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A New Year’s Celebration Sparkles with Music, Dancing, and a Dazzling Backdrop

Ars Lyrica rings in the New Year with Baroque Razzle-Dazzle and a view of the fiery Houston skyline 

Photo credit: Pin Lim

General Editor: Margaret MacMillan

Publisher: Connie Kwan-Wong

The Celebration

Ars Lyrica Houston’s (ALH) supporters toasted 2019 with the ensemble’s annual New Year’s Eve gala and concert. The glittering evening was chaired by Michelle Stair and Carlos Sierra.

The Story

Revelers began the night with a seated dinner at the newly renovated Diana American Grill, which was followed by the splendid Baroque Razzle-Dazzle at Zilkha Hall in the Hobby Center for the Performing Arts. The discerning crowd was treated to the first and third Brandenburg Concertos, by Bach; Overture-Suite in C, by Telemann; and Violin Concerto in G Minor, by Brescianello, which were performed by ALH core instrumentalists and featured acclaimed violinist Adam LaMotte. The moment the concert ended, the guests were on their feet expressing their pleasure with a standing ovation.

After the bravura performance, participants moved to the Founders Club in the Hobby Center for the Performing Arts. Here they enjoyed champagne and sweet and savory bites catered by Diana American Grill and were entertained by the Chicago-style performance of soprano Dominique McCormick and pianist Keith Weber. The evening continued with dancing on the checker-board floor to the music of DJ Cory Frederick and the lighting of Catalyst Design.

The Moments

When the moment everyone was waiting for arrived, the New Year was welcomed with a shower of ticker tape. At the same time, the Houston skyline ignited with stunning fireworks providing the party-goers with one of the best backdrops in the city. Guests then raised their champagne glasses for a toast to 2019 and to join in the singing of “Auld Lang Syne.” 

Houstonia magazine and CKW LUXE Magazine, were the media sponsors of the gala, which benefitted ALH.

Guests: Matthew Dirst, Michelle Stair and Carlos Sierra, Julie and John Cogan, Jano and John Kelley, Kathryn and Brendan Godfrey, John Lemen, Richard and Eleanor Viebig, and Ed and Janet Hess. 

About Ars Lyrica Houston

Founded in 1998 by harpsichordist and conductor Matthew Dirst, Ars Lyrica Houston (ALH) presents a diverse array of music from the 17th and 18th centuries on period instruments. Its local subscription series, according to the Houston Chronicle, “sets the agenda” for early music in Houston. The company also appears regularly at major festivals and conferences. ALH’s distinctive programming favors Baroque dramatic and chamber works, and its pioneering efforts have won international acclaim.

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