Shelby's Social Diary
Was it pyramid power or a Midas touch that catapulted the Museum Ball to a KingTut windfall?
It was a swell crowd that danced in the shadow of the pyramids Saturday night as the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston raised a pharaoh's ransom in greenbacks at the Grand Gala Ball, this year themed an "Egyptian Fantasy" in honor of the upcoming King Tut exhibition.
While Cleopatras preened in the spotlight and soaring palm trees swayed in the flow of the air-conditioning in the museum's Law building, a heavy-hitter contingent totalling 450 partied against a backdrop of the iconic Egyptian pyramids and the Temple of Luxor, presented in practically life-sized projections.
Before Cornelia and Meredith Long and Isabel and Wallace Wilson could finish those massive desserts, the dinner flow was gleefully interrupted by a Steve Martin impersonator, who led the gathering in a rendition of "Walk Like an Egyptian."
In the midst of the glorious setting stood ball chairs Michelle and Frank Hevrdejs, who beamed over the success of the evening that raised more than $1.4 million, not far from the museum ball's all-time high proceeds of $1.7 million.
In his brief remarks, Frank applauded both Michelle and Frances Marzio for their prowess at fundraising and fun-raising. "They're both great women," he said privately.
When guests such as Lynn Wyatt, Tina and Joe Pine and Courtney and Christopher Sarofim sat down for dinner, they were taken by the elaborate table settings. Jackson Hicks, celebrating 30 years of party perfection via Jackson & Co., allowed that the stunning Cartier-like plates in navy blue with gold trim and the St. Louis crystal-like wine glasses had been ordered from across the country just for this evening.
And in a special nod to the theme, Jackson & Co. served chocolate pyramid desserts, each filled with a surprise — an oversized faux jewel.
Before Cornelia and Meredith Long and Isabel and Wallace Wilson could finish those massive desserts, the dinner flow was gleefully interrupted by a Steve Martin impersonator, who led the gathering in a rendition of "Walk Like an Egyptian." The Sensations show band from LA provided the dance music that followed.
Among the glittering crowd were Shahla and Hushang Ansary, Janice and Bob McNair, Linda and Dr. Walter McReynolds, Pat Breen, Carol and Mike Linn, Wayne Smith, Diane Lokey Farb, Sima and Masoud Ladjevardian, Tricia and Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst, Nancy and Rich Kinder, Anny Whyte and Steve Adger, Cynthia and Tony Petrello, Sarah and Bill Morgan, Sharyn and Jim Weaver.
The one individual missing on this night was the late Peter Marzio, the much-loved and ever-charming museum director who passed away last December. His absence was unspoken but nevertheless felt.
Who wore what to the MFAH Grand Gala Ball? Look for a photo essay on all the fabulous designer gowns, with loads of photos, in CultureMap this week.