The Ensemble Theatre’s Celebrity Black Tie Gala jazzed up support for one of the country’s oldest African-American acting troupes.
THE PARTY A charitable crowd gathered at Hilton Americas for The Ensemble Theatre’s annual Celebrity Black Tie Gala. Mayor Sylvester Turner opened ceremonies, while TV anchors Damali Keith and Melanie Lawson emceed. THE SCENE For dinner, more than 400 guests enjoyed a three-course meal that included Cajun-marinated chicken breast with crab-stuffed colossal shrimp over Parmesan risotto, followed by white chocolate lemon chiffon pavé with mango-pineapple salsa for dessert. THE HIGHLIGHTS A special honor was given to David Bray for his 15-plus years of volunteer service as the theater’s photographer, and the night’s silent auction attracted high bids for VIP sporting event tickets, exotic travel packages and more. For the oldest and largest professional African-American theater in the Southwest, the gala helps sustain the $2 million operating budget, which includes six mainstage season productions each season, as well as youth educational initiatives. -Briar Davis