On September 26th MBAW’s Third Annual Fundraiser & Gala with the Stars Viva Havana! was held downtown at the brand new Tobin Center for the Performing Arts.  Musical Bridges is pleased to report that the gala was a great success, with the goal to raise $150,000 toward Kids to Concerts!

Gala Co-Chairs Dr. Eric Miller and Ms. Reema Shroff worked together with the committee to create a truly fabulous fundraiser and gala.  Dr. Miller’s strong leadership combined with Ms. Shroff’s discerning taste and creativity, along with the hard work and expertise of outstanding Gala Committee members and staff; Dr. Eric Miller, Susan Franklin, Adriana Flores, Dr. Yurii Borshch, Veronika Liskova, Summer Lyons, Dr. Stan Zebrowski, Guillermo Hoyos, Anya Grokhovski, Suhail Arastu, Diana Tatu and James Sanders all made this evening of Cuban Cuisine, Sultry Salsa and Cuba Libres a night to remember!

The night began as Cohiba & Mojito Level Sponsors enjoyed a VIP Champagne Reception in the exclusive Founders’ Lounge, while Cuba Libres and mouthwatering Empanadas floated through the Grand Lobby as patrons perused an array of irresistible Silent Auction Items.  Following the Reception, guests flowed into the Rotunda as performance stations appeared for dinner – a Mariquita display with Chimichurri Roasted Loin and Papas Rellenas delight! As appetites were satiated, Ladies & Gents filled their souls with Live Latin Tunes by Henry Brun and the Latin Playerz. As they entered HEB Performance Hall guests relished Dessert and Cafe Cubanos while our entertainment took to the stage with hot Rhumba & ChaChaCha, setting the dance floor on fire!  Guests joined the heat as the band played on accompanied by Cuban singer Noybel Gorgoy – shimmying and shaking the night away!

Musical Bridges would like to express our deepest gratitude to Drs. Eric and Michelle Miller of Central Texas Pain Center and Hunter’s Creek Pharmacy for underwriting the gala and to all of our sponsors for making this evening a success!

We would like to thank all of our amazing volunteers including: Susan Smylie, Connie White, Amanda Silva, Clemence Le Saux, Annette Paulin, Anne & Patrick Toxey and Durriya Rampurawala.  We thank you for your hard work, time and dedication to our organization.

Another special thanks to Ocho Lounge at The Hotel Havana for donating the no-host after-party as Gentlemen lit up their Montecristos and Ladies sipped a Montserrat and regale with tales of recent revelry…

The Kids to Concerts series was developed as an outreach program for at-risk children in underprivileged schools in San Antonio. In a typical school we visit, 67% of students are defined as at risk of dropping out, and 83% are identified as economically disadvantaged. Kids to Concerts brings the rare, precious experience of live art, integrating music and dance, to San Antonio children who would otherwise not have the opportunity to enjoy a live experience of this unique caliber, at no charge to the schools visited. Due to popular demand we plan to visit up to 50 schools next year, impacting nearly 35,000 children.

See more of Ken Mahnke’s gala photos HERE.