I hope you are all resting after two very exciting 2013 Jazz and Heritage Festival Weekends. Compare to my birthday week, this week was subdued.
I started my week, by attending on Tuesday, the “Meet the Authors,” at the Cabildo. The Pirate’s Alley Faulkner Society and the Louisiana State Museum joined hands to celebrate publication of five new books by New Orleans authors. The authors were : former Louisiana Poet Laureate Brenda Marie Osbey, whose new
collection is History & Other Poems; mystery writer N. S. “Steve” Patrick, author of The Mysteries of Jack the Ripper; humorist
Judy Palmer, author of Southern Fried Divorce: the After Party; with Debra Shriver, Hearst Corporation Vice President and author of
In the Spirit of New Orleans; former New Orleans Assistant District Attorney Sanem Ozdural, whose debut novel is LIGA.
That evening it was also the lovely New Orleans Hispanic Heritage Foundation Scholars Reception at Gallier Hall. Forty-four scholarships were awarded that night to promising Hispanic scholars. I was so happy to see a new generation of talented scholars that will be continue our rich Hispanic heritage.
One of the many events that I enjoyed attending was the dedication of the Jazz & Heritage Center in honor of George and Joyce Wein. The New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival and Foundation, Inc., the nonprofit that owns the New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival presented by Shell, named the Center building in honor of the Weins, who founded the festival in 1970. George Wein, who earlier had founded the Newport Jazz Festival and many other events around the world, not only created the JazzFest, he also insisted that it would be owned by the nonprofit NOJ& H Foundation. Joyce Wein, a biochemist, was a vice president of their company Festival Productions, Inc., and a partner with George in all of their business ventures. She passed away in 2005 at age 76. By naming the new education and community center in the Weins’ honor, the Festival and Foundation preserves their legacy for future generations. I saw some many of my old friends at the dedication.
On Friday, I attended a lovely reception on the Occasion of the Investiture of His Majesty King Willem Alexander of the Kingdom of the Netherlands. The soiree was hosted by Hon. Constance Charles Willems, Honorary Consul of the Netherlands and her husband Casey Willems at the Plimsoll Club.
That evening, my darling friend Sammy Steele , was totally surprised when 30 of his friends were waiting for him at the delightful, fabulous “My Way: A Musical Tribute to Frank Sinatra” at the National WWII Museum. If you haven’t seeing the show, it was superb and I knew every song.
I concluded my wek by attending a very informative, delicious and decadent seminar at SoBou of the Museum of the American Cocktail. Mixologist extraordinaires Dale DeGroff andSimon Ford hosted a Punch ‘n’ Rum Gumbo presentation at SoBou while Chef Juan Carlos Gonzalez created his best gumbo to compliment this great American tradition! It was so much fun.
Darlings, National Tourism Week is May 4-12 and I am looking forward to participating on Tuesday, May 7 at the National Tourism Week Rally, from 9 to 10 a.m. The parade will start at the Royal Sonesta, 300 Bourbon Street, and end with a press conference at Tableau at the Le Petit Theatre, 616 St. Peter Street. National Travel and Tourism Week is a tradition celebrated annually since 1984. It was established as National Tourism Week when the U.S. Congress passed a joint resolution in 1983 designating the week to be celebrated in May. In a White House ceremony, President Reagan even signed a Presidential Proclamation urging citizens to observe the week with ceremonies and activities in their communities.
That evening, Tuesday, May 7, it is the “Hidden Treasures” FGI New Orleans Presentation, abehind-the-scenes look at Hidden Costumes and Gems at the Louisiana State Museum.Showcasing over 200 years of historic Carnival costumes, fashion and accessories, there will be a guided tour by Wayne Phillips, Curator of Costumes and Textiles. Refreshments will be served. The tour will last approximately one hour, starting at 7:00 p.m.
Darlings, I am looking forward to the monthly Royal Sonesta’s Round Table Luncheon that I have the pleasure of hosting this Wednesday, May 8, at noon in the Fleur de Lis Suite of the Royal Sonesta Hotel. The luncheon celebrates “Women and Motherhood” with an early Mother’s Day treat. Hosted by yours truly, the luncheon regularly presents dynamic guest speakers, lively entertainment, delicious cuisine and plenty of champagne. Darlings, plan to bring along your mom, sister, friends or co-workers to this month’s luncheon in the elegant Fleur de Lis Suite.
