Learning to dip

Dallas Symphony debutantes start Presentation Ball journey with weekend of parties

Dallas Symphony debs start Presentation Ball journey with parties

Katie Kottwitz, Margaret Smith, Sara Tacito, Georgia Hallam
Katie Kottwitz, Margaret Smith, Sara Tacito, Georgia Hallam Photo by Gittings
 Karen, Matthew, Isabella, Kevin Cox
 Karen, Matthew, Isabella, and Kevin Cox Photo by Gittings
DSOL debutantes 2019
All the debs. Photo by Gittings
Julia Tribolet, Spencer Hardin
Julia Tribolet, Spencer Hardin Photo by Gittings
Bret, Annalea, Katie Pedigo
Bret, Annalea, and Katie Pedigo Photo by Gittings
Kim Noltemy and James Leffler
Kim Noltemy, James Leffler Photo by Gittings
Dan, Audrey, Heidi Berner
Dan, Audrey, and Heidi Berner Photo by Gittings
Amanda, Beth, Brint Ryan
Amanda, Beth, and Brint Ryan Photo by Gittings
Lisa, Savannah, Kenny Troutt
Lisa, Savannah, and Kenny Troutt Photo by Gittings
Melissa Lewis, Crawford Brock, Kim Brannon
Melissa Lewis, Crawford Brock, Kim Brannon Photo by Gittings
John Gilmore and Linda Burk
John Gilmore, Linda Burk Photo by Gittings
 Susan and Maddy Duvall
Susan Duvall, Maddy Duvall Photo by Gittings
Katie Kottwitz, Margaret Smith, Sara Tacito, Georgia Hallam
 Karen, Matthew, Isabella, Kevin Cox
DSOL debutantes 2019
Julia Tribolet, Spencer Hardin
Bret, Annalea, Katie Pedigo
Kim Noltemy and James Leffler
Dan, Audrey, Heidi Berner
Amanda, Beth, Brint Ryan
Lisa, Savannah, Kenny Troutt
Melissa Lewis, Crawford Brock, Kim Brannon
John Gilmore and Linda Burk
 Susan and Maddy Duvall

With the start of June came the beginning of the 2019-2020 Dallas Symphony Orchestra League debutante season. The DSOL introduced the new debs during Announcement Weekend festivities, June 6-8, in Dallas.

It all began with the announcement party at Stanley Korshak on the evening of June 6. The next day, Stanley Korshak hosted a couture gown show featuring the gowns of designer Mackenzie Brittingham. And on June 8, a brunch and gown show took place at Neiman Marcus.

Dr. Linda Burk and Dr. James Gilmore were announced as the honorary chairs for the 2020 Presentation Ball. They are longtime supporters of the DSO, and their daughters, Laura and Jane Gilmore, are former debutantes, and their son, John Gilmore, served as an honor guard.

Serving as this year's Presentation Ball chair is Melissa Lewis, and DSOL president is Kim Brannon. Lewis' daughter Olivia made her debut in 2015.

“I am so honored to be guiding these wonderful young women through the 2020 debutante season,” Lewis told the audience. “Over the next nine months, our debutantes and their families will enjoy many wonderful events and will make memories that will last a lifetime. They will make new friends and have one-of-a-kind experiences, all while supporting the outstanding education and outreach programs of the Dallas Symphony Orchestra.”

In attendance throughout the weekend were many parents of the debs and patrons of DSOL, including Tincy Miller, Lisa and Kenny Troutt, Amanda and Brint Ryan, Sarah Jo and Mark Hardin, Kim Noltemy, James Leffler, and Lisa Loy Laughlin.

One special attendee was Susan Averitt Duvall, who was a debutante at the inaugural ball held in 1987 and whose daughter Madelyn will be making her debut this season. (Susan's brother Mark Averitt was a member of the honor guard, and brother Don Averitt worked behind the scenes and graciously greeted the guests at that first ball.)

Roger Gault formally announced the debutantes, and Heather Moore and Kendra Averitt coached the debs and the honor guard in the staging area.

The 2019-2020 debutantes are:

  • Emily Baschab
  • Audrey Berner
  • Isabella Cox
  • Grace Crenshaw
  • Gracie Davis
  • Maddy Duvall
  • Maddie Esping
  • Eleanor Gambrell
  • Georgia Hallam
  • Hunter Hart
  • Kate Jones
  • Izzy Keene
  • Ellie King
  • Katie Kottwitz
  • Mary Kumpf
  • Avery Levoyer
  • Catherine Magee
  • Audrey Magnuson
  • Allie McWhorter
  • Shelby Nelson
  • Grace Olson
  • Annalea Pedigo
  • Beth Ryan
  • Kendell Sigel
  • Margaret Smith
  • Campbell Swango
  • Sara Tacito
  • Julia Tribolet
  • Savannah Troutt
  • Brynn Weakley
  • Genny Wood

The season will culminate, of course, with the 34th Presentation Ball, which will take place February 8, 2020.

The Presentation Ball is the largest fundraiser for the DSOL. More than $11 million has been raised for the Dallas Symphony Orchestra through the annual event.