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Black Tie International:
On The Town With Aubrey Reuben -January 5, 2019

 

 

Aubrey Reuben

On the Town With Aubrey Reuben
Where All the Stars Shine Brightly!

January 5, 2019


 

The New York Gilbert & Sullivan Players, presented The Pirates of Penzance, libretto by William S. Gilbert, music by Arthur Sullivan, at the Kaye Playhouse at Hunter College. It was their final production of 2018. Fans of one of the most popular light operas that Gilbert and Sullivan ever created enjoyed this delightful production, first performed in New York in 1879, directed and conducted by Artistic Director Albert Bergeret, who founded the company in 1974. It is his gift to New York audiences, and they respond with well deserved ovations. The cast sang, acted and danced well to the glorious music, played beautifully by the orchestra. Sarah Caldwell Smith was a strong voiced Mabel, James Mills was an amusing Major General Stanley, Matthew Wages was a fine Pirate King and David Auxier was a perfect Sergeant of Police, but it was Louis Dall'Ava in the ensemble as a policeman in the second act, who stole the show. He is one of the oldest members of the company, and was hilarious.
 
Clueless, The Musical, by Amy Heckerling, at the Pershing Square Signature Center, is a production of The New Group. Based on the film of the title, it tells the story of a young, spoilt, high school girl (Dove Cameron) in Los Angeles in the 1990s, who spends her time at school looking to interfere in the love lives of her teachers and students. It is a pretty silly story. However, the large cast is energetic, sing and dance well, under the direction of Kristin Hanggi, and choreographer Kelly Devine. Since the film was popular in 1995, the musical will appeal to young girls.

Cold War , written and directed by  Pawel Pawlikowski , Poland/UK/France 2018, at Film Forum, begins in 1947 in Communist Poland, where a folklore company of singers and dancers is formed. The conductor and pianist ( Tomasz Kot ) falls in love with one of the singers/dancers ( Joanna Kulig ). We follow the star-crossed lovers over the years of the Cold War in Poland, Germany and France..
.It is a wonderful film, and the two leading actors are terrific. It will be screened at Film Forum beginning December 21 and will be ongoing. 

MoMA presented 
Ugo Tognazzi: Tragedies of a Ridiculous Man December 5-28. I managed to see three films of the great Italian actor, director and screenwriter. The finest was La Cage aux folles (Birds of a Feather), by Edouard Molinaro, France/Italy, 1978, about two gay couple (Ugo Tognazzi and Michel Seurralt), who own a nightclub in St. Tropez, where one stars in a drag show. When Tognazzi's son arrives to announce that he is marrying the daughter of an ultraconservative government official, and they will be visiting to meet them, they have to pretend that they are a typical man and wife. The film is hilarious, and the cast is superb. From this film, a musical version became a hit on Broadway in 1983. The other two films La proprieta non e piu un furto (Property is No Longer a Theft), de Elio Petri, Italy, 1973, and Splendori e miserie di Madame Rpyale, by Vittorio Caprioli, Italy 1970, were interesting, but not as good. Still, Tognazzi gave splendid performances in each film.
 
The highlight of the year is always the 64th Anniversary International Debutante Ball 2018 at the Pierre Hotel, 2 East 61st St. All the beautiful young ladies are charming, and among them I had the pleasure of chatting with several of them, including from Belgium Miss Axelle Laurent Josi, from France Miss Catherine d'Angine (photo of the two below) , from Scotland Miss Charlotte Drummond-Herdman andMiss Lexa Drummond of Megginch (photo below) and Princess Aurelia of Liechtehstein. At the cocktail reception I had a delightful chat with Dimitri Ziadi-Campbell of Castle Goring, the son of Lady Colin Campbell, who attended the event at the invitation of the publicist Christine Biddle. The dinner was scrumptious, and the guests were elegant. For me, 2018 finished on a high note. It was a memorable evening, one which I will cherish.

 

 

   

Photo by:  Aubrey Reuben

Photo by:  Aubrey Reuben

 

Gerard Mc Keon and Joyce Brooks.  Pjhoto by:  Susumu Sato

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