Our Honoree

 Founding Sponsor - Mandy Grant, E-RYT 500

 Owner and Head Teacher at Juluka Yoga

Founder, owner, and head yoga instructor at Juluka Yoga, Hillsdale, NJ, Mandy Grant is also the proud mom of the talented young award winning golfer Kyle and the beautiful and gregarious Westy Charlie.  She taught peace4paws about the the ahimsa which means non-violence to all living things. Her spin on this concept inspired the birth of this charity.  Yes, Mandy has been an inspiration to peace4paws from the beginning as well as to hundreds of adults of all ages who entrusted her to teach them about yoga so they could hopefully share all the good that yoga has to offer to others as well.

Mandy write on her website www.julukayoga.com “I knew from the beginning that I wanted to teach yoga, so I began to study in earnest. I have been blessed to have experienced the guidance and teachings of some of the most wonderful yoga teachers out there. They have included the well known, like Sri K. Pattabhi Jois, Shiva Rea, John Friend, Duncan Wong, Dharma Mittra and David Life and Sharon Gannon. I have also been taught by the lesser known names, and their guidance, teachings and inspiration have meant more to me than they will ever know.”

Yoga is more than just stretching, strengthening, and breathing.  It is a philosophy.  It is about peacefulness.

Mandy writes “I truly believe that yoga is the answer to so many problems in our world. It raises our consciousness, opens our hearts, and enables us to realize the innate compassion and love that exists in all of us. Although the teachings and theories of yoga are thousands of years old, they so apply to us today. I came to yoga initially to get fit, a better body, and if it made me more relaxed-well that was cool. I was not aware of all the other precious gifts I was to receive on the way.”

It is obvious that the inspiration Mandy Grant has received on her journey is something she shares with others with genuine enthusiasm and conviction.  Helping animals helps people.  Mandy has directly helped animal charities through peace4paws consistently for the past seven years.  Peace4paws and Juluka co-sponsor a horse at Mylestone Equine Rescue named Cleo for about five years now. Mandy doesn’t want to see any animal suffer, and thus has helped peace4paws from the onset.  More on Mandy at the event (or at her studio).  She is quite stunning in person in more ways than one.

We welcome 2 new performers Erin and Jovier!

Erin Schwab

Erin Schwab recently complete her undergraduate studies at Rutgers' Mason Gross School of the Arts, where she received a B.M. In Vocal Performance. Previous operatic roles include Lucia (The Rape of Lucretia), Nanetta (Falstaff), Noèmie (Cendrillon) and Lucy Lockitt (The Beggar's Opera). For the past three years, Erin has participated as a young artist at the Castleon Fetival, where she worked intensively with the late conductor and founder of the festival, Lorin Maazel. She was a national semifinalist in the 2012 Classical Singer competition and a national finalist in the 2013 New York Lyric Opera Theatre competition.

Jovier Sanchez

Jovier Sanchez has been concertizing and appearing in opera and musical theatre all over the tri-state area for nearly 24 years.  He recently made his rock-opera debut in Cliff Jones' Rockabye Hamlet

as Hamlet.  He also made his Canadian debut with Sara Henry in William Grant Still's rarely performed masterwork, Troubled Island, as Vuval.  Favorite roles (operatic and otherwise) include:

Le Comte Ory (title role); Anna Bolena (Hervey); Roberto Devereaux (Cecil/title role understudy); Il Trovatore (Ruiz/rehearsal Manrico); Don Giovanni (Don Ottavio);

Little Shop of Horrors (Mr. Mushnik); Bad Seed (LeRoy); Sweeney Todd (Pirelli); Mozart's requiem (soloist); Rossini's Stabat Mater (soloist); Orff's Carmina Burana (soloist); Handel's Messiah (soloist). Enjoy the show!

Jennifer Cece

Jennifer Cece Bellon, soprano, of Westwood, NJ is glad to be performing at Bibi’z again for Peace4Paws. Favorite opera roles include Donna Elvira in Don Giovanni, Susanna in The Marriage of Figaro,

Musetta in La Boheme, Blonchen in The Abduction from the Seraglio and Semiramide in Semiramide. Other favorite performances include appearances in NYC with the New York Opera Forum and

Mostly Mozart Festival at Lincoln Center, and in NJ: Rapunzel in Rapunzel at the Paper Mill Playhouse. She has sang with the North Jersey Symphony Orchestra, Rockland Symphony Orchestra, and

Baroque Orchestra of New Jersey. Ms. Cece attended the University of Richmond on a vocal scholarship, and earned a Masters in Music in classical Vocal Performance at New Jersey City University.

