Ganzert of American Humane hosted a milestone birthday party for the group’s most dedicated supporter at Cafe L’Europe recently.

It was Lois Pope’s 85th birthday, but she was the one who brought the gift, disclosing to the 100 or so guests her secrets to living a great life:
1. “Never tweet anything at 3 a.m. It’s means you are drunk, not very bright or in desperate need of Ambien.”
2. “Exercise at least 30 minutes every day. Running is good, but walking is better, especially if it’s walking through Nieman Marcus.”
3. “Never buy a Rolex or borrow money from a man named Lefty.” (Spoken like a true South Philadelphia girl.)
The night also included cocktails, hors d’oeuvres, a dinner and, of course, live music with members of the Alex Donner Orchestra.

Read the full article here.


Join America’s Most Courageous Canines at the American Humane Hero Dog Awards Gala Luncheon

In addition to the four-footed stars, the event will feature human ones, as well, with appearances by Hero Dog Awards co-host Beth Stern and Daisy Fuentes, and performances by Grammy Award-winning singer, songwriter and producer Richard Marx, and the renowned Alex Donner Orchestra.

“For thousands of years, people have had a special relationship with dogs, and the American Humane Hero Dog Awards are our way of honoring the best of our best friends,” said Dr. Robin Ganzert, president and CEO of American Humane. “The ‘Hero Dogs Award Gala Luncheon’ is an inspiring afternoon when we offer our thanks to so many of our greatest heroes – from service dogs who improve our lives to military hero dogs who fight alongside our troops and defend our freedom. We are grateful to all of them, to Lois Pope for her work in supporting these heroes, and all of our generous sponsors and National Ambassadors for helping us recognize their remarkable accomplishments.”

Read the full article here.

NY Daily News logo

Confidential     with Brian Niemetz


Bandleader Alex Donner played tribute to Vic Damone at the Lighthouse Gala in Palm Beach over the weekend. Donner, who has performed for President Trump and both President Bushes, struck up the band for Damone hits including “I Have But One Heart” and “On the Street Where You Live” for a crowd that included philanthropist Jean Shafiroff and Arlene Dahl, whose grandson is actor A.J. Lamas. Damone died Feb. 11 at 89.

Read the full article here.


Puttin’ on the Ritz

His company, Alex Donner Productions, books combos ranging from classical duos and trios to funk and R&B bands, but it specializes in the old-style, elegant society dance bands in the mold of the legendary bandleader Lester Lanin, for whom Mr. Donner used to work.

The Alex Donner Orchestra is well known at the prominent suburban wedding meccas and catering temples, including the Hilton Short Hills, the Hyatt in Greenwich, Conn., and the Westchester Country Club.

Read the full article here.

NY Post logo

Yo-Yo Ma’s daughter didn’t want him to play at her wedding

By EMILY SMITH October 4th, 2014, on “Page Six” of the New York Post.

Legendary cellist Yo-Yo Ma’s daughter Emily Hornor Ma was recently married in the Berkshires, but asked her father not to play at her wedding because she wanted him to “just be a dad that night.”She married RBC investment banker John Mistovich at Trinity Episcopal Church in Lenox, Mass., in front of 300 guests.

Instead of Yo-Yo, the Alex Donner Orchestra performed at the reception at a private home, and they played the “Blue Danube Waltz” for the newlyweds’ first dance, then the father and bride danced to “My Girl.”

Read the full article here.


First Wedding Albums, Then Videos, Now Soundtracks

05/03/2013 03:24 pm ET | Updated Jul 02, 2013

So I began to offer a new type of wedding album, a soundtrack that includes the personalized tunes, toasts and speeches, the all-important first dance and other songs performed by the Alex Donner Orchestra on CD or MP3. I have had wonderful feedback from couples that on their anniversary turn the lights down low, put our CD on, close their eyes and dance together or simply hold hands and listen to the music. They tell me it takes them back to that special day better than a video!

Read the full article here.

