BY JUDY CARMACK BROSS
Immensely clever and always discerning gala co-chair Katherine Harvey told the story of the rock opera Jesus Christ Superstar in her centerpieces at a dinner in the William B. and Catherine Graham at the Lyric Opera recently prior to a performance.
Hosted by the Women’s Board and the Guild Board of Directors, the evening, attended by over 300 guests, ended in the wee hours with an after party—bringing in even more revelers—at The Murphy chaired by Marc Lacher and Dan Manoogian of the Guild. Katherine did her research, Women’s Board President Nancy Searle said right on, and the Flower Firm delivered.
Katherine described how she set the tone with her well-researched plan:
“We chose figs, the tree of life and representative of good and evil; olive branches as symbols of peace; euphorbia splendens, the red flowers representing his blood known as the thorns of Christ; palms, the victory of martyrs or victory of the spirit over the flesh; the Easter lily, symbol of purity, grace, joy, hope and life; and finally, the Jerusalem artichoke, or sun choke, which is not really an artichoke, but I thought the name was appropriate. Curiously, they come from the American prairie.
“The Flower Firm did a great job. There were two strips of a gray gauzelike fabric as overlay on each table that they had placed very neatly. I had them mess it up, which made the difference. The euphorbia splendens (thorns of Christ) was not potted, so there was dirt spilled on the tables. It looked great—just what I wanted.
Katherine added her thanks to the Lyric:
“I salute Lyric for having the courage to produce the opera. It was a grand evening beginning with cocktails in the foyer of the opera house. The performance was what one hoped for: energetic and nonstop motion. Truly a splendid production!
“The evening could not have happened without the wonderful Lyric staff. Every detail was taken care of—nothing was left to chance. They even had earplugs in case the music was too loud (I choose yellow for cowardice but did not need them).”