The Minnesota Orchestra's Symphony Ball once again loosened its bow tie and kicked up its heels.

The formal annual event was held last weekend inside the Minneapolis Depot, but just outside the building was an event aimed at young professionals called "Crash the Ball."

Kate Eiser took the orchestra up on its offer. "I may have put my flute down in high school, but it's fun to get together with friends and celebrate music," she said. And it wasn't the first time she's crashed a party. "I crashed a high school reunion once -- we got fake name tags and everything."

As the formal event wound down, traditional ballgoers turned the tables and crashed "Crash the Ball."

Music director Osmo Vänskä, who was at both parties, brought his daughter. Tytti Vänskä said she has memories of trying to learn violin from her conductor father.

"How do I say it in a polite way?" she asked. "Every time he tried to teach me, it was a fight."

Tytti now works in musical theater. And Osmo has advice for parents. "When they start to play, don't get involved," he said.

That's advice the maestro learned the hard way.

Sara Glassman • 612-673-7177