WSJ logo

The Hamptons’ Biggest Event Benefits All

August 6, 2012

By all accounts, the biggest event in the Hamptons—at least when it comes to sheer numbers—and one of the longest-running ones, too, is the annual Southampton Hospital Summer Party…

For the last 10 years, the Alex Donner Orchestra has performed at the party. To rev up the evening a little bit the chairwoman of the party this year helped choose a theme inspired by the Grand Prix Monaco.

Read the full article here.

WAG logo

The Wedding Singer

by Georgette Gouveia November 5, 2012

Former divorce lawyer says it with music

ALEX DONNER has seen them coming and going. Or should that be going and coming?

“In the entertainment business, I see people at their very best,” he says. “And I saw them at their worst as a divorce lawyer.”

That’s because Donner – a part-time Garrison resident who practiced matrimonial law in a firm in which Roy Cohn was a lead partner – has been a successful singer and bandleader for 25 years, performing for everyone from Frank Sinatra to Tom Cruise, everywhere from San Francisco to Jaipur.

At times, it was a bit confusing.

“I had one (business) card in one pocket and the other in another pocket. Once, I handed my divorce lawyer’s card to a woman who was getting married. That didn’t go over too big.”

Read the full article here.


Glittering Galleries at the Field

BY JUDY CARMACK BROSS November 15, 2017

The museum’s young professional group attended the Gala After-Party, and Alex Donner and his orchestra played well into the night.

See the full article here.


Alex Donner and His Soundtrack for Happiness

by Holly Oliphant  August 2017

“Growing up, bandleader Alex Donner’s diplomat parents scripted a predictable plan for their son: elite schools, summers in the Hamptons, and a career in law. A perfect plan. But all plans sometimes have detours.

“As a kid, I dreamt of being an NFL star running back,” he said.

“That wasn’t the detour. Instead, he followed the traditional road that his parents had hoped for, with occasional pit stops to explore his lifelong passion for music.

The sophisticated rhythm of Manhattan was always a backdrop in his life, drawing him to clubs all over the city. While young Alex followed his parents’ prescribed plan, he spent free time playing in teenage bands, eventually gaining a following that led to him crooning Frank Sinatra style at some of the tony boîtes of Gotham.”

Read the full article here.


Hudson Valley Shakespeare Festival Sets Date for Summer Gala, Reveals Reading Series Lineup

by BWW News Desk  May 17, 2017

“OBIE Award-winning singer-songwriter Heather Christian, who composes music for the Festival and lives in nearby Beacon, will provide live entertainment and introduce the 2017 Acting Company. A live auction will be conducted by Sotheby’s Executive Vice President C. Hugh Hildesley, with an elegant dinner and dancing with the Alex Donner Orchestra to follow. The evening’s festivities begin at 5:00pm.”

Read the full article here.


Dodie Kazanjian and Calvin Tomkins to be Honored at Newport Art Museum’s Summer Gala

Written by Ryan Belmore, June 14, 2017

“Guests will dance the night away to the live music of Alex Donner & His Orchestra. Donner has built a reputation for elegant music that “makes the party swing.” New York Magazine has called him, simply “the best!” The Orchestra has entertained a long list of luminaries over the years, from President George H.W. Bush and the Rockefeller family to Kevin Klein and Queen Noor of Jordan. His recordings have received several Grammy nominations.”

Read the full article here.



by Joe Alexander with photographs by Patrick McMullan  May 29, 2017

Nicole Noonan and Alex Donner featured in the Memorial Day edition of Social Life Magazine!

View the picture here.


The Sound of Giving: Alex Donner

by Ava Roosevelt  Spring 2017

“Seldom does philanthropy sound so exhilarating. The dapper Alex Donner has mixed a career in music with a serious commitment to philanthropy for more than a quarter of a century and inspired many not only to dance but also to give.

Alex Donner has been dubbed “the best entertainment provider in the east… if not in the country” by The New York Times and other esteemed critics. His music and voice, reminiscent of Frank Sinatra days, have become a permanent fixture among discerning socialites and demanding young brides. His company, Alex Donner Entertainment, has built a reputation for elegant music that “makes the party swing” while being able to converse with your partner without losing your voice.”

Read the full article here and here.