May’s featured speakers include Tracee Dundas, founder of Fashion Week New Orleans and Ashley Gunkel, Fashion Week’s 2013 ‘Top Design’ winner. Attendees will be treated to a fashion show featuring Gunkel’s unique designs. In keeping with the theme, Diane Lyons, founder of FestiGals, will share details about the upcoming June festival taking place in New Orleans June 20-23. Also on tap at the luncheon is Dianne De Las Casas, children’s book author and award-winning storyteller. As a special treat, De Las Casas’ daughter, Kid Chef Eliana will be present to talk about their new cookbook, Cool Kids Cook: Louisiana. Entertainment will be provided by cast members from the award-winning Broadway musical, “Gypsy,” opening May 10 at the Rivertown Theaters for the Performing Arts.
Executive Chef Peter Page and his talented culinary team have planned a sumptuous gourmet meal complete with wine pairings. The luncheon is $45 inclusive with advance reservations or $50 at the door. Parking will be validated. For reservations, please contact Noel Scallan at 504-553-2220 or email@example.com.
I have been invited to attend on Thursday, May 9, the media night of the Broadway musical “Wicked” that will be playing here from May 8-June 2 at Mahalia Jackson Theater. Not to be missed!
The other event that I am looking forward to is on Friday, May 10, the Ogden Museum of Art’s Sippin’ in Seersucker. Darlings, don your best seersucker ensemble – or summer chic – for this party that kicks off the summer social season. Hosted by the Shops at Canal Place, the event benefits the Ogden Museum of Southern Art. Partygoers will enjoy complimentary hors d’oeuvres from local restaurants and luscious libations, shopping specials, entertainment, and raffles, including entertainment, shopping, wine, “Be a Tourist in Your Own Hometown,” indulgence and Kohlmeyer Circle Art. There’s even a seersucker ensemble contest!
Have a great week!
Wednesday, May 8Royal Sonesta’s Round Table Luncheon – Celebrates Women and Motherhood
In honor of Mother’s Day, the Royal Sonesta Hotel’s Round Table Luncheon on Wednesday May 8th honors women with an early Mother’s Day treat. Hosted by social columnist Margarita “Darling” Bergen, the luncheon regularly presents dynamic guest speakers, lively entertainment, delicious cuisine and plenty of champagne, Darlings. Plan to bring along your mom, sister, friends or co-workers to this month’s luncheon presented in the elegant Fleur de Lis Suite.
May’s featured speakers include Tracee Dundas, founder of Fashion Week New Orleans and Ashley Gunkel, Fashion Week’s 2013 ‘Top Design’ winner. Attendees will be treated to a fashion show featuring Gunkel’s unique designs. In keeping with the theme, Diane Lyons, founder of FestiGals, will share details about the upcoming June festival taking place in New Orleans June 20th through 23rd. Also on tap at the luncheon is Dianne De Las Casas, children’s book author and award-winning storyteller. As a special treat, De Las Casas daughter Kid Chef Eliana will be present to talk about their new cookbook, Cool Kids Cook: Louisiana. Entertainment will be provided by cast members from the award-winning Broadway musical, Gypsy, opening May 10th at the Rivertown Theaters for the Performing Arts.
Executive Chef Peter Page and his talented culinary team have planned a sumptuous gourmet meal complete with wine pairings. The luncheon is $45 inclusive with advance reservations or $50 at the door. Parking will be validated. For reservations, please contact Noel Scallan at 504-553-2220 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Wednesday, May 8
Shakespeare in the Garden at NOMA’s Besthoff Sculpture Garden
Get transported back into time with NOMA and The NOLA Project’s production of Much Ado About Nothing. Played in NOMA’s Besthoff Sculpture Garden and set near the turn of the century in the old American South, this hilarious and festive comedy pits two of Shakespeare’s most beloved characters, Benedick and Beatrice, in a war of words and wits.http://www.noma.eventbrite.
