IT WAS A big night for the Houston Symphony. Not only was it the annual Opening Night Concert and Gala, chaired this year by Susan and Dennis Carlyle, but it was also the official first performance of Juraj Valčuha as the symphony’s 16th music director.
And the music was big. The concert presentation of Verdi Requiem drew on the full orchestra, guest opera stars including Houston’s Ana María Martínez and others from around the world, and a large 100+-person choir.
After dinner, per Symphony custom, patrons including Margaret Alkek Williams, Bobby and Phoebe Tudor, and Betty and Jess Tutor piled onto luxury buses and made their way to the grand Corinthian event space nearby for a lavish dinner. “The décor, created by The Events Company, transformed the space with crystal chandeliers and greenery cascading across the balcony,” cooed a rep for the organization. “Tables, covered in green linens, filled the room and were topped with varying high and low floral arrangements in shades of white and green.”
Dinner included salad with shrimp terrine, gremolata-and-breadcrumb-crusted cod, with profiteroles and hazelnut macaroons for dessert. The David Caceres Band played for a lively dancefloor afterward.
The Symphony announced it had raised $540,000 on Opening Night for its education and community-engagement efforts.
Alan and Elizabeth Stein, Bobbie Nau, Marc Grossberg
Alex Blair, Jennifer Roosth, Katherine Warren
Barbara Burger, Dom and Stephanie Beveridge
Betty and Jesse Tutor
Brittany Clark, Mario Gudmundsson
Dee and Lea Hunt
Dennis & Susan Carlyle, John Mangum
James and Kimberly Bell
Houston Symphony Opening Night Gala
John Mangum, Margaret Alkek Williams, Juraj Valčuha
Robert and Joan Duff
Scott and Geraldine Wise
Tony and Frances Buzbee
Yoon Smith, Malaika Mukoro, Heidi Rockecharlie