White Rose Ball to mark 60th anniversary Feb. 3

going-placescDr. Laszlo Szabo, United States ambassador to Hungary, and his wife will be the guests of honor Feb. 3 at the Hungarian Arts Club’s 60th anniversary Feher Rozsa Bal (White Rose Ball), at which two young Grosse Ile Township women will make their bows to society.

Samantha Molnar and Elizabeth Molnar will be among six debutantes to be introduced at the black-tie event, to be held at the Dearborn Inn Marriott.

A reception at 6:30 p.m. will be followed by the introduction of honored guests and scholarship winners and the performance of the Hungarian royal court dance the Palotas, by the debutantes and their escorts.

Elizabeth and Samantha are students at Grosse Ile High School and both enjoy horseback riding. Elizabeth also plays hockey, and Samantha plays tennis.

Also making their bows will be Kaili Brooks of Ypsilanti, Codi McPeek of Saline, Reagan McNamara of Oakland Township and Meaghan Kuczajkda of Finksburg, Md.

Former debutantes Rechal Woods of Ann Arbor and Claudia Bihar of Davisburg will be introduced and will participate in the court dance.

In addition to the Szabos, guests of honor will be Zita Benscik of the Hungarian Consulate of Chicago and Andras Juhasz, the consulate’s Hungarian trade commissioner.

Szabo, who is honorary chairman of the ball, earned a medical degree at the University of Debrecen, Hungary, and then worked at several Eli Lilly international locations and the firm’s world headquarters in Indiana.

He subsequently was named CEO of one of the world’s largest generic drug firms in Hungary (Teva), before joining the Hungarian government as deputy minister for foreign affairs and trade.

Fine arts scholarships will be presented to Meaghan Kuczajda, Ambrielle Stoltz-Bango and Alex Toth.

Kuczajda, who will receive the grant based on her drawings, is a freshman at the Savannah College of Art & Design. She also sings and plays the piano.

Stoltz-Bango of Ann Arbor, who was a debutante last year, is being recognized for her vocal ability. She is a freshman at the University of Michigan.

Toth, who lives in Pinkney, excels in playing the alto saxophone. He is in his freshman year in music studies at Central Michigan University.

Grant winners will demonstrate their talents for the guests during the evening.

The Hungarian Arts Club was organized in 1958 to preserve, foster, nourish, support and promote the Hungarian culture in the United States, a spokesman for the organization said.

An outgrowth of a formal ball called the “Radio Ball,” chaired by the owner of a Hungarian radio station and Hungarian newspaper in 1956, the Hungarian Arts Club was established in the Delray section of Detroit by a group of Hungarian artists, dignitaries and business owners. In addition to promoting the Hungarian culture, the organizers also wanted to support Hungarian artists and art students.

A member of the group who was a descendant of Hungarian royalty suggested the ball be renamed Feher Rosza Bal, at which Hungarian debutantes would be introduced.

Following royalty tradition, debutantes wear floor-length white gowns, curtsey to the ball guests and then dance with their fathers to the strains of “The Blue Danube Waltz.”

Additional information about the Hungarian Arts Club and its programs is available from Linda Enyedy at 248-352-0927.

Coming up . . . . .

Feb. 1-3 — Final performances of “Emilie” by the Open Book Theatre Company, with Krista Schafer Ewbank, company artistic director, in the role of Emilie; 8 p.m. at the Open Book Theatre, 1621 West Road, Trenton; tickets, $20 ($15, students and seniors), are available at www.openbooktc.com or by calling 734-288-7753.

Feb. 6-18 — Musical, “Finding Neverland,” based on the Academy Award-winning movie by the same name and by the play “The Man Who Was Peter Pan”; Fisher Theater, tickets starting at $39 are available at all Ticketmaster locations, by phone at 800-982-2787 and online at www.broadwayindetroit.com or www.ticketmaster.com.

Feb. 10 — Taylor Conservatory Foundation Mardi Gras Gala, 6 to 8 p.m. at The Bentley, 646 Biddle, Wyandotte; tickets are $75; for reservations, call 734-558-3228 or 734-558-8015 or go to www.Taylorconservatory.org.