Las Casas Foundation Hosts Annual Gala Honoring Charline McCombs
By Ellie Leeper
Photography By Greg Harrison
THE SCENE: Las Casas Foundation hosted their annual gala in San Antonio on the stage of the historic Majestic Theatre and in the Charline McCombs Empire Theatre. Both stages share one historic building downtown, together establishing the Joci Straus Performing Arts Center. Chairing the gala this year were Celebration Chairs Joci and Joe Straus and Celebration Honorary Chair Estela Avery.
THE VIBE: Guests dined on stage in the iconic Majestic Theatre and enjoyed a dedication for Charline McCombs and the Las Casas Foundation, emceed by local news anchor Randy Beamer. Following the dinner program, guests migrated next door to the Charline McCombs Empire Theatre to enjoy a Broadway revue concert, Opening Night, featuring Las Casas student scholarship alumni, current professional performers, as well as seasoned Broadway veterans.
Opening Night was emceed by six-time Emmy Award winner Bruce Vilanch who kept the crowd laughing between acts. Guests sipped Kahlua milkshakes and snacked on popcorn at their seats as they enjoyed the program. Young performers from The Woodlawn Theatre Chorus provided a vibrant and energetic supporting ensemble behind Broadway vets Alix Korey (Chicago), Sal Mistretta (Evita), Gwen Stewart (Rent), and others. Floral decorations for the evening were provided by Danny Cuellar and Trinity Flowers.
THE CAUSE: Las Casas is dedicated to the preservation and restoration of the Majestic Theatre and the Charline McCombs Empire Theatre and the development of the San Antonio Performing Arts Center. The Las Casas Performing Arts Scholarship Competition has awarded over $385,000 to students in the last five years.