Event Date: September 30, 2021
Location: Wortham Theater Center
No. of Attendees: 200
Money Raised: $250,000
Beneficiary: Houston Ballet
Chairpersons: Jamie and Mark Loveland
Underwriters: Margaret Alkek Wiliams and Leticia Loya
Photography: Wilson Parish
Wortham Theater’s Stage Seamlessly Transforms From Exciting Performances to a Gala Dinner Raising Much-Needed Funds for Houston Ballet’s Return
Houston Ballet’s jubilant return to the stage was worth the 18-month wait, as nearly 200 guests welcomed the company’s grand return to Wortham Theater Center and the opening of the 2021-2022 season. A record-breaking bounty of almost $250,000 for this Ballet Signature event was cheered by chairmen Jamie and Mark Loveland and Houston Ballet Board President Leigh Smith.
Performances on Wortham’s Brown Stage opened the evening with the premiere of Stanton Welch’s In Good Company, followed by a few excerpts requested by Ballet devotees, and ending with a special tribute celebration to recognize Principal Dancer Melody Mennite’s 20th anniversary with the Company.
During a brief respite, the stage curtains closed and guests gathered in the Orchestra for a presentation by Stanton Welch AM, while the magic was happening unobtrusively behind them. The Artistic Director lauded Chairs Jamie and Mark Loveland, as well as underwriters Leticia Loya and Margaret Alkek Williams. Minutes passed, the red curtain was dramatically lifted, and the stage was transformed from the performance into an elegant three-course seated dinner surrounded by beautiful décor.
Our city’s non-profits have seen many challenges during the past few years, from Hurricane Harvey to almost two years of a worldwide pandemic, along with a decline in funds, so it’s exciting to see all the wonderful changes occurring which are giving new life and hope to our city’s economy and organizations. Bravo Houston Ballet! Welcome back! You’ve been missed!
Socially present were: Stanton Welch AM, Jim Nelson, Margaret Alkek Williams, Leticia Loya, Leigh and Reggie Smith, Jesse H. Jones II, Phoebe and Bobby Tudor, Shawn Stephens and Jim Jordan, Deborah and Edward Koehler, Laura and Brannon Robertson, Kent A. Schaffer and Shara Kuy, Stephanie Tsuru, Hallie Vanderhider, Akemi Saitoh, Melza and Ted Barr, Richard Flowers and Angel Rios, Jo and Jim Furr, Martha and Marvin McMurrey, Cabrina Owsley, Lilly Cullen, Lynn Wyatt, Mitchell B. George and Stanley Curtis Jr., Kelley and Stephen Lubanko, Beth Muecke, Allison and Troy Thacker and Ileana and Michael Treviño.