Westin Diplomat Resort, February 15th, 2014

A report by attendee Georgette Hodson

 

Marla and I arrived around 6:30pm at the ball and had our photos taken by the DRI photographers, we found our place cards and entered into the cocktail hour. There was a spread of every kind of h'orderves you could think of from fruit and cheese to four kinds of shrimp, pigs in a blanket, backed ziti salads and an open bar.

About 7:30 the main ballroom opened and we made our way to our tables where a jar of caviar and a bread platter awaited us, the waiter going from table to table offering red or white wine. A plate of sorbet was served, after that was our main course of bone in fillet, potatoes au gratin and steamed asparagus. After dinner coffee or tea was offered and of course there was the open bar. Then came the opening ceremonies with hostess Belkys Nerey known from her time on Deco Drive. Awards were presented to the distinguished volunteers. Sonja Zuckerman matriarch of DRI for 40 years thanked everyone for coming and gave a speech. Maybe it was just me but I got the feeling in a way Sonja was saying goodbye, as she finished her last word of her speech .. PARTY .. suddenly a burst of sparklers lit at each table centerpiece (scared the boogers out of me).

About this time Erleen Webster and I went to the restroom and on our way back who should we run into Mr Barry Gibb himself. We chatted with him briefly, wished him luck with the show and we headed back to our tables. After a short wait the man himself took the stage to the delight of the 800+ on attendance. Barry did not fail to amaze and awe the crowd as he sang his hits, among them Words, Tragedy, Night Fever, Staying Alive, How Can You Mend A Broken Heart, along with not so well known hit In The Morning. I melted when he sang Don't Throw It All Away (Our Love) and Barry performed duets with both Sammy Gibb and Beth Cohen, also did a duet of New York Mining Disaster 1947 with Steve.

 

 

Steve performed a solo of "On Time" a classic first sung by his late Uncle, Maurice Gibb in 1971. His voice was harmonious, keeping to the original melody of the song. It seemed as though it was a song just written for today's music world and fitted great with his voice and style. What made me lose it emotionally and made the crowd greatly roar, was when Steve did a duet of "I've Just Gotta Get A Message To You" with his dad, Steve sang his late Uncle Robin's part, It was almost eerie hearing someone else sing those lines and it seemed a song that was meant for him to perform, his voice has fully developed into its own wondrous instrument that would never be confused. Along with his delightful melodies, Steve guitar playing is superior (why guitar players always make faces like there in pain is beyond me, LOL). A wonderful, enjoyable and unique performance.

After almost 2 hours Barry concluded his show and left the stage leaving us wanting MORE. Doors to the cocktail hour room opened again and a large spread of desserts were offered from an ice cream bar to chocolate mousse to fruit along with Starbucks coffee. When exiting the ball we were given our gift (a silver perfume dispenser that you can take to Saks and have filled and our photo that was taken when we first arrived.

A great night full of Love, Hope, Fun and friends.

 

Georgette has shared a selection of her photos of the sound check as well as the Ball in the Photo Section. Thank you Georgette.

 

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