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Asia Society Texas Center:

Tiger Ball 2018: Celebrating the Diversity of Asia


PHOTO CREDITS:  by Daniel Ortiz and Jenny Antill

On March 3, 2018 the Asia Society Texas Center welcomed over 600 guests to Tiger Ball 2018: Celebrating the Diversity of Asia. Longtime Asia Society advocates Sylvia and Gordon Quan were the lavish evening’s honorees. Co-chairs, Kathy and Glen Gondo; Helene and Stephen Le; and Sultana and Moez Mangalji were also honored, as were honorary chairs, the Honorable Theresa Chang and Dr. Peter Chang.

Upon arrival, guests, wearing black tie and national dress, were greeted by several wishing trees (a tradition throughout Asia) adorned with hot pink and red ribbons lining Southmore Blvd. For their further enjoyment, guests were treated to cocktails and Chinese performances by Dance of Asian America in the Chevron Gala Pavilion. The large tent was lavishly decorated in a Taj Mahal theme with Moorish gates, lanterns, rugs, ottomans, and lounging poofs. To their great delight, guests were led in a procession by Dance of Asian America to the Grand Hall of the Asia Society Texas Center for dinner.

The sumptuous Pan-Asian dinner was served throughout the remarkable structure, which was designed by Yoshio Taniguchi and decorated to complement the occasion. Floral choices, representing a wide variety of Asian and non-Asian origins, played a key role in this year’s décor. They included peonies, hydrangea, cherry blossoms, manzanita trees, roses, tulips, azaleas, orchids, forsythia, Pieris japonica, iris, prunus, dogwood, and phlox. Tables were arrayed throughout the Fayez Sarofim Grand Hall, the North Gallery, the café, the Brown Foundation Performing Arts Theater, the Water Garden Terrace, and the Edward Rudge Allen III Education Center. 

Returning to the Chevron Gala Pavilion after dinner, guests enjoyed an array of decadent Pan-Asian desserts as well as an impromptu hula lesson given by dancers from the Ka Pā Hula Nā Pua O Kamali’i Polynesian dance ensemble. 

The evening’s one-of-a-kind big board auction offered participants a wide variety of singular experiences to bid on. They included: the opportunity to throw the first pitch at an Astros game; a cultural tour of NYC with luxury accommodations, breakfast at Tiffany & Co., and an exclusive tour of the Rockefeller collection at Asia Society New York; four seats in the New York Yankees Legends suite; dinner for 10 with Rice University president, Dr. David W. Leebron, and first lady, Y. Ping Sun, in their 1920s mansion; exquisite jewelry by Tiffany & Co. and Mikimoto; a curated tour of Toronto with first-class airfare; a progressive dinner for six at Tony’s, Vallone’s, and Ciao Bello; a sushi and sashimi party for 30 guests hosted by the Consulate-General of Japan; and first-class international United airfare for two.

This year’s Tiger Ball was made possible by a full complement of dedicated professionals. They included Rebekah Johnson of Bergner & Johnson, who created the flawless décor; Derek Widis of SPF Event Resources, who provided the magnificent tent; Gary Mercer and Jim Ewing of City Kitchen, who masterfully catered the event; DJ Senega of Karma DJs, who kept the crowd happy; and Bright Star Productions, who provided the perfect lighting.

The proceeds from the evening, which support Asia Society Texas Center’s 150 plus public programs annually, surpassed the fundraising goal by topping $1.2 million. Next year’s Tiger Ball is scheduled for Friday, March 1, 2019 and will honor Phoebe and Bobby Tudor.

Guests: His Highness The Maharaja Gaj Singh II of Marwar-Jodhpur and his daughter, Princess Shivranjani Rajye; Mayor Sylvester Turner; Phoebe and Bobby Tudor; Nancy Allen; Joni Baird; Rice University president, Dr. David W. Leebron, and first lady, Y. Ping Sun; Chinhui Juhn and Eddie Allen; Isla and Tommy Reckling; Andrea and Bill White; Alex and Astley Blair; and Lily and Charles Foster. Many members of the consular corps were also in attendance. 

About Asia Society Texas Center

With 12 locations throughout the world, Asia Society is the leading educational organization promoting mutual understanding and strengthening partnerships among the peoples, leaders, and institutions of Asia and the West. Asia Society Texas Center executes the global mission with a local focus, enriching and engaging the vast diversity of Houston through innovative relevant programs in arts and culture, business and policy, education, and community outreach.

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