Maria Manetti Shrem Champions Festival Napa Valley with $3 Million Challenge

Maria Manetti Shrem Champions Festival Napa Valley with  Million Challenge

NAPA, Calif., Nov. 9, 2023 /PRNewswire/ — Festival Napa Valley has announced the Manetti Shrem Challenge, a $3 million matching gift from longtime benefactor Maria Manetti Shrem.

Designed to inspire new giving, the Manetti Shrem Challenge will act as a catalyst for accelerating the growth of Festival Napa Valley’s year-round programming, educational initiatives, and scholarship programs.

“I believe the art of living is the art of giving,” said Maria Manetti Shrem in announcing the gift. “Festival Napa Valley embodies the best of art’s potential to transform lives and create positive change. By presenting this challenge, I hope to inspire the next generation of philanthropists to join me in supporting this wonderful organization, ensuring the future of the arts in Napa Valley and beyond.”

Festival Napa Valley President and CEO Rick Walker stated, “We are grateful to Maria for her generosity and commitment. The Manetti Shrem Challenge enhances Festival Napa Valley’s capacity to enrich lives and empower our community.”

Maria Manetti Shrem has been instrumental in supporting Festival Napa Valley since its inception in 2006. Her contributions include the establishment of the Festival’s Manetti Shrem Opera Program, a comprehensive celebration of vocal arts that nurtures the careers of talented singers with innovative opera productions on the Festival stage, a tuition-free summer conservatory for preprofessional vocalists, a vocal arts series featuring established stars and emerging talent, and the Manetti Shrem Opera Prize, as well as the Maria Manetti Shrem Daniel Brewbaker Composer Prize. In recognition of their many contributions to the success of Festival Napa Valley, Jan and Maria Manetti Shrem were named 2022 recipients of the Angels of the Arts award, the Festival’s highest honor.

In 2024 the Festival will introduce a new annual event, “La Dolce Vita: Maria Manetti Celebrates…”, paying tribute to iconic Italian figures in film, fashion, design, arts, food, and wine. This program will strengthen the historic bonds between Italy and the San Francisco Bay Area and will debut with a 2024 celebration of the life and career of Sophia Loren.

Every new gift during the Manetti Shrem Challenge will double its impact. To contribute, please contact Tessa Edwards at 707-927-3874.

For more information about Festival Napa Valley, visit

About Festival Napa Valley

Festival Napa Valley celebrates music’s unmatched power to uplift and inspire. Napa Valley’s flagship festival presents international stars and emerging talent during the summer season in Napa and year-round on iconic stages in the San Francisco Bay Area and beyond. With inspiring education programs for youth and seniors, tuition-free academies for vocalists and instrumentalists, and scholarships for talented students, Festival Napa Valley plays a vital part in creating a thriving, healthy, and engaged community.

About Maria Manetti Shrem

Originally from Florence, Maria Manetti Shrem moved to San Francisco in 1972 and became instrumental in the internationalization of iconic fashion brands Gucci and Fendi under the umbrella brand of Manetti Farrow. Today, her focus is philanthropy. She and her husband, Jan Shrem, support more than 30 charities in the U.S., Italy, and the U.K. across the fields of the fine arts, education, science, and music. They are co-founders of the Manetti Shrem Museum of Art at UC Davis. Maria and Jan are recipients of Festival Napa Valley’s highest honor, the Angels of the Arts award, recognizing their outstanding contributions to the arts. 

SOURCE Festival Napa Valley

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