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Heart Ball Pitter-Pats With Enthusiasm

March 03, 1994|MARY LOU LOPER

Chairwoman Gretchen Willison said her committee "has heart." She called prominent businessmen Peter Barker and Philip Neal "caring and capable people" and her "most wonderful dinner co-chairmen" of the American Heart Assn.'s 17th annual Heart Ball.

And, she stated her cause: "Nearly one in two will die of cardiovascular disease. Tonight is a celebration of something we all have in common--our hearts."

Ray Charles required his check in advance, and got it the day before, so the legendary entertainer delivered favorites such as "Georgia" and "Come Rain or Come Shine," making quite a few hearts throb with happy memories as he performed in dark glasses, taffeta jacket and brown socks that sagged in rhythm as he gyrated at his keyboard onstage in the Beverly Wilshire Ballroom.

Earlier, a live auction brought in a dazzling $66,900 with items such as $18,000 first-class tickets to London, a stay at Crescent H Ranch in Jackson Hole, Wyo., a golf and fish holiday at Peter Mullin's retreat in Scotland and the IBM Think-Pad 720 Personal Computer, which Tom Larkin had to have for $4,500.

Enjoying every delicious smoke-free minute were Marty and Bruce Coffey, Bob and Robin Paulson, Eric and Danielle Haskell, Spike and Debbe Booth, Robin Barker, Bruce Willison, Nadine and Ed Carson, Meredith MacRae, and John and Barbara De Groot.

Very Can Can: The mostly early 30s crowd in Circle of Friends, the support group for Kidspace Museum in Pasadena, painted the town rouge Saturday evening. The Can Can Cabaret with audience participation was a kick.

"This is imaginative--like Kidspace," said Tina Nieves, co-chairwoman with Sarah Shelton.

The live auction chaired by Cassie Harpel brought out the "kid" in the audience members, grossing $26,000 of the benefit net total of $42,000.

That total also included $16,000 in donations cornered by patron chairwoman Brooke Garlock, who hosted a table with husband Edward, ARCO counsel.

Executive director Kristi Williamson was among those who gathered for drinks in the parlor of the circa 1898 Castle Green. (Early Santa Fe train travelers vacationed at the Green).

Others there were museum board chairman Jim and Gail Ellis, Harry and Mary Eversole, Vicky and David Rogers, David and Cathie Partridge, Circle of Friends president Judy Imhoff and husband Buz, Carlton and Laura Seaver, Amy and David Lamb, Lisa Fay with Peter Matthiessen (they stood for caricatures), Henry and Robin Williamson, Jessica and Tom Korzenecki, Sally and Ken Dulin, David and Kaki Allen, and Ted and Deedie McCarthy.

Very Butterfly: Blossoms, lanterns and fans designed by Dan Klemuk combined with sushi, sashimi, noodles, sesame chicken and even imported beer for a Japanese flair at the party underwritten by Solomon Bros. Inc. after the opening of Puccini's "Madama Butterfly" at the Dorothy Chandler Pavilion.

Galina Gorchakova, the youthful Siberian soprano from the Kirov Opera, received standing ovations in the theater and yet again as she made her gala entrance at the party at the Pavilion Restaurant.

Los Angeles Music Center Opera Board Chairman Bernard Greenberg and his wife, Lenore, and Opera General Director Peter Hemmings greeted stars and patrons including Katherine and Arpad Domyan, Mary Hayley and Selim Zilkha, Geri and Richard Brawerman, Patricia Kennedy, Rosalind and Hal Millstone and Annette and Peter O'Mally.

Escalation: Cindy and Kevin Costner, along with their partners in the new Twin Palms restaurant in Pasadena, tossed a private party the other evening with a stellar crowd--including L.A. Mayor Richard Riordan and Nancy Daly, Mike and Judy Ovitz, and Tom and Debbie Tellefsen--jockeying for seats. The Costners' partners Dennis and Missy Alfieri were among hosts. In the happy crowd: Steve and Susan Ascher, Melinda Winston, Ed and Mary Shea and lots of other Sheas, Sue Chastain of San Francisco, and Tilly and Tom Collins.

Plaudits: The women--Jackie Autry, Marilyn Hall, Dolores Hope and Beverly Rogers--had the spotlight at the Variety Children's Charities of the Desert salute at Marriott Rancho Las Palmas. Mousie Powell was chairwoman . . . Kate Westlake, Wendy Warren, Wendy Siciliano, Victoria Dean, Heather Haldeman and Casey Olson are a sixsome chairing the Childrens Hospital Spring Luncheon and Children's Fashion Show Saturday at the Beach Club . . . USC's School of Fine Arts honors architect Frank O. Gehry at a reception Sunday at the Brentwood home of art collectors Stanley and Elyse Grinstein. . . .

Costume Council members at Los Angeles County Museum of Art watched Edward Maeder, curator of the Costumes and Textile department, moderate a panel on "all about style" and then bid fond adieus to Maeder, who's leaving the museum. . . . The City of Hope's 500 Club staged testimonials at the banquet honoring Joann Roth-Oseary, owner of the catering firm, Someone's In the Kitchen. . . . June Banta has been named new president of the Pasadena Guild of Childrens H1869836393ell, Alicia Amador and Freda Hinsche Otto.

Kudos: To Robert Erburu, chairman and CEO of Times Mirror, publisher of the Los Angeles Times, who was honored by the Independent Colleges of Southern California as the organization's former chairman. The luncheon event also welcomed new directors--Gene Bell, Adriana Boeka, Wm. Cedric Johnson and Gary Matus. . . .

To Dan and Frani Ridder, "Sweethearts of the Year" at the Long Beach Youth Home Boosters fund-raiser on the Queen Mary. . . .

To Stepping Stone Resource Board's successful luncheon headed by Carolyn Taff. . . .

And to the Almansor Center Country-Western line-dancing hoedown headed by Laurie Zeh for programs for substance-exposed infants.

Mary Lou Loper's column is published Thursdays.

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