Greetings OX members!

We realize that you have not received a newsletter from us in quite a while and wanted you to know why. We haven’t dropped off the face of the earth, but rather, many of us have been working non-stop for several months to support the Minnesota Orchestra for this year’s Symphony Ball on June 24th, “A Night on the Silk Road.”

As you might not know, the Symphony Ball is the Minnesota Orchestra’s largest and most important fundraiser, and the monies raised are included in the organization’s yearly budget.  So when we were asked to be Symphony Ball co-chairs, as well as chairmen and women of Symphony Ball subcommittees and members of the subcommittees, we answered the call.  After all, OX’s mission to work to ensure that the Twin Cities community has a world-class Minnesota Orchestra that is financially sustainable completely aligns with the primary purpose of the Symphony Ball.

Symphony Ball Committee hard at work.


We are proud and honored that an unprecedented number of musicians, orchestra staff, Board members, and community members joined in our efforts!  These 90 people on the Symphony Ball committee worked diligently to make sure that this year’s Ball is compelling for everyone—-appealing to the Orchestra’s established fans as well as potential newcomers.  And the Silk Road theme is a rich source of artistic, musical, and culinary delights!  So if you haven’t thought about or known about the event yet, we invite you to seriously consider attending this year!

Auction Committee Co-chairs Linda Murrell and Marni Hougham (also Principal English Horn) describing exciting auction items.

The evening begins at the Hilton hotel with cocktails and a superb silent auction (co-curated by OX co-chair Linda Murrell and Principal English Horn Marni Hougham) in a Turkish inspired Grand Bazaar, then an authentic Persian dinner in a caravanserai, followed by a virtual journey over the Central Asian steppes and Indian Himalayas (the skyways) to beyond the Great Wall (Orchestra Hall) where the main concert and entertainment will take place.  The highlight of the evening will be the world-premiere of the 22-minute “Silk Road Symphonic Fantasy” (the brainchild of OX co-chair Kenneth Huber) followed by Dessa performing with the Orchestra in two new compositions.  The celebration will continue in the Hall with dancing to the band Synergy, hors d’oeuvres, desserts, authentic Chinese entertainment, as well as Dessa performing her own 30 minute set in the auditorium.

Stephen Hamilton (l) and Ken Huber (r) chatting with Dessa. Stephen initiated Symphony Ball retail partnerships for the Orchestra and Ken chaired the Music Committee.
“The Trio.”
Read this KSTP-TV interview with Laurie Greeno and Dessa.  Also watch for an interview with Ball co-chairs (aka “the trio”) Laurie Greeno, MaryAnn Goldstein and Paula DeCosse in the Star Tribune next Sunday, June 18.  WCCO-TV will highlight the Symphony Ball with a fashion show on their Midmorning Show at 9 am on June 19.
Conductor Mark Russell Smith giving Symphony Ball Committee members a lesson to make the Conduct the Orchestra auction item fun, rather than intimidating.

Tickets for the entire Symphony Ball experience are available at $425 ($275 tax-deductible) and for the Orchestra Hall portion at $75 ($25 tax-deductible) here. The deadline for RSVPs is June 20th 

Please join us in supporting the Minnesota Orchestra so that it remains our community’s magnificent musical treasure!   We look forward to seeing you along the Silk Road!

Symphony Ball 2017: Orchestrating Excellence along the Silk Road