She was the first place winner in the NATS 2000 opera competition and has been teaching voice for 18 years. (See www.JenniferVocals.com) Future performances include the role of Armida in

Rinaldo with the New York Opera Forum this November 2014.

Jim Cagle

Bass-baritone Jim Cagle is a resident of Westwood as well as a native Oklahoman. Jim has performed several roles with Palisades Opera including Benoit and Alcindoro in La Boheme, Masetto in Don

Giovanni and Bartolo in Le nozze de Figaro. Earlier this year Jim performed in Andrea Chenier and, this summer, will be performing the role of Osmin in Die Entfuhrung aus dem Serail with the New York Opera Forum in NYC. 

Sara Henry

Hailed by the Jerusalem Post as "A Magnificent Dramatic Voice" versatile mezzo-soprano Sara Henry has sung leading and supporting roles in more than 30 operas, and has been seen in concert

throughout Europe, Asia, and North America. Ms. Henry began her formal vocal studies at La Scuola di Musico di Sesto in Florence, Italy, and later went on to graduate from Sarah Lawrence College, where she made her debut as the alto soloist in Bach's Weinachts Oratorio, under the baton of Grammy winning composer, George Tsontakis. Highlights of her career have included the roles of Semiramide (Semiramide), Donna Elvira (Don Giovanni), Diana (La Calisto), Adalgisa (Norma), Giovanna Seymour (Anna Bolena), Cherubino (Le nozze di Figaro) Xerxes (Xerxes) and the title role in Carmen, as well as a trio of Handelian heroes: Ariodante (Ariodante), Ruggiero (Alcina), and Arsamene (Serse). Ms. Henry also had the honor of portraying the dual roles of Azelia and Claire in the Canadian premiere of William Grant Still's seldom performed opera, Troubled Island.

Ronni Sarrett Lederman

Soprano Ronni Sarrett Lederman has sung Mini in La Boheme, Zerlina in Don Giovanni and the Countess in Le Nozze di Figaro with Palisades Opera, of which she is the founder. Other favorite roles  performed elsewhere include Marguerite in Faust, Pamina and the First Lady in The Magic Flute, Gilda in Rigoletto, Antonia in Tales of Hoffman, and Clarina in Le cambiale di matrimonio. She has performed with the Rockland Symphony Orchestra, Rockland Opera, the New York Opera Forum, West Side Opera Society, Hudson Lyric Opera and more. She is a voice teacher with a private vocal studio in Nyack, NY.

Our press release:


Join peace4paws on Wednesday, October 22 from 6:30 P.M. to 9:30 P.M. for Opera in October benefit dinner which includes a silent auction, passed hors d’oeuvres, a sumptuous three course dinner, singing by professional opera singers and more at Bibi’z Restaurant and Lounge, 284 Center Avenue, Westwood, NJ. 

Bibi’z is known for its global American Cuisine, fine organic wines and creative drink menu. Passed hors d’oeuvres and the silent auction will be at 6:30 pm.  The dinner to follow will include a delicious three course meal with ingredients . derived from local organic farms and sustainable fish markets and gluten free options. The main courses offered are roasted garlic-shrimp ravioli with lobster-dill cream sauce, chicken piccata, braised short ribs, vegan chick pea and edamame masala.   

The opera set will include Westwood natives' soprano Jennifer Cece and bass Jim Cagle, internationally recognized mezzo soprano, Sara Henry, Erin Schwab, Palisades Opera founder, Ronni Lederman of Nyack, and New York City tenor Jovier Sanchez and more. 

In addition, at Bibi'z on October 22 peace4paws will present another silent auction. They will offer a fine photographic print of Bruce Springstein taken by Barry Wohlman donated by Bergen County Camera and Gallery 270 .  A vacation stay at Block Island will also be offered. Other silent auction items include a signed guitar by Taylor Swift, a very rare Charles Schultz signed animated Snoopy drawing, a signed Beatles album, a signed Godfather poster, signed sheet music and photo by Katy Perry, and m ore. 

Honored at this event will be founding sponsor, Mandy Grant, Owner and Head Instructor at Juluka Yoga who has supported peace4paws since it’s inception.

Tickets for this event can be purchased by calling Bibi’z at 201.722.8600 or stopping by Bibi’z, Lewis Drugs or Watch Out Jewelers of Westwood, NJ.  

Peace4paws, is a Northern New Jersey based 501 c 3 animal advocacy charity that focuses on raising awareness and funds for the animals retired from work in research and related fields. Proceeds go to support the peace4paws foster-adoption program for the many sweet and wonderful beagles and other dogs peace4paws will be fostering, nurturing, training and re-homing this year.