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Singing gala brings surprises and hilarious fun: This is no ordinary, boring fundraiser

Singing gala brings surprises, hilarious fun: No ordinary fundraiser

Lucia Cordua, from left, Catherine Flaitz, Vivian Wise and Carolyn Farb at the Bering Omega's Sing for Hope Event October 2014
Lucia Cordua, from left, Catherine Flaitz, Vivian Wise and Carolyn Farb. Photo by © Kim Coffman
Todd Fiscus, from left, Ceron and Fady Armanious at the Bering Omega's Sing for Hope Event October 2014
Todd Fiscus, from left, Cerón and Fady Armanious. Photo by © Kim Coffman
Scott Miller, from left, David Reed, Ann Reed and Troy Brooks at the Bering Omega's Sing for Hope Event October 2014
Scott Miller, from left, David and Ann Reed and Troy Brooks. Photo by © Kim Coffman
Peter Remington and Karen Deguerin at the Bering Omega's Sing for Hope Event October 2014
Peter Remington and Karen Deguerin. Photo by © Kim Coffman
Minnette and Peter Boesel at the Bering Omega's Sing for Hope Event October 2014
Minnette and Peter Boesel. Photo by © Kim Coffman
John Evatz and Carolyn Farb at the Bering Omega's Sing for Hope Event October 2014
John Evatz and Carolyn Farb. Photo by © Kim Coffman
Ernie Manouse, from left, Michael Cordua and Jerry Jaggers at the Bering Omega's Sing for Hope Event October 2014
Ernie Manouse, from left, Michael Cordua and Jerry Jaggers. Photo by © Kim Coffman
Carlos Meltzer, from left, Lucia Cordua and Nick Espinosa at the Bering Omega's Sing for Hope Event October 2014.
Carlos Meltzer, from left, Lucia Cordua and Nick Espinosa. Photo by © Kim Coffman
Camille Zamora, from left, Catherine Flaitz and Geri Murgola at the Bering Omega's Sing for Hope Event October 2014
Camille Zamora, from left, Catherine Flaitz and Geri Murgola. Photo by © Kim Coffman
Alfredo Scaroina, from left, Carolyn Farb, Lucia Cordua and Ken Christie at the Bering Omega's Sing for Hope Event October 2014
Alfredo Scaroina, from left, Carolyn Farb, Lucia Cordua and Ken Christie. Photo by © Kim Coffman
Camille Zamora, from left, Michelle Baden, Carolyn Farb, Lucia Cordua, Michael Cordua, David Cordua, Vivian Wise, Sergio Morales, Shannon Hall, Marcus Sloane and Taft McWhorter at the Bering Omega's Sing for Hope Event October 2014
Camille Zamora, from left, Michelle Baden, Carolyn Farb, Lucia and Michael Cordua, David Cordua, Vivian Wise, Sergio Morales, Shannon Hall, Marcus Sloane and Taft McWhorter Photo by © Kim Coffman
Camille Zamora singing with the High School for Performing & Visual Arts Chorale at the Bering Omega's Sing for Hope Event October 2014
Camille Zamora singing with the High School for Performing & Visual Arts Chorale. Photo by © Kim Coffman
Michelle Baden, at the Bering Omega's Sing for Hope Event October 2014
Michelle Baden. Photo by © Kim Coffman
Ernie Manouse at the Bering Omega's Sing for Hope Event October 2014
Ernie Manouse. Photo by © Kim Coffman
Lucia Cordua, from left, Catherine Flaitz, Vivian Wise and Carolyn Farb at the Bering Omega's Sing for Hope Event October 2014
Todd Fiscus, from left, Ceron and Fady Armanious at the Bering Omega's Sing for Hope Event October 2014
Scott Miller, from left, David Reed, Ann Reed and Troy Brooks at the Bering Omega's Sing for Hope Event October 2014
Peter Remington and Karen Deguerin at the Bering Omega's Sing for Hope Event October 2014
Minnette and Peter Boesel at the Bering Omega's Sing for Hope Event October 2014
John Evatz and Carolyn Farb at the Bering Omega's Sing for Hope Event October 2014
Ernie Manouse, from left, Michael Cordua and Jerry Jaggers at the Bering Omega's Sing for Hope Event October 2014
Carlos Meltzer, from left, Lucia Cordua and Nick Espinosa at the Bering Omega's Sing for Hope Event October 2014.
Camille Zamora, from left, Catherine Flaitz and Geri Murgola at the Bering Omega's Sing for Hope Event October 2014
Alfredo Scaroina, from left, Carolyn Farb, Lucia Cordua and Ken Christie at the Bering Omega's Sing for Hope Event October 2014
Camille Zamora, from left, Michelle Baden, Carolyn Farb, Lucia Cordua, Michael Cordua, David Cordua, Vivian Wise, Sergio Morales, Shannon Hall, Marcus Sloane and Taft McWhorter at the Bering Omega's Sing for Hope Event October 2014
Camille Zamora singing with the High School for Performing & Visual Arts Chorale at the Bering Omega's Sing for Hope Event October 2014
Michelle Baden, at the Bering Omega's Sing for Hope Event October 2014
Ernie Manouse at the Bering Omega's Sing for Hope Event October 2014

While some would say that 20 years of the same thing is enough, what engenders generous party-goers to have much affection for Bering Omega Community Service's "Sing for Hope" three-act musicale are the tuneful surprises that always rouse a deluge of applause.

Soprano Camille Zamora first created the concert fundraiser to honor her dear friend Frank Logan, an HIV-positive musician who received compassionate care at Omega House hospice during his last days. This 20th anniversary gala, themed "Destination Dublin," welcomed more than 350 guests to the Hobby Center for the Performing Arts for a melange of timeless classical arias and Broadway selections that made audiences smile from ear to ear.

Particularly when Jennifer Walsey serenaded artist liaison Brian O'Leary with a hilarious interpretation of "If I Weren't Married . . . " It was even more special for those who know that O'Leary is charmingly gay.

Chaired by restaurateur family Michael, Lucia and David Cordúa, the evening honored Carolyn Farb, whose passion-fueled speech about the early days of the care center, plus the gusto of emcee Ernie Manouse of Houston Public Media, helped collect an additional $25,000 during an appeal for funds. Geri Murgola and Dr. Catherine Flaitz were awarded with the Camille Zamora Award for their service to Bering Omega's hospice and dental clinic. United Airlines was also recognized for its support of the organization's community programs.

Once the introductory dinner and performance were over, it was time for after-party chairs Vivian Wise, Sergio Morales, Shannon Hall and Marcus Sloan to scheme a quick decor change for "Divine Descent," a rowdy dance fete in which young professionals joined in the theater lobby — all and all bringing in $190,000.

In the crowd were Caroline Starry LeBlanc and Jared LeBlanc, Minnette and Peter Boesel, Ken Christie, Carlos Meltzer and Nick Espinosa, Jerry Jaggers, John Evatz, Michelle Baden, Scott Miller, David Reed, board president Ann Reed and Troy Brooks.