The Dallas Opera has only had two music directors since its founding 56 years ago. Graeme Jenkins just took his final bow with the organization after almost 25 years at the conductor’s stand. Today, his successor was announced, and yes, it’s another European to lead a local classical music organization (which had some music watchers grumbling about the Old World’s sustained dominance of top positions in American ensembles). We spoke to the new maestro, Emmanuel Villaume, and you can read that piece over on FrontRow. And to break up your midday, here’s Villaume conducting Anna Netrebko and the National Orchestra of Belgium’s performance of “Je veux vivre” from Gounod’s Romeo and Juliet.
Despite causing a traffic jam around downtown Dallas last night, the Klyde Warren Park donor dinner was a hit. Stilettos were left at home and flats were making the rounds.
Everywhere you looked there were power types like Mayor Mike Rawlings, Margaret McDermott, Ross Perots Jr. and Sr., Ebby Halliday, Elaine Agather, Owen Wilson and other boldfacers.
Despite the famous and familiar of Dallas, the one who had everyone talking was 12-year-old singing phenom Jackie Evancho, who performed with the Dallas Symphony Orchestra. What a voice!
There’s a thing called Betches Love This. It’s kind of like Stuff White People Like, only instead of white people, you’re talking about betches. And a betch, if you don’t know, is just another word for that other word. Anyway, the anonymous betches over at Betches Love This periodically break down a university, betch-wise. Yesterday they did a betches guide to SMU. It is unkind is a very NSFW way.
Our very own online lifestyle editor, Raya Ramsey, acquitted herself nicely this morning on WFAA’s morning show, Daybreak. But that dastardly host Ron Corning cut her off before she could plug our website featuring even more ways to celebrate the holidays: www.dmagazine.com/events
She’ll get you next time, Corning.
Last week, Russell Armstrong, the estranged husband of Real Housewives of Beverly Hills star Taylor Armstrong, hanged himself. Some say his actions were a result of what was about to be aired in the next season of RHBH. Bravo, which airs the series, is now apparently re-editing its latest season because the impeding divorce between the Armstrongs was a major plot point.
Until yesterday, I didn’t know that Armstrong grew up here. Follow the jump and read the note sent to me by his friend Randy Edwards. (more…)
According to Pegasus News, Angus Wynne has reported the death of 92-year-old philanthropist Nancy Hamon, whose life was filled with much happiness and heartache. Her generosity was overwhelming (SMU, the Dallas Zoo, Presbyterian Hospital, UT Southwestern Medical Center, the Winspear Opera House, etc.); her parties, whether on board a yacht in the Mediterranean or at her Turtle Creek penthouse, were legendary; and her personal tragedies (the premature deaths of her son and her husband) were heartbreaking.
People Newspaper columnist Merritt Patterson hasÂ a full-blown review of Big Rich Texas (aka Texas Train Wreck of Bleach and Botox) that debuted last night on the Style Network. Someone needs to give a map to the show’s producers. The much-vaunted Woodhaven Country Club that is the “social place of Dallas” is actually in Fort Worth. The worn-out club was purchased last November by longtime member Louis Scoma Jr. At that point it had 433 members and hoped to reach a goal of 600 members and 150 social members.
Warning: We learned last night that club rules forbid profane tattoos to be visible. Heck, at this point they should take anybody who has air in their lungs.
Aretha Franklin was in Dallas last week, performing at a private party, when she apparently broke her toe. The 69-year-old legend proceeded to go on to her next engagement, but made a quick pit stop in Indianapolis for treatment.
Franklin performed Thursday at the home of a Dallas “oil baron” and was packing her clothing later in a hotel room when she stepped on the shoe, causing the heel to “wrap” around the toe, spokeswoman Tracey Jordan (not, as I pictured, Tracy Jordan)Â told the Associated Press Tuesday.
I’m still trying to wrap my head around that description, but thanks to Alan Peppard, we know that the oil baron in question was Jim Musselman, who threw the party in honor of his late wife, Shelly.