Beth Stern, Katharine McPhee salute hero dogs at Mar-a-Lago luncheon

by Shannon Donnelly  Thursday, March 23, 2017

“The afternoon included reception, luncheon, remarks by animal advocate Beth Stern, a performance by American Idol’s Katharine McPhee and music by the Alex Donner Orchestra.

Read the full article here.


New York City Mission Society’s Annual Champions for Children Gala Kick Off Party

by Yvonna Russell  March 2, 2017

“The evening’s entertainment will feature Kathy Sledge, the legendary voice of Sister Sledge, acclaimed singer Alex Donner and his Orchestra, and students enrolled in the Mission Society’s free afterschool music education program, GRIOT. ”

Read the full article here.


Jean Shafiroff And Katrina Peebles Co-Chair New York City Mission Society’s Champion For Children Gala

by Lee Fryd

“Cicely Tyson, Gayle King, former New York City Mayor David Dinkins, Bronx Borough President Ruben Diaz, Jr., and designer B Michael added star power to the gala. WABC News Anchor Bill Ritter, a longtime supporter of the Mission Society, emceed. Legendary Sister Sledge singer, Kathy Sledge, rocked the room. Alex Donner and his Orchestra added their signature touch of class. ”

Read the full article here.


America’s Top Military Heroes Honored

News provided by American Humane         Feb 13, 2017, 11:10 ET

“American Idol sensation Stefano Langone and the world-renowned Alex Donner Orchestra provided first-class entertainment.”

Read the full article here.

NY Daily News logo

Conductor Alex Donner providing music for the New York Mission Society Gala’ tribute to singer Diahann Carroll at the Mandarin Oriental…

Read the full article here.


International Society of Palm Beach holds holiday gala

By PBDN  Posted: 12:00 a.m. Sunday, December 25, 2016

“Opera singer Francesco Valpa entertained as did the Alex Donner Orchestra.”

Read the full article here.


Chic Masked Ball Gala Draws Top New York Names and Francophiles


Guests dined in the Plaza’s Grand Ballroom and danced to the music of Alex Donner and his orchestra, while celebrity auctioneer Nicholas Lowry led the live auction. This exceptionally festive event was a run-up to the the French Heritage Society’s 35th anniversary in 2017, which will be highlighted by a gala at the historic Chateau de Compiegne in France.. Proceeds from the event will support the restoration of French architectural heritage.

Read the full article here.


Annual Ball – Mayflower

In the years since, 250 debutantes from many different state Societies have been presented and the event remains a highlight of the social season in New York. Guests are treated to a gourmet dinner and the music of the Alex Donner Orchestra. Although the highlight of the evening is the presentation of debutantes, former debutantes are also recognized. Plymouth Awards are often presented to individuals..etc.

Read full page here.


Health Advocates for Older People, a Manhattan based service organization, held their 31st annual gala on Monday, October 5th at the Yale Club. They honored community leaders Patricia Butts, Alex Donner and Rev. Brenda Husson along with The Junior League of the City of New York. Supporters recognized these leaders for their outstanding contributions. Read the full article here.


Hooch wins top title of ‘American Hero Dog’September 13, 2016

The sixth annual Hero Dogs Awards is presented by the Lois Pope LIFE Foundation, Inc. was broadcast nationally on Hallmark Channel October 28 at 8 pm ET/PT, 7 pm Central Time.

Read the full article here.


Celebs and Socials Come Out to Support
the Southampton Animal Shelter Foundation
Master of ceremonies Chuck Scarborough welcomed more than 300 guests, including Southampton Councilman John Bouvier, Anna Throne-Holst, Richard Demato, Kim Renk, Ellen Scarborough, Debra Hearst, Lilianna Cavendish, Sony Schotland, Greg D’Elia, Martin Shafiroff and Rachel Grant, in addition to Junior Committee members Kate McEntee, Scott Stevenson, Elizabeth Shafiroff, Phil Piro,Merritt Piro, Charles McConnell, and Sara Vacchiano. Dinner was provided by Robbins Wolfe Eventeurs and music by the Alex Donner Orchestra. Read the full article here.


