Come what may
With can-can dancers, corseted coquettes, late-night corny dogs, and top-shelf cabaret cocktails, the Broadway Dallas 2023 Galawas a glittering Moulin Rouge-inspired spectacle from entrance to exit.
The Music Hall at Fair Park’s Crystal Terrace Dining Room was transformed into the world’s most famous pleasure palace for a Parisian-inspired affair on Saturday, April 1.
More than 350 patrons decked out in Moulin Rouge-inspired cocktail attire - satin, feathers, and sequins galore - walked the red carpet, right into a cheeky French boudoir for a cocktail reception. There, they bid on fabulous silent auction items, from gift cards to trips to a highly coveted pair of Taylor Swift concert tickets for the very next night.
Master of ceremonies (actor B.J. Cleveland, portraying the proprietor of Moulin Rouge) corralled patrons into the opulently appointed dining room for the evening’s presentations. Recognized were gala co-chairs Jolie Humphrey and Gail Plummer, along with honorary co-chairs Ambassador Kathryn Walt Hall and Craig Hall. Broadway Dallas president and CEO Ken Novice thanked supporters for “celebrating the magic of Broadway” and helping to spread its spirit to schools and into the community.
Guests enjoyed a sumptuous multicourse meal, starring a surf-and-turf duo of beef and lobster tail, prepared by FGF Catering. The French-inspired fare was paired with HALL wines, and affable servers never let glasses run dry. Flutes of Telmont Reserve Brut Champagne sparkled alongside the iced lemon souffle for dessert.
The dinner program hit its pinnacle when more than 30 students from Guyer High School (which participates annually in Broadway Dallas’ High School Musical Theatre Awards) performed “Paris Holds the Key (to Your Heart)” from the show Anastasia. A live auction and paddle raise followed, helping to push the evening’s fundraising total to $870,000.
Guests hurriedly found their seats inside the hall for a full performance of Moulin Rouge! The Musical, winner of 10 2021 Tony Awards, including Best Musical. Described as "a theatrical celebration of Truth, Beauty, Freedom, and — above all — Love," the wildly energetic show electrified the audience, down to the confetti shower they received at the end.
Gala patrons continued the night at an after-hours fête hosted by co-chairs Emma Coppola and Hannah Hunt. Hungry attendees were treated to crepes from Whisk Crepes Café, parmesan and truffle pommes frites and croque monsieur, and of course, a full flowing bar with specialty themed cocktails. DJ Sheka kept the tunes spinning, and Trap Opera Star Madelyn Brené delighted with a musical performance.
Guests could take home a souvenir of the night via a 3D photo booth or a clever "backside" caricature drawn by Rob Free with The Original Butt Sketch.
As patrons exited for the evening, they could swing by the Fletcher’s Original Corny Dog truck for a late-night snack for the road.
The night was created and coordinated by Hamilton A Sneed of HAS Events, with assistance of many including Jan Strimple Productions.
Spotted in the crowd, having a great time, were Gina and Grant Farmer, Tim and Hannah Hunt, Emma and Edward Coppola, Calvert Collins-Bratton, Vince Bratton, Dawn Mellon, Nerissa von Helpenstill, Gail Good, Helen and Brendan McGuire, Kymberley and Tony Scalia, Leigh Ann and Tom Watson, Venise Stuart, and hundreds more enthusiastic supporters.
The Broadway Dallas gala raises funds for the organization’s educational and community outreach programs, including serving more than 40,000 students and their families each year.
Next year’s gala, co-chaired by John Quattrocchi and Joseph DeMartino, will take place February 2, 2024 and include a full performance of TINA – THE TINA TURNER MUSICAL!.