Champagne glasses were raised in jubilant toasts when Houston Symphony CEO Mark Hanson unveiled particulars of the 2014 symphony ball, which will be held in May rather than March, as long-standing tradition dictates, in order to cap off the symphony's centennial season. The details were unveiled when Houston Symphony Centennial Ball chairs Cora Sue and Harry Mach and Joella and Steve Mach hosted the launch party in the senior Mach's elegant River Oaks home.
Addressing the cocktail buffet crowd, Hanson allowed that the gala will be held in Jones Hall and include a symphony performance, under direction of Steven Reineke, with special guest appearance by Glee's Matthew Morrison.
Rather than move to a hotel or other party venue for the celebratory dinner following the concert, guests will move the Jones Hall lobby for cocktails and bidding on auction items, while The Events Co. team transforms the theater into a party space, thanks to terraced platforms, with seats for 600 dinner/dance guests. Jackson and Co. will provide the dinner and the Richard Brown Orchestra will provide the dance tunes.
Taking bows as honorees on the glamorous evening will be Marie Taylor Bosarge, Phoebe and Bobby Tudor, Margaret Alkek Williams, Baker Botts, L.L.P. and ExxonMobil. In addition, a new award, created in honor of Symphony chairman emeritus Mike Stude — the Mike Stude Award for Enduring Artistic Vision — will be presented to five foundations that have cumulatively over the years provided more than $100 million for the symphony.
Joining in the toasts and savoring the Jackson and Co. buffet were guests including Sidney and Don Faust, Carmen and Butch Mach, Katie Flaherty, Ting and John Bresnahan, Lindley and Jason Arnoldy, Joni Baird, Diane and Henry Gendel, Susan and Dick Hansen, Barbara and Ulyesse LeGrange, Tara and David Wuthrich and Carolyn and Mike Mann.