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Shelby's Social Diary

Young professionals mambo the night away: This Houston Symphony party is a Latin swing

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Houston Symphony YPB West Side Story event, March 2013, Michelle Kobelan, Kristin Kruse and Katie Chachere
Michelle Kobelan, from left, Kristin Kruse and Katie Chachere at the Houston Symphony's Young Professionals Backstage (YPB) party. Photo by © Chinh Phan/CatchLightGroup.com
Houston Symphony YPB West Side Story event, March 2013, Jorge Montero teaching the guys some dance moves
Jorge Montero teaching the guys some dance moves at the Houston Symphony's Young Professionals Backstage party. Photo by © Chinh Phan/CatchLightGroup.com
Houston Symphony YPB West Side Story event, March 2013, Jim Vesterman, Christina Hanson, Tony Prisk, Mark Hanson
Jim Vesterman, from left, Christina Hanson, Tony Prisk and Mark Hanson at the Houston Symphony YPB party. Photo by © Chinh Phan/CatchLightGroup.com
Houston Symphony YPB West Side Story event, March 2013, Ken Heil, Bethany McCade
Ken Heil and Bethany McCade at the Houston Symphony YPB party. Photo by © Chinh Phan/CatchLightGroup.com
Houston Symphony YPB West Side Story event, March 2013, Sonia Jupiter and Jorge Montero
Sonia Jupiter and Jorge Montero sharing a moment at the Houston Symphony's Young Professionals Backstage (YPB) party. Photo by © Chinh Phan/CatchLightGroup.com
Houston Symphony YPB West Side Story event, March 2013, Matthew Strauss, Debi Levi-Strauss
Matthew Strauss and Debi Levi-Strauss at the Houston Symphony YPB party. Photo by © Chinh Phan/CatchLightGroup.com
Houston Symphony YPB West Side Story event, March 2013, Allison Conlan, Edet Okon
Allison Conlan and Edet at the Houston Symphony YPB party.Okon Photo by © Chinh Phan/CatchLightGroup.com
Houston Symphony YPB West Side Story event, March 2013, Lesley Sabol, Steven Reineke
Lesley Sabol and Steven at the Houston Symphony YPB party.Reineke Photo by © Chinh Phan/CatchLightGroup.com
Houston Symphony YPB West Side Story event, March 2013, Kevin Gilbert, Melissa Seuffert
Kevin Gilbert and Melissa at the Houston Symphony YPB party.Seuffert Photo by © Chinh Phan/CatchLightGroup.com
Houston Symphony YPB West Side Story event, March 2013, Clair Studdard
Clair Studdard dances at the Houston Symphony YPB party. Photo by © Chinh Phan/CatchLightGroup.com
Houston Symphony YPB West Side Story event, March 2013, Jonathan Cohen, Stefanie Henriquez
Jonathan Cohen and Stefanie at the Houston Symphony YPB party.Henriquez Photo by © Chinh Phan/CatchLightGroup.com
Houston Symphony YPB West Side Story event, March 2013, Adam VanDoren, Gira Desai
Adam VanDoren and Gira at the Houston Symphony YPB party.Desai Photo by © Chinh Phan/CatchLightGroup.com
Houston Symphony YPB West Side Story event, March 2013, Rebecca Garfield and Kiju Joh
Rebecca Garfield, left, and Kiju Joh at the Houston Symphony YPB party. Photo by © Chinh Phan/CatchLightGroup.com
Houston Symphony YPB West Side Story event, March 2013, Michelle Kobelan, Kristin Kruse and Katie Chachere
Houston Symphony YPB West Side Story event, March 2013, Jorge Montero teaching the guys some dance moves
Houston Symphony YPB West Side Story event, March 2013, Jim Vesterman, Christina Hanson, Tony Prisk, Mark Hanson
Houston Symphony YPB West Side Story event, March 2013, Ken Heil, Bethany McCade
Houston Symphony YPB West Side Story event, March 2013, Sonia Jupiter and Jorge Montero
Houston Symphony YPB West Side Story event, March 2013, Matthew Strauss, Debi Levi-Strauss
Houston Symphony YPB West Side Story event, March 2013, Allison Conlan, Edet Okon
Houston Symphony YPB West Side Story event, March 2013, Lesley Sabol, Steven Reineke
Houston Symphony YPB West Side Story event, March 2013, Kevin Gilbert, Melissa Seuffert
Houston Symphony YPB West Side Story event, March 2013, Clair Studdard
Houston Symphony YPB West Side Story event, March 2013, Jonathan Cohen, Stefanie Henriquez
Houston Symphony YPB West Side Story event, March 2013, Adam VanDoren, Gira Desai
Houston Symphony YPB West Side Story event, March 2013, Rebecca Garfield and Kiju Joh

The Houston Symphony Young Professionals Backstage were front and center for the symphony's performance of the West Side Story score in Jones Hall while the newly-remastered film was shown in high definition. The multi-sensory West Side Story immersion continued even after the music stopped.

 They shot short videos that were then turned into animated photo flip books, which doubled as party favors. 

Inspired by the Leonard Bernstein score, more than 100 YPs rocked their way down Texas Avenue to the Rice Lofts where they gathered in the Empire Room for the Latin-music themed after party. Specialty cocktails such as "Tony" (bourbon and Coke) and "Maria" (vodka and cranberry juice) and late-night bites from Sambuca fueled the energy that kept this scene going into the wee hours.

The 20- and 30-something crowd grooved with Latin-style swing and salsa dance lessons led by Sonia Jupiter and Jorge Montero of Sonia’s World of Dance. Inspired by the movie, they performed for Anchor Entertainment’s cameras as they shot short videos that were then turned into animated photo flip books, which doubled as party favors.

The late-night revelers included guest conductor Steven Reineke, Houston Symphony CEO Mark Hanson and wife Christina, Melissa Seuffert, Kevin Gilbert, Michelle Kobelan, Kristin Kruse, Katie Chachere, Allison Lott, Adam Van Doren and Gira Desai. Houston Symphony musicians joining the fun included Anthony Prisk, Kiju Joh, Rebecca Powell Garfield, Matthew Strauss, Adam Dinitz and Daniel Strba.

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