Roulette’s 45th Anniversary Gala

Gala Co-Chairs

Benefit Committee

Daniel Senn, Roulette co-founder
Laurie Szujewska, Roulette co-founder
David Weinstein, Roulette co-founder
John Madsen
Joseph and Nancy Walker

Bruce Andrews
M.V. Carbon
Jennifer Choi
Sylvie Courvoisier
Mario Diaz de Leon
Paul Gertner & Rochelle Serwator
Jason McMahon & Sarah Rosen
Mimi Johnson
Jim Hodges
Darius Jones
Gayle Morgan
Ikue Mori
David & Sarah Nuss
Zeena Parkins
Matana Roberts
Ned Rothenberg
Jen Shyu


For the first time in Roulette’s history, Roulette’s Board of Directors, co-founders, staff, and community invite you to join us in honoring James S. Staley for his 45 years of visionary leadership at Roulette. The evening commemorates an incredible milestone, as Staley will be stepping down from his post as Artistic Director at the end of the season. Come celebrate him with us on this special day.

In the spirit of celebration, incoming Artistic Director Matt Mehlan has brought together an extraordinary cohort of talented duos for Roulette’s 45th Anniversary Gala, including performances by:

Henry Threadgill
Yuka Honda
and Nels Cline
Immanuel Wilkins and Joel Ross
Zeena Parkins and Ikue Mori
Holland Andrews and yuniya edi kwon
John Zorn and Jim Staley


6:30pm | cocktails and hors d’oeuvres
7:30pm | dinner, performances, and celebration
9:00pm | dessert and party

Tickets and More Information

Anniversary Table — $15,000/Premium Dinner Seating for 8 (SOLD OUT)

Founder’s Table — $8,000/Dinner Seating for 8 (SOLD OUT)

Founder’s Ticket — $1,000/Dinner Seating at Founder’s Table (ONLY 4 LEFT)

Mezzanine Seating — $125 (SOLD OUT)

All guests enjoy delicious hors d’oeuvres and dessert from Bartleby and Sage, an open bar, and champagne toast. Guests seated at tables enjoy dinner during the performances and beverage service. Guests seated in the balcony enjoy small bites and bar service. A full menu can be found at the bottom of this page

Support with a Personal Message

All proceeds from the evening support the next chapter of groundbreaking experimental work at Roulette. Can’t make it, but still want to support? 


Donations of $250 or more come with the option to display a personal message to our honoree Jim Staley. Messages are displayed at the gala on our 240” wide x 135” tall projection screen throughout the evening, and are compiled into a physical book for Staley as a special keepsake afterwards.

Jim Staley has become an iconic staple in shaping and forever changing the experimental music scene of New York City. However, many don’t realize that Roulette’s origins began well before its founding in his Tribeca loft. After graduating from the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, Staley enlisted in the U.S Army, where he spent three years playing trombone in military bands. While stationed in Berlin from 1971 to 1973, Staley became inspired by the collectivist, envelope-pushing spirit of the German avant-garde music scene; Slide Hampton had a particular influence on Staley while he played in Hampton’s band abroad.

After his service period, he returned to Champaign-Urbana, where he was tasked with caretaking for a family property. Staley immediately turned the property into a space where artists and students could live, create, and experiment at little to no cost — affectionately coined “Staley Manor” — and where he ultimately met Roulette’s co-founders before moving to New York in 1978 and establishing Roulette. In 1991, Staley founded Einstein Records.

Since those early days, Roulette has not only survived, but modernized and thrived under Staley’s care. What began as a small experiment in his home has evolved into an internationally recognized venue, presenter, and producer of experimental work by some of today’s most extraordinary minds.

He received the 2005 Susan E. Kennedy Memorial Award, the 2012 ASCAP award, and was named a 2018 Champion of New Music by the American Composers’ Forum for his years in support of artists. And yet, he has never been honored here, at his home, by the people he’s amassed around him over the past 45 years. Now is that time. As Roulette looks to the future, we invite you to join us in honoring the man behind it all.

photo credit: Lona Foote

For questions or more information, please contact Emily Bookwalter, Director of Development, at, 917.267.2440