Chefs, musicians, friends rally for Feel The Love Elise benefit


For months, Elise Roth Tedeschi‘s nearly 2,000 Facebook friends have been closely monitoring her status updates as the beloved Atlanta publicist battles pancreatic cancer. But this month,  the details of Tedeschi’s scary prognosis — she was diagnosed with Stage Three pancreatic cancer in January — were made public for the first time as friends organize a June 29 benefit, Feel The Love Elise, at the Hard Rock Cafe downtown. Elise, 43, the regional marketing manager for Hard Rock Cafe and husband Patrick Tedeschi are the parents are of Jake, 8, and Ryan, 6.

Over the years repping restaurants, including Bacchanalia, Quinones at Bacchanalia, Floataway Cafe, The Oceanaire Room, Murphy’s, Pura Vida Tapas, Canoe and chef clients, including Richard Blais and Anne Quatrano and Clifford Harrison, Tedeschi has built a reputation as one of the most admired public relations experts in the city. But even with insurance, Tedeschi’s aggressive cancer treatment, including rounds of chemotherapy, tests and radiation, has created a mountain of debt for the young family.

Atlanta publicists Toren Anderson of Toren Anderson, Inc., Kelly Norris of The Reynolds Group, Tara Murphy of 360 Media and Jill Caramella of Crafted by Jill have joined forces to organize Feel the Love Elise, a special night of music, fellowship, healing and giving. And the love is pouring in fast too, in the form of auction items, including a donated dinner for 18 prepared by Quatrano and Harrison in the private dining room at Bacchanalia paired with wines from Harrison’s private wine cellar, a chef’s table for four at Local Three prepared by chef Chris Hall, two VIP tickets to this fall’s Taste of Atlanta and  a table for six at any Live Nation show this summer at Chastain. The donations continue to roll in around the clock. Bands booked to perform at Feel the Love Elise include: Aidan Cares, Thade Cole, Paul Roub, Jordan Hornaday, Oscar Melis, Your Uncle Henry and The Cumberland Collective.

Despite enduring 12 rounds of chemo (she is hoping that Thursday’s round was her final one) that leave her so weak her husband has to carry her upstairs, Elise continues to share her story on Facebook with friends. On Wednesday she posted: “How is it that I am happier in my life than I have ever been and going through this cancer thing! I am just so overwhelmed by all the support that I have gotten from family, friends and complete strangers! Thank you from the bottom of my heart. I am just so blessed and really looking forward to seeing everyone at the benefit next Friday, June 29! Game face is on! Ready to kick cancer’s ass! As I have always said, cancer picked the wrong girl to mess with!”

To purchase tickets, make a auction donation or find out how you can help, go to the benefit’s official website or Facebook page.