Â And this isn’t a street way off the beaten path, it’s an exitÂ alongÂ 75.Â
I’m just now learning that when Bill Maher was in town Sunday at the Winspear, he dropped a C-bomb, the second-most dreaded ordnance in the English lexicon, surpassed in its explosive power only by the N-bomb. He was, of course, talking about Sarah Palin. Former Observer scribe Andrea Grimes didn’t think it was very funny. Me, I’m not offended. Just a bit shocked. But when I asked my officemates if they were aware that Maher had dropped the C-bomb, one of them (a lady) just looked at me with a bored face.
“He does that all the time,” she said. “It’s not really news.”
“Huh,” I said. “I guess I’m just a little surprised that he’s going around talking like that.”
She said, “For a racist, you sure are a prude.”
Some gals, when they live through a divorce, get a face lift. Others get a boy toy. But newly-single Lee Bailey (aka Ed Bailey‘s ex-) just finished the final steps in purchasing Braden Power’s Casa Bellamini on Turtle Creek, with Allie Beth Allman’s Doris Jacobs making sure all the T’s were crossed. As one residential real estate pro put it, “It’s a perfect match.”
This 8,430-square-foot, two-story mansion, with its oh-so-cool party/spa master bathroom and salt-water pool in the living room, has been a neighbors’ nightmare. After a little refreshening, Lee claims the Cole Smith-designed palazzo will go from “the party house” to “the convent.”
BTW, the two black swans that originally came with the property are now down to one. Evidently, the surviving swan killed the other one.
UPDATE: Check out our full-on photo gallery from the GQ Super Bowl XLV Party at the Hickory Street Annex on Friday.
Ok, well, I’m sure it wasn’t just the GQ party that brought the celebs to town, but it did get several of them here. It was a fantastic party with plenty of celebrity sightings. We’ll have an album up soon with photos from the party taken by something more advanced than my digital camera and iPhone. (Both died before the end of the party. I will be more prepared for tonight’s parties.)
Snowpocalypse Continues to Plague Super Bowl XLV
Of course the story last night at the GQ, Lacoste, and Cadillac party was the weather. At least, it was at the beginning of the party. Media was told to arrive at 8:30, but valet didn’t open until 9. Therefore some of us had to walk a block in the snow/ice/sludge. The planners were still preparing the Hickory Street Annex 15 minutes before the party. They realized that when they put heat lamps on the deck, the ice on the overhang started melting. Not wanting to repeat the incident from earlier in the day, they sent people to the roof with shovels to knock down the snow and ice.
Tonight Gene and Jerry Jones are hosting a dinner party at Jerry World for the NFL owners. Because GJ and JJ tend to do things in a big way, we hear they’ve arranged to have Will Smith Jamie Foxx and Jennifer “Oscar-Winning, Weight-Losing” Hudson entertain the group.
Unfortunately, Jennifer couldn’t get out of Chicago, so the Joneses sent their plane to give her a lift this afternoon.
UPDATE: Alas, Jennifer didn’t make it as planned. Thank heaven, they had a Fergie nearby!
UPDATE ON UPDATE: Just heard from the Dallas Cowboys’ Joe Trahan (not to be confused with the WFAA Joe Trahan) that Jennifer did make it to the party after all and “performed late.”
It’s cold and icy outside. You’re likely stuck at home. So here’s a hot and steamy story from our January 2007 issue to warm your bones (not to mention the cockles of your heart). “The Police Chief and Reporter” reminds us how Sarah Dodd and David Kunkle initially got their groove on. Enjoy.
Dallas Morning News’ Tanya Eiserer reports that Mordan (legally known as Michael Manos) has returned to Dallas, but not on his own. After spending a year as a “guest” of the New York penal system, he was brought back to Dallas to work out his understanding of being naughty. Instead of dining at Bella Bar and Restaurant, he’ll be eating the cuisine at the Dallas County Jail.