Museum ball to honor ‘Glamorous Graffiti’

Posted: Thursday, June 9, 2016 12:54 pm

Guests will dance to the music of the Alex Donner Orchestra, and will bid for exciting auction prizes including artwork, jewelry, fine dining and unique event experiences. 

Read the full article here.


Greenwich Native Receives Silvermine’s Inaugural Living Art Award

By Patch Staff (Patch National Staff) May 24, 2016 7:45 pm ET

Over 200 artists and friends of Silvermine were welcomed to the sold-out event by Board Chair Rose-Marie Fox and Living Art Awards Committee Chairs Mindy Green and Emily McDermott. Guests danced to the Alex Donner Orchestra and enjoyed hors d’oeuvres and dinner by Marcia Selden Catering.  Silvermine faculty members Rachel Morris and Mark Andreas created the awards, which have a crafted mahogany base and a pewter inset based on a Hilda Krause tree design.

Read the full article here.


Talents on Display at Dreyfoos School Anniversary Gala at Mar-a-Lago

by Shannon Donnelly  Daily News Society Editor       Posted: 12:00 p.m. Wednesday, March 16, 2016

Robert Bailey and Theodora Aspegren were chairman and chairwoman for the evening, which began with a poolside cocktails accompanied by a string quartet, a jazz combo, sketches by visual arts students and guest interviews by communications majors.

After cocktails, guests moved to the Grand Ballroom, where the school’s namesake, Alex Dreyfoos, was honored by founding principal Edmund Duhy, current principal Susan Atherley and founding School of the Arts Foundation board member George Elmore.

The evening continued with dinner, entertainment by current and former students, a live auction, and dancing to the Alex Donner Orchestra.

Read the full article here.


American Humane Association and Philanthropist Lois Pope Celebrate Heroes on Both Ends of the Leash at “Hero Dog Awards Gala Luncheon” in Palm Beach

Mar 07, 2016, 11:15 ET from American Humane Association

The luncheon, hosted by the internationally-distinguished Florida philanthropist Lois Pope and American Humane Association, also featured the participation of a number of two-legged stars:  TV personality animal welfare advocate and philanthropist Beth Stern, who serves as co-host of the Hero Dog Awards ceremony on the Hallmark Channel; TV personality, restaurateur, and author Donatella Arpaia, who provided the recipe for the scrumptious dessert served at the event; and Dave Konig, a three-time Emmy Award comedian and TV actor, who gave a hilarious performance. The Alex Donner Orchestra provided a special musical performance.

Read the full article here.


International Society gala echoes St. Petersburg palaceBy PBDN     Posted: 8:17 a.m. Friday, Dec. 25, 2015

Entertainment included 17 ballerinas and one male dancer from the Dreyfoos School of Dance under the choreography of Jan Hanniford, dean of dance, plus a performance by the New York-based Barynya Ensemble, which featured Russian and Ukranian dances and songs.

The Alex Donner Orchestra completed the entertainment.

Read the full article here.


Inside the Southampton Hospital’s 57th Annual Summer Party
by Taylor Neverman    August 5, 2015
Emceed by television journalist, Chuck Scarbourough helped kick off the soiree that was transformed into a timeless black and white masterpiece. Beautifully executed and designed by the imagination and creativity of Tony Urrutia, guests attending the event were in for a haute affair. While taking in the simplistic and elegant design of this year’s party, people enjoyed a charming dinner catered by Robbins Wolfe Eventeurs. During and after their meal, attendees danced to music by the Alex Donner Orchestra that kept everyone on their feet.
Read the full article here.

WSJ logo

Buzz and Boards Bring In Young Crowd
‘Endless Summer’ at the Southampton Hospital Benefit

To entertain the crowd, Ms. Lofaro Freeman asked Alex Donner and his orchestra to rethink the musical set. She helped the band get peppier outfits, too, which included madras-print vests. “I asked for Adele, for the Beach Boys, for Katy Perry,” said Ms. Lofaro Freeman.
Read the full article here.

