Symphony Fashion Show: New York to Nashville

Without a doubt, the best ladies’ night out in Nashville for the past 14 years has been the Symphony Fashion Show. At the weeknight affair, women of all ages arrive in their finest attire, most dazzling jewelry and highest heels to sip Champagne in the courtyard at the Schermerhorn Symphony Center before viewing the latest fashions by a renowned clothing designer in the Laura Turner Concert Hall.

In mid-January, everyone was thrilled when co-chairs Barbara Burns and Ashley Rosen announced that Zang Toi would be the featured designer for the 15th annual show, originally scheduled for April 14. When COVID-19 hit, the show was rescheduled for August 26 but was ultimately canceled as the pandemic continued into the summer. Fortunately, Zang's Nashville trunk show — scheduled to begin on the same date — was not.

In lieu of showing his stunning Fall 2020 collection to 700-plus admirers at the Schermerhorn, Zang and Gus Mayer hosted a few mini fashion shows for select Nashville Symphony supporters — including honorary chair Barbara Bovender — and his most loyal customers, in addition to welcoming excited shoppers to the Green Hills boutique for four days.

When we interviewed Zang for our March fashion issue, he described his Fall 2020 runway collection as a tribute to his beloved adopted home, New York City. He captured the sophistication and a bit of the grit of the city in a show that opened with magnificent black and gray separates, segued into chic pieces in pop art pink, red and blue and taxicab yellow and closed with glamorous, hand-beaded looks depicting NYC landmarks.

Zang Toi loves New York. He also loves Nashville, and the ladies here love him back. For four days, they sipped bubbly, admired clothing and ordered, ordered, ordered. And when their clothes arrive, they will not only look great, they’ll also feel great because Gus Mayer donated a percentage of their purchases to the Nashville Symphony.