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Paulson, Griffin, DiMenna Keep Ballerinas on Their Toes

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John Paulson, founder of Paulson & Co., and Sara Adams, lead Marzipan Shepherdess and a member of the New York City Ballet corps de ballet.

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John Paulson, founder of Paulson & Co., and Sara Adams, lead Marzipan Shepherdess and a member of the New York City Ballet corps de ballet. Close

John Paulson, founder of Paulson & Co., and Sara Adams, lead Marzipan Shepherdess and a member of the New York City... Read More

Photographer: Amanda Gordon/Bloomberg

Olivia Buisson, in costume as a flower in "The Nutcracker," signs autographs at the family benefit. Close

Olivia Buisson, in costume as a flower in "The Nutcracker," signs autographs at the family benefit.

Photographer: Amanda Gordon/Bloomberg

New York City Ballet principal dancers Tiler Peck and Robert Fairchild, who performed the roles of Sugar Plum Fairy and Cavalier for the family benefit performance of "The Nutcracker." Close

New York City Ballet principal dancers Tiler Peck and Robert Fairchild, who performed the roles of Sugar Plum Fairy... Read More

Photographer: Mary Hilliard via Bloomberg

New York City Ballet family benefit chairmen Sandra Lee, Julia Koch, and Joyce Giuffra; NYCB Principal Dancer Sterling Hyltin; and New York City Ballet family benefit chairmen Pauline Reyniak and Amy Griffin. Close

New York City Ballet family benefit chairmen Sandra Lee, Julia Koch, and Joyce Giuffra; NYCB Principal Dancer... Read More

Photographer: Amanda Gordon/Bloomberg

Lisa Maria Falcone and Philip Falcone, chairman and CEO, Harbinger Group Inc. at a New York City Ballet benefit in September 2011. Close

Lisa Maria Falcone and Philip Falcone, chairman and CEO, Harbinger Group Inc. at a New York City Ballet benefit in September 2011.

Photographer: Amanda Gordon/Bloomberg

Olivia Flatto, president of American Friends of Paris Opera & Ballet, Karen Ackman, and William Ackman, CEO, Pershing Square Capital Management LP, attend a benefit for Friends of the High Line. Close

Olivia Flatto, president of American Friends of Paris Opera & Ballet, Karen Ackman, and William Ackman, CEO, Pershing... Read More

Photographer: Paul Kolnik via Bloomberg

The Nutcracker prince in New York City Ballet's "The Nutcracker," a role that might suit the son of a hedge fund manager. Close

The Nutcracker prince in New York City Ballet's "The Nutcracker," a role that might suit the son of a hedge fund manager.

As the year closes, Scene Last Night takes a look at the causes that people in finance tend to cluster around. Today: The Hedge Funder Balletomanes.

“The ballet is a beautiful art form, it’s so sculptural,” John Paulson said after a Dec. 8 performance of “The Nutcracker” at New York City Ballet. Balanchine’s holiday fantasy extravaganza, which the hedge-fund manager took in with his family from orchestra seats, is a favorite. “I’ve seen it so many times here -- you can’t see it enough,” Paulson said.

Naturally the Paulsons help the ballet raise money, as do many families with hedge-fund pedigree. Lisa Falcone, wife of Philip A. Falcone, is on the board of New York City Ballet. William Ackman, of Pershing Square Capital Management, and Kinga Lampert, wife of Edward Lampert of ESL Partners LP, are on the board of American Friends of the Paris Opera & Ballet, whose dance company had a U.S. tour this past summer.

Looking ahead, Paulson’s wife, Jenny, will be a chairman of the School of American Ballet Winter Ball on March 11, 2013. Another chairman will be Diana DiMenna, wife of hedge-fund manager Joe DiMenna, whose daughter Tess was a soldier in “The Nutcracker.”

The pull of the ballet may be the art form itself, or having a child studying ballet. Another is the fun of a ballet party, as dancers double as some of the most chic party guests ever.

In Costume

At the “Nutcracker” family benefit, the dancers stayed in their costumes as they greeted guests on the promenade of the David H. Koch Theater, made magical for the occasion.

Snow-covered Christmas trees surrounded the Elie Nadelman sculptures, tables were decorated with gingerbread houses and Santa stopped by. One of Paulson’s daughters snagged an autograph from Olivia Boisson, a Flower, while Paulson posed for a photograph with Sara Adams, the lead Marzipan Shepherdess.

This event raised $700,000 with leadership from chairmen including Amy Griffin, wife of Blue Ridge Capital LLC’s John Griffin. The Griffins had a son this autumn, named Julian, after John Griffin’s mentor, Tiger Management LLC’s Julian Robertson. Judging from a photograph shown by a beaming dad, this little boy has all the makings of a Nutcracker Prince.

(Amanda Gordon is a writer and photographer for Muse, the arts and leisure section of Bloomberg News. Any opinions expressed are her own.)

Muse highlights include Greg Evans on film, James S. Russell on architecture.

To contact the writer on this story: Amanda Gordon in New York at agordon01@bloomberg.net or on Twitter at @amandagordon

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Manuela Hoelterhoff at mhoelterhoff@bloomberg.net.

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