The Soundtrack of Reunionsby Lauren Wyman ’14    Published in the July 9, 2014 Issue

This year, Alex Donner ’75 did what he had done several times before: play for his father’s class at Reunions. “He loves it,” Donner said of his father, Joseph Donner ’49. “But he sometimes leaves the party early when we get into our more contemporary music.”

Alex Donner leads the Alex Donner Orchestra. While his orchestra plays everything from “Gershwin to Gaga,” Donner said, he most enjoys playing the American standards, such as Frank Sinatra and Elvis.

“We’re a mix of expert musicians in different genres and each one of us inspires the others in the other genres,” he said. “We try to do seamless transitions.”

His favorite Reunions moments? “Every time that I can see three generations out on the dance floor all having a great time,” Donner said.

Read the full article here.


And the Band Plays On: Alex Donner and 26 Years of Event Entertainment

By Ted Kruckel       Posted August 20, 2014, 7:15 AM EDT

The real secret to any great event like this is getting the people to get up and dance. If people dance, they have a great time, and they want to come back. Right? For that, the Southampton Hospital has turned for 15 years to the Alex Donner Orchestra. I remember learning that Alex Donner recently celebrated his 25th year at the helm of what is now practically the industry standard for full orchestra entertainment.

Inquiring vaguely about upcoming events, I get a list of 20 events booked already between now and Christmas, yielding a dizzying array of upper-crusty-sounding events and locations. Mar-a-Lago (Palm Beach), the Mayflower Ball at Union League Club (New York), the Quadrille Ball (New York), the National Debutante Cotillion and Ball (Washington, D.C.), and my favorite, the Society of Colonial Wars in the State of New York Holiday Ball at the Colony Club (one assumes it is invitation-only).

Read the full article here.


Actresses Alysia Reiner and Christiane Seidel and designer Rachel Roy wearing Hearts on Fire diamonds at a party at the Rainbow Room for “Carol”…
Dr. Judith Hellman and bandleader Alex Donner helping philanthropist Jean Shafiroff collect over 200 toys for the NYC Mission Society at her Park Ave. apartment…

NY Post logo

Counsel also sings

NYC Comptroller Scott Stringer‘s director of litigation added a night job. After settling $5.9 mil on Eric Garner’s family, Lynell Canagata will sing with Alex Donner and Consuelo Vanderbilt Costin at Southampton Hospital’s party on Saturday. One song will be “Mony Mony”.

Southampton Press logo

The final stop of the night was a beautiful oceanside home on Gin Lane for the sixth annual Unconditional Love Gala to benefit the Southampton Animal Shelter. Cocktails and a fantastic silent auction, followed up by dinner and dancing, were the order of the evening….Alex Donner and his band were at the top of their form that night. They started off slow, with lovely background music, but then they stepped it up and had the dance floor packed for the rest of the evening.

NY Post logo

We hear…
That Diddy will take over the Fontainebleau Hotel in Miami Beach from Oct. 16 to 19 for Revolt TV’s first Music Conference…
That Alex Donner will play Southampton Hospital’s Summer Party on Saturday for guests including Chuck Scarborough…

WSJ logo

‘Positive Movement’ For ALS Nonprofit June, 26 2013

Prize4Life, a nonprofit that seeks to discover treatments and a cure for ALS, also known as Lou Gehrig’s disease, on Monday held its annual gala at Sotheby’s in Manhattan. The event honored board member Cynthia Mazareas and her husband George Mazareas, a former basketball player in Greece who has ALS. The benefit began with a cocktail reception and music from the Alex Donner Orchestra followed by a live auction.

Read the full article here

AM new york logo

Gay Wedding Planning: Venues, florists, cakes, caterers, photogs and more By Kaathrine Herrup June 23, 2013

With wedding season in full swing and the upcoming second anniversary of gay marriage becoming legal in New York, we felt it only appropriate to roll out a wedding guide for same-sex couples. We’ve compiled a list of top wedding planners, favorite venues to host the ceremony and reception, and other top-notch wedding vendors ranging from cake makers to florists and photographers – some of whom are even offering special deals and discounts in celebration of these monumental events.

