Lucky Charms

Charms, cranes, champagne, music, film and oh, yeah, dancing. It's the third Pink Ribbons/Dancers in Motion Against Breast Cancer gala, Pink Charm. Executive director Jane Weiner puts the fun in fund-raising, inviting artists from three disciplines to donate their work for the evening.

This time around, the former Doug Elkins dancer won't be performing with her group Hope Stone. Weiner will contribute a new work, Objects in the Mirror Are Closer Than They Appear, to be performed by the Houston Metropolitan Dance Company. Company member Kristina Burgess is looking forward to performing the piece on the Cullen Stage but also values the chance to help. "As a dancer, I don't have a lot of money to give, so this is my way of helping find a cure," she says.

Also performing are artists from Houston Ballet and Weave Dance Company, New York dancers David Parker and Sara Hook, Sisters Morales and the Houston Boys Choir. A short film by L.A.'s Victoria Marks is on the program as well.

So what sort of charm could live up to this event? "Max Lang called me and said, 'I want to make a charm for you,' " says Weiner. "I said, 'Whoa!' " The well-known local silversmith has crafted a piece in the shape of the project's ribbon logo to be auctioned alongside other items donated by Texas Monthly.

Other good-luck tokens, like 1,000 origami cranes, will decorate the foyer. Weiner took a similar strand of paper cranes to her sister Susan Rafte when she was in the hospital with breast cancer. It was Rafte's battle that brought Weiner to Houston and inspired the first Pink Ribbons event. Rafte now serves as president of the project.

Weiner is already looking forward to the next gala, thinking that they might put it "on ice" because of the current popularity of figure skating. But beyond that, she has no plans. "My dream is that in a couple of years we won't have to do it," she says, "because there will be a cure."

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Marene Gustin