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The San Francisco Opera Ball 2013: The Party of All Things Good, With a Healthy Splash of Evil

September 13, 2013
Kirsty Gumina

This year’s opening night gala for the San Francisco Opera’s 91st Season was a Bay Area cultural soiree for the books. Internationally-renowned event designer, Colin Cowie, was selected by the Opera Guild to visually bring to life The Opera Ball 2013: The Garden of Good and Evil with his acclaimed eye for design.

As stilt walkers clad in greenery and leaves meandered among guests outfitted in ball gowns and tuxedos, audible bird chirping and ambient green lighting completed the experience for City Hall’s nighttime “garden party.” Cowie’s design featured whimsically eerie, yet mysteriously beautiful, crystal-draped and black feather-topped chandelier centerpieces that towered over the green velvet and copper sequin dinner tables. Attendees enjoyed dishes of Chilled Three Green Pea Soup with Apple and Smoked Trout and Grilled Grass-Fed Lamb Chops with Monterey Fog Artichoke-Potato Gratin and Late Summer Squash. Rounding out the banquet, White and Dark Chocolate Skulls filled with a Berry Parfait and Madagascar Vanilla Anglaise pleased both the good and the slightly evil alike at this enigmatic garden fete. After dinner, guests enjoyed a glittering opening night performance of Arrigo Boito’s Mephistopheles conducted by Music Director Nicola Luisotti. After the performance, the opera-goers followed fire dancers back to City Hall for the slightly more sinister after-party, where we tempted guests with bountiful savory stations, decadent hand-rolled chocolate truffles and cocktails as guests danced the night away.

While the grandness of the Opera’s opening night ball is always impressive, it is most important to note the driving cause: the Opera Guild takes all proceeds from ticket sales and funnels them into arts education for Northern California students in over 230 schools. Between this great mission and the added benefit of a great party, it is no wonder the Opera Ball sells out so fast!

Prior to the gala, The Avant Gardist, a fashion blog based out of San Francisco, got some inside information from the Opera Guild and the design skinny from Mr. Cowie himself. The article also referenced McCalls for our impending catering services. To learn what Mr. Cowie had to say about the then-upcoming Opera Ball and to see our mention, check out the article by Cynthia Riddell here: http://theavant-gardist.com/stay-tuned-with-colin-cowie/

To see photos and to read more about the Opera Ball, take a look at this article from SFGate: http://www.sfgate.com/performance/article/Opera-gala-s-glittering-Garden-of-Good-and-Evil-4797318.php

To find out more about the Opera, its performances and its programs, please visit their website:
http://sfopera.com/Home.aspx

Be sure to check out our Facebook page next week to see some behind the scenes photos of the Opera Ball as well as the Symphony Gala!