Music – Alex Donner Entertainment

Since April, Alex Donner has been giving a 25% reduction in his prices for gay weddings. The Alex Donner Orchestra can take any song request, and is always ready to get the party started. He’s a good reader of people’s musical desires and can cater to their fancies at the drop of a beat.

Read the full article here

Quest Logo

The Bandleader Played On

By Lily Hoagland     August 2013

Alex Donner grew up on the east side of Manhattan and, as a young boy, accompanied his father downtown to hear jazz. This ignited a love of music that would follow him through his life. Before forming his first band at Princeton University, he performed to the crowds in the Metro in Paris.Since then, he has had a meteoric rise as a bandleader to the stars, playing receptions, weddings, and events for the boldest of bold-faced names. I had the pleasure of chatting with the musician about his past – and present – success.

Read the full article here and here.

NY Post logo

He’s Fonda History, Stage By Cindy Adams June 26, 2013

Georgina Bloomberg danced with dogs at the Bideawee Ball. Band Leader Alex Donner: “Those hounds moved better than Mick Jagger when I played for him at Studio 54.”

This article appeared in the “Page Six” section of the U.S. edition of The New York Post.

Read the full article here.

AD press Kit Super 2_html_m6d14604

Posted on March 30, 2013

“In London…At Annabelle’s, looking down the guest list, you saw many of those fancy names…von Bismarck, von Furstenberg, Goulandris, Spencer-Churchill. Titles galore. Alex Donner’s band had been flown over from New York…and the crowd couldn’t stop dancing.”


Alex Donner: Society Band Leader

by Helaina Hovitz May 2013

Alex Donner’s music has lured elite partygoers out of their seats and onto the dance floor at Southampton Hospital’s annual Summer Party for 10 years. A native New Yorker and Princeton University graduate, the former divorce attorney is celebrating 25 years of performing at the East Coast’s most glamorous parties, from celebrity weddings to charity benefits. Donner says the biggest crowd pleasers are still standards like New York, New York and My Girl, though he’s getting requests for pop hits like Call Me Maybe and songs by Rihanna and Beyonce. He doesn’t sing these himself, though. “I let another band member do the more contemporary hits. I don’t come out in drag and do Lady Gaga,” he laughs.

Read the full article here.


Alex Donner Celebrates 25 Years

For Alex Donner, one of America’s most popular bandleaders, 2013 marks his 25th anniversary in the business. Throughout his illustrious career as entertainer, Alex has performed for many upscale clients…remarkable talent.

Read the full article here.


The Alex Donner Orchestra kept the dance floor going. Funds raised by the Summer Party, the longest running annual fundraiser on the East End, enables critical support for the Jenny and John Paulson Emergency Department, a facility that serves emergency care to more than 25,000 patients annually.


A guest at a glittering Southampton Hospital benefit on Saturday night wound up in the hospital instead. The socialite was seen swooning in the heat, and, after hitting the deck, the brave dame initially refused medical attention, spies said. Despite her protests, an ambulance was called, whisking her off to the ER — which was, appropriately, moments from the party’s tony tent. “The benefit raised money for the hospital’s department of emergency medicine, so I guess they put the money to good use,” quipped an attendee at the bash, which brought in nearly $2 million. Guests included Peter Brant and Stephanie Seymour, Chuck Scarborough, Debbie Bancroft, Audrey and Martin Gruss. The Alex Donner Orchestra provided tunes at the shindig.


This past Saturday in Southampton, the Southampton Hospital held its 54th annual festive evening of cocktails, silent auction, raffle, dinner and dancing to benefit the Hospital’s Emergency room…Alex Donner and his Orchestra provided the music for dancing…Alex Donner’s band revved up the crowd up with an extended version of “Respect,” my absolute #1, favorite song to dance to (followed closely by “It’s Raining Men”).


Q&A: Bandleader Alex Donner on 25 Years in the BusinessBandleader Alex Donner has been performing all over the world with his orchestra for nearly 25 years. A native New Yorker, he started out as a divorce lawyer and decided he’d rather work with people on a happier day in their lives: their wedding. After some big gigs as a wedding singer, he broadened his horizons to major events and celebrity clients. Now he heads up Alex Donner Entertainment, a company that focuses on providing entertainment for your special event. On the eve on his milestone anniversary, he spoke to us about his favorite gigs and his upcoming performances.

