Parties: A Stylish Pas De Deux

by Anh-Minh Le

Haute couture and dance converged at Saint Joseph’s Arts Society on March 30, as the San Francisco Ballet Auxiliary hosted its much-anticipated luncheon and fashion show featuring Maison Rabih Kayrouz, presented by Burlingame boutique Sam Malouf Authentic Luxury.

A sold-out crowd of 210 — raising almost $300,000 for SF Ballet causes such as artistic initiatives for the company and scholarships for SF Ballet School students — occupied intimate dining tables as well as various lounge areas in the historic venue. Supporters enjoyed scrumptious fare by Elaine Bell Catering while oohing and aahing over nearly two dozen looks from MRK’s Fall 2022 collection.

Prior to the fashion show, event chair Rhonda Mahendroo, Gloria Malouf and Rabih Kayrouz addressed the chic audience. The Paris-based designer, who Malouf approached about the benefit several years ago (it was pushed back from 2020), shared that after agreeing to participate, he had some hesitancy. “I’m so very attached to home,” Kayrouz explained. This was his first time in San Francisco — plus his first-ever West Coast showing — and upon receiving such a warm, enthusiastic welcome from the SF Ballet community, he noted, “I understood why I’m here. … I’m very happy to be here. Thank you, all.”

The models — which included SF Ballet principal dancers Nikisha Fogo and Mathilde Froustey — made their way through the seated attendees, providing everyone a chance to marvel at the MRK creations. Following SFBA president Katie Colendich’s closing remarks, guests were invited onto the renovated church’s stage for a trunk show. We already anticipate seeing the MRK floral sequined ensembles and black crepe gown with fringes at future functions!

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