“No One Is Alone”
The stage door at the “St. Jimmy.”
Ladies and Gents,
A very wise man once said the devil’s in the details. I never really understood what that meant until I became severely farsighted.
It Takes Two
Primary Stages kicked off their weeklong “Concert Series,” celebrating their 25th Anniversary, on Sunday with “An Evening with Charles Busch & Julie Halston.” I was seated smack between Alison Fraser and Penny Fuller, and right behind Daniel Davis. If my seat had been on the aisle I would have been rolling in it when they acted out a dialogue between Joan Crawford (Halston) and Bette Davis (Busch) discussing their working relationship while filming Whatever Happened to Baby Jane. One of the funniest bits I’ve ever seen! When the evening’s stars entered the lobby after the performance, the appreciation from the audience was so loud it was as if the Beatles on “Ed Sullivan”!
I was enchanted at the star-studded opening of American Idiot on Tuesday. I was seated right behind The Donald, and his precious wife Melania (who was snapping so many cell phone photos of the stage, it was as if she’d never seen one before). It was a chic locale from which to view one of the most exciting and inventive stage shows to come down the Broadway pike in quite some time. As I mentioned in an earlier column, this punk-pop spectacular has been credited with bringing a new element of theatergoer to the St. James (or, as it’s now being called, the St. Jimmy). I, for one, found the youthful energy absolutely intoxicating!
I attended the opening night of Annie Baker’s new play The Aliens at Rattlestick Playwrights Theater on Thursday. The entire cast of Ms. Baker’s most recent smash hit, Circle Mirror Transformation, came out to support. At the after party, at Dublin 6 on Hudson, word was circulating that the all-important New York Times review was available online, but Ms. Baker apparently doesn’t like to deal with such petty issues as reviews. Everyone politely and patiently waited for her to exit before rushing to the nearest blackberry to get the news. It was, as we all know now, an absolute, out-and-out rave! Rattlestick keeps proving, show after show, that it’s one of the major nerve centers of Off-Broadway.
Italy in Manhattan
World renowned interior designer Matthew White has a brand new book out called Italy of My Dreams. It’s full of gorgeous pictures of homes he has both designed and lived in. Tonight is the book party. Where, you ask? Where else but the Consulate General of Italy! A fitting venue for a man so obsessed with Italian art and architecture, no? Tomorrow night he hosts another party, this one at the flagship store of ultra-luxe jeweler Verdura, where he’ll be selling special editions of his book to raise money for Save Venice, Inc., of which he is the president. I’ll be attending BOTH events and you’ll get the full report in next week’s column.
This Sunday I’ll be cheering on Daryl Roth as she accepts her Lifetime Achievement Award at the Lucille Lortel Awards. It is a well-deserved honor for the reining queen of Off-Broadway theater. Tonight, the Paley Center is hosting “An Evening with Joel Grey,” honoring Joel’s nearly six decades of memorable television work. Congratulations to both Daryl and Joel!
My dear friend from the West Coast, Beth DuMont finally made her way to New York this past week. She took me to Bar Centrale to enjoy one or twelve cocktails with jewelry mogul Harriet Anthony. Beth introduced me to her friend, the Hollywood bigshot producer Dan Jinks, seated at a nearby table. Then a cavalcade of stars started streaming in, one-by-one: Stockard Channing followed by Camryn Manheim followed by John Stamos and Maura Tierney, followed by Richard Belzer. I told Mr. Jinks that, with such a talented crowd, all he needed was a script and a director and he could produce a great film! He said, “Don’t forget about the funding.” See, kids, the devil’s in the details.
Tidbits from around town
Glimpsed Christina Ricci stocking up on protein bars at a deli on 8th Avenue.
Overheard the unmistakable voice of Helen Reddy singing a few bars of something unfamiliar on West 46th Street.
Witnessed Denzel Washington haggling with a dry cleaner of the price of having a suit pressed.
Ran into Harry Haun and Norbert Leo Butz shopping for neckties at Saks Fifth Avenue.
Sat next to Tiki Barber in a spin class. I only lasted 5 minutes, but he had barely broken a sweat by the time I left.
As always, a toast of something sparkling to you and yours!