Read the full article here.


. . . THAT Southampton Hospital’s gala, chaired by Laura Lofaro Freeman on Aug. 4, will feature a Grand Prix theme with three vintage Formula One cars and music by Alex Donner.


57th Annual Palm Beach Heart Ball “Gardens for the Heart” a Star-Studded Success
With Donald Trump and Tony Dovolani of Dancing with the Stars & the Alex Donner OrchestraMore than 360 guests joined the American Heart Association for its 57th Annual Palm Beach Heart Ball on February 17, 2012 at The Mar-a-Lago Club. Paula Butler served as Chairman of the Gala, Patrick Park was Honorary Chairman and Burt Reynolds was Honorary Ambassador. More than $600,000 net was raised which will go directly to fighting heart disease and stroke.


Liz Smith and Gerald L. Storch, C.E.O. of Toys “R” Us to Be Honored at Child Protection Agency’s Gala at the Pierre Hotel October 27, 2010 in New York. Deborah Norville to Emcee. Alex Donner will provide the music.

AD press Kit Super 2_html_mb4cd20c

Southampton Hospital Summer Party, A Centennial Celebration
Alex Donner took to the stage to lead his sprightly Big Band and immediately the parquet floor was filled with dancers swinging to the strains of In the Mood and other swing era melodies plus some very hot contemporary tunes later on in the evening. No one wanted to leave…


Where did you get your start? I got my start 20 years ago. I always had a band in college. I became a divorce lawyer, but had a job as the bandleader at El Morocco. I was hired by a divorce client to play their second wedding in India. Town & Country did a story about it and my switchboard started to ring off the hook. I knew then, to go full time with the band.


More than 300 ready-for-a-party young folks followed the tiki torches to The Mar-a-Lago Beach Club to celebrate the American Red Cross. This annual Young Friends of the Red Cross Beach Bash took place Dec. 30


On October 3, 2008, one of New York City’s most elegant galas, the Soldiers’, Sailors’, Marines’, Coast Guard and Airmen’s Club (SSMAC) honored the United States Navy at its 12th Annual Military Ball, which is SSMAC’s principal fundraising effort. More than 400 guests attended the black tie event at the Pierre. Alex Donner provided the music.


…More than 1500 V.I.P guests from all over the world joined him for his birthday celebration. The mandatory costumes reflected the 1940’s era of glamour and swing dance. World-renowned orchestra leader Alex Donner will kick off the night with a major big band. In addition, private jet owners will be able to arrive by air and utilize their planes as their personal V.I.P. rooms


April 12, 2008 –WE HEAR that Miami nightclub promoter Michael Capponi is dropping a bundle on his 36th-birthday party tonight. Capponi has rented out the main terminal of Miami Executive Aviation for a party that will feature WWII planes & music by Alex Donner


More from Palm Beach … Dressed in white, more than 350 mostly Junior friends felt the sand beneath their feet and the ocean breeze as they danced the night away at the 8th Annual Barefoot on the Beach, which was held at the Breaker’s Beach Club, benefited the Boys and Girls Clubs of Palm Beach County… Alex Donner’s Party Band kept everyone dancing all night long.


“The best entertainment provider in the east…if not the country!”


“Southampton Hospital Gala…1000 guests…they’ll be serenaded with songs by the magnificent Alex Donner.”

AD press Kit Super 2_html_51010adf

“At the Southampton Hospital Party, Alex Donner & his band kept the guests entertained & had them dancing the night away in spite of the heat.”


Alex Donner named Best New York Band


Mayor Bloomberg’s officially proclaimed last September 12th Decoration & Design Day to honor the 40th anniversary of the legendary D&D Building at 979 Third Avenue. To mark the occasion, the Lenox Hill Neighborhood House threw a rousing birthday party for the Building. Alex Donner and his band put everyone in the mood for a good time. NYSD 2006