How the Bass Ball Raised More than $2 Million and Became Miami’s Best Gala

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Jonathan Breene, Criselda Breene by DHPA
Jonathan Breene, Criselda Breene by DHPA

Greatness: it always comes from the top down. And in the case of The Bass Ball’s emergence as a true fashion event to dress wild and whimsically for, leadership is everything. It started with The Bass Ball Chair Criselda Breene, one of Miami’s most fashionable residents, urging friends to “go for it” when it came to the event’s surrealistic theme.

Sam Robin by Manny Hernandez
Sam Robin by Manny Hernandez

Fellow Chairs Soledad Picón, Tui Pranich, Inés Rivero and Diane Lieberman followed suit. After all, this year was special with the gala taking place in front of the currently under-construction museum.

Adrienne bon Haes by Manny Hernandez
Adrienne bon Haes by Manny Hernandez

Go for it- they did! There were Magritte-style bowler hats, a dress that lit up (worn by Adrienne bon Haes,) an outfit that played music ( a pink neoprene Oscar Carvallo gown accessorized with speakers playing an erie version of La Vie en Rose worn by Keep the Ball Rolling Chair, Alexa Wolman) and lots and lots of feats of creativity and amazing design on display.

Oscar Seikaly
Oscar Seikaly

All of this fabulous fashion set the a most glamorous stage for some serious patronage. Two serious donations were given on the spot, including $1 million each from Bass Museum Board President George Lindemann, and Ambassador Paul and Mrs. Trudy Cejas.

George Lindemann by DHPA
George Lindemann by DHPA

If million dollar donations weren’t enough, a bit of intrigue was added into the mix when the Bass Musuem’s Executive Director and Chief Curator, Silvia Karman Cubiñá announced that another generous but mysterious gift had been made. They weren’t at liberty to reveal either the name of the donor, nor the amount.

Leslie Brown, Jeffrey Berkowitz, Hadley Henriette by DHPA
Leslie Brown, Jeffrey Berkowitz, Hadley Henriette by DHPA

As the announcements were made in the cozy tent, and the “ballers” were finishing dinner catered by Le Basque, a must unusual piece of performance art that was viewed from the front by those attending the ball, and from the back by those arriving at the “Keep the Ball Rolling” after party.

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It involved lots of colorful balloons being popped, the revealing of wriggling dancers and a hint of the feeling of South Africa, the country from which artist Athi-Patra Ruga came.

Naeem Khan, Princess Firyal of Jordan
Naeem Khan, Princess Firyal of Jordan

At midnight, tunes provided by DJ Mauricio Parra had packed the dance floor and Bass Ball Co-Chairs Criselda Breene, Diane Lieberman, Soledad Pićon, Tui Pranich and Inés Rivero and keep The Ball rolling Co-Chairs… Malena Assing, Clara Bullrich, Nathan Lieberman, John Lin, Adriana Vergara and Alexa Wolman decided to extend the party an extra hour. At the end of the night, guests received gift bags compliments of Tod’s, the event’s presenting sponsor.

Christina Getty, Alexa Wolman by DHPA
Christina Getty, Alexa Wolman by DHPA

Coldwell Banker Residential Real Estate was also a sponsor of the oh-so-chic event which also featured a Paddle 8 auction that included 25 works by contemporary artists such as Tracey Emin and Paola Pivi.

Photos by DHPA.com and Manny Hernandez

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