There couldn’t have been a more spectacular setting to announce plans for the Dallas Symphony Orchestra‘s 2012 AT&T Opening Night Gala than the new home of Barbara and Don Daseke, who chaired last year’s gala. The Dasekes’ Addison abode, all tall glass windows and gleaming teak wood, on April 25 attracted about 80 party-goers eager to hear about the September 8 fundraiser at the Meyerson Symphony Center.
Among them were a who’s who of Dallas’s arts aficionados, including Rebecca and Ron Gafford, Margot and Jim Keyes, Joel Allison, Holly Reed of AT&T and Brad Beaird, Pat and Charlie McEvoy, and Barb and Steve Durham. And, the guests weren’t disappointed. Gathered in the Dasekes’ spectacular living room, the back yard’s giant trees looming just beyond, they learned that Jennifer and Coley Clark would chair the September gala, and that renowned cellist Yo-Yo Ma would be the special guest.
David Hyslop, the DSO’s acting CEO, got the ball rolling by taking the microphone and saying, “It’s been a helluva year!” He mentioned nailing down a new contract with the musicians’ union, as well as Jaap van Zweden‘s honor by the Musical America directory, which named Jaap its 2012 Conductor of the Year.
The maestro followed Hyslop to the mic, cautioning modestly that “what we do as a conductor is just bring out what is in the orchestra.” Jaap added wryly about the statuette he received for the honor: “It’s a little statue, and you will be a little disappointed when you see it.” As a result, he and DSO board chairman Blaine Nelson joked, they have had a larger copy of the award made that eventually will go on display at the Meyerson.
Turning to the AT&T gala, van Zweden disclosed that Yo-Yo Ma will play the Schumann concerto and the New World Symphony by Dvorak. Then Jennifer and Coley took center stage. “We are honored,” Coley said. “Of course, I didn’t really know how much work this was going to be!” Later, the couple said the September ball will have a “Parisian” theme, and that Anna-Sophia van Zweden and Katherine Perot Reeves and her husband Eric will co-chair the after-party festivities, “to bring in the young people.”