The Column

“Some Enchanted Evening”

Paul Szot poses with the hosts of his opening night at the Cafe Carlyle: Ambassador Osmar Chohfi and Erich Steinbock.


Ladies and Gents,

It is official! Fall is upon us. Time to break out the cashmere.

Szot in the dark

Last Tuesday I attended the opening night of Paulo Szot’s all-too-limited engagement at The Café Carlyle. What a great room! Now, the phrase “a great room” can mean two things in this business: either a beautiful venue or a great celebrity turn out. In this case, I mean it both ways! The Café Carlyle could make a roomful of schlubs feel like a Kennedy family reunion, but there were no schlubs in sight on Tuesday! Joel Grey sat with Isabel Keating who was across the room from Joan Rivers who hugged Phyliss Newman who sat next to Tommy Tune who I saw chatting with Barbara Walters who kissed Barbara Cook who sat near Chita Rivera who sat behind Geraldo Rivera who greeted Robert Osbourne who waved to Mo Rocca who visited with Kelli O’Hara who raised a glass to Alice Hammerstein Mathias and Mary Rodgers Guettel! And the whole evening was hosted by Ambassador Osmar Chohfi, the Consulate General of Brazil in New York, along with the Carlyle’s wonderfully gracious Managing Director Erich Steinbock.

Well, onto the show! The gorgeous Mr. Szot left me in such a romantic frenzy that my entire body was literally vibrating by the time he finished his first number! I felt like Meg Ryan in that famous Katz’s Deli scene from When Harry Met Sally! His set was a mix of Broadway, standards and Latin numbers. It was sensational! A real swoonfest!

A "Night" to remember

I caught an early preview of a remarkable show down at the Union Square Theatre called Through the Night. This young man named Daniel Beaty is both its author and its sole star. He gives the kind of performance that comes around just once in a season. I lost count of how many characters he plays, but it has to be near two dozen. Each character is completely distinct to the point where you feel like you are watching a full cast on that stage. It’s theatrical magic at it’s most elemental! I’m telling all my friends to go see this show, and go now!

Last Summer Weekend

I was determined to get out of town for the last weekend of the summer, so I visited a good friend who lives up in that spectacular spot in the Berkshires, Great Barrington. Well, said friend took me to a certain Mexican boite, where we indulged in tequila flights as we dined al fresco. I was so tipsy that I was completely unaware that I was being positively eaten alive by swarms of mosquitoes (yes, folks, my buzz left me unawares of the buzzing)! At some point, during the car ride back to the house, I blew up like a puffer fish. I haven’t been that swollen and itchy since I binged on a tainted fried clam po’ boy at a truckstop in Mooringsport, Louisiana and had to air-lifted to the nearest hospital! What a way to end what has been a truly idyllic summer.

Tidbits from around town:

Saw local TV icon Sue Simmons strolling through Chinatown, sipping a bubble tea.

Witnessed A-list tranny Amanda Lepore (or a dead ringer) snoring loudly under a tree in Battery Park City.

Caught the little kid who played Cubbie Bernstein in those infamous Xanadu YouTube videos picking up six copies of Patti LuPone's new autobiography Patti LuPone: A Memoir, which a little birdie told me mentions yours truly!

Overheard television’s reining goddess of chicness, Ina Garten, explaining the difference between good vanilla extract and bad vanilla extract to a complete stranger at Citarella.

Finally, congratulations to theater professionals Aaron Lustbader and DJ Martin, who got hitched last week in what I hear was a breathtaking ceremony in Connecticut!

As always, a toast of something sparkling to you and yours!