Walk like an Egyptian
MFAH patrons partied with the pharaohs in a first-look at the blockbuster KingTut exhibition
One hour just wasn't long enough Wednesday night for a coterie of well-heeled supporters to sate their appetites for the Museum of Fine Arts, Houston's blockbuster exhibitionTutankhamun: The Golden King and the Great Pharaohs. As they hungered for more time with the pharaonic riches, many declared that they would be back.
More time was surely needed to study the legendary treasures of King Tut and of his royal relatives, a dazzling array of 122 items from the Golden Age of the Pharaohs.
In fact, interest in the exhibition ran so high that more than 220 guests RSVP'd for the donor dinner and preview of the exhibition, which opens to the public on Sunday.
Receiving kudos for the stunning Houston presentation of the exhibition was Frances Marzio, MFAH curator of antiquities and in-home coordinator of the vast traveling collection.
Mingling in the heavy-hitter crowd were leaders of Apache Corp. which made the Houston stop possible. The oil and gas exploration company is the largest United States investor in Egypt and sponsorship of the Houston stopover was a natural. Rod Eichler, Apache president and COO, had lived in Egypt for 12 years. He was joined by Bob Dye, senior VP of global communications and corporate affairs, and Bill Mintz, director of public affairs, in making the Apache sponsorship a reality.
Representing the national cultural sponsor of the exhibition, Northern Trust, was a familiar figure in the charitable and community leadership arena — Jeff Early, president of South Texas Northern Trust.
Even as word was whispered through the dinner crowd that announcement of a new museum director to replace the late Peter Marzio was fast approaching, interim director Gwen Goffeheld the course with her respected adroitness and leadership.
Sitting down to a tasteful dinner from City Kitchen were many notables including Egyptian Consul General Alaa Issa and his wife Miral Omar, MFAH board chair Cornelia Long and husband Meredith, Nancy and Rich Kinder, Janice and Bob McNair, Franci and Jim Crane, Frank Hevrdejs, Macey and Harry Reasoner, Ed Eubanks, Judy and Charles Tate, Dr. Steve Hamilton and Tom LeCloux, Beth Madison, Joanna and Rusty Wortham and too many more to name.
And in a final playful note to the evening, Frances Marzio concluded her more serious remarks on the exhibition saying, "We can all learn a lesson from the pharaohs. You can't take it with you and, if you try, someone will dig it up."