Wednesdays at the Square presents:: Ivan Neville’s Dumpstaphunk + Mahayla
Concerts start at 5:00 p.m. and usually last until 7:00-7:30 p.m. Lafayette Square is located just one block off of Poydras Street, between St. Charles Avenue and Camp Street, opposite the Federal Court buildings
May 8-June 2
Broadway Across America Presents WICKED
Wicked: The Untold Story of the Witches of Oz) is a musical with music and lyrics by Stephen Schwartz and a book by Winnie Holzman. It is based on the 1995 Gregory Maguire novelWicked: The Life and Times of the Wicked Witch of the West, a parallel novel of the 1939 film The Wizard of Oz and L. Frank Baum‘s classic story The Wonderful Wizard of Oz.Mahalia Jackson Theater. For tickets visit: http://theatreneworleans.com/
Thursday, May 9
Thursdays at Twilight presents:- Leah Chase and Cindy Scott
Two great ladies come together for one great concert. Leah Chase is a versatile singer who makes a smooth transition from jazz-laden love songs to the up-tempo. Her artistry is sensual and soul stirring. A very visual performer, Leah quickly establishes a warm rapport with her audience. Cindy Scott is a rare breed of artist – comfortably covering a variety of music, undaunted by genre barriers and walls that scare lesser singers into pursing a singular line of musical thought. Don’t miss it. Pavilion of the Two Sisters,New Orleans Botanical Garden, City Park.5:00 PM – Gates Open-6:00 PM – Performance Begins.: $10.00 Adults $3.00 Children ages 5-12
Jazz in the park and Marketplace at Louis Armstrong Park preents – Meschiya Lake & The Little Big Horns/To Be Continued Brass Band
Each free show runs from 5PM to 8PM, with an intermission jam-packed with entertainment and authentic New Orleans culture in the form of a second line parade courtesy of The New Skool Brass Band, The Black Feather Mardi Gras Indians, and The Women of Class Social Aid and Pleasure Club.1522 Ursulines Avenue
The Society for German-American Studies (SGAS) will present its annual conference in New Orleans, May 9–12, in collaboration with The Historic New Orleans Collection. This year’s conference will celebrate a German-New Orleans homecoming and German contributions to New Orleans rich culture and history at the Royal Sonesta Hotel. . Registration is open and local rates start at $25. This year’s SGAS conference—held in a different city every year, always with a focus on that place’s German heritage—celebrates a German-New Orleans homecoming. The earliest German settlers to Louisiana arrived in 1721, only three years after the city of New Orleans was founded. Establishing a community upriver from the city, the settlement in and around present-day St. Charles Parish gave rise to that area’s nickname, the “German Coast.” The 19th century saw an influx of immigrants from all across the globe, including Germans, into the city via the port. They brought with them a preference for lager beer, helping it to become a common brew in the city, and they organized large citywide German festivals, such as the city’s first Volksfest held in 1854. New Orleans was even home to the country’s first recorded German theater, noted in the Daily Picayune in 1839. THNOC, which houses an extensive collection of materials relating to the German influence in Louisiana, is proud to welcome SGAS members to the city and to introduce local residents to the national organization.For more information on the conference or to register, visit the SGAS website at http://sgas.org/symposium/.
Friday, May 10
Sippin’ in Seersucker
Don your best seersucker ensemble – or summer chic – for this party that kicks off the summer social season. Hosted by the Shops at Canal Place, the event benefits the Ogden Museum of Southern Art. 6 to 9 p.m.
Partygoers will enjoy complimentary hors d’oeuvres from local restaurants and luscious libations; shopping specials, entertainment, and raffles, including: Entertainment, Shopping, Wine, Be a Tourist in Your Own Hometown, Indulgence and Kohlmeyer Circle Art. There’s even a seersucker ensemble contest! The Legacy Award will be presented to Gina Phillips.Given to a person in the community who has made major contributions to the arts and cultural landscape through education and creative initiatives. Tickets can be purchased online @ http://store.ogdenmuseum.org/
Friday, May 10
“Dorian Rush and Harry Mayronne In Concert” at Mid City Theatre
Dorian Rush and Harry Mayronne In Concert. Pianist Harry Mayronne and singer Dorian Rush return to Mid-City with a mixed bag of jazz, blues, standards, and some of their off-the wall favorites.8p.m. Tickets are $15.Mid City Theatre is at 3540 Toulouse Street — between N. Cortez and Jeff Davis Pkwy…just behind the American Can Company…There is a bar, and free parking all around the building!
NOMA and the Indian Arts Circle of New Orleans are collaborating to present the first ever India Festival from 10 a.m.-4 p.m. at NOMA.
The festival, which will be the largest celebration of India in Louisiana, will incorporate various aspects of Indian culture from the traditional to the modern. Events will include demonstrations, performances, music, art activities, dancing, and more!Please call (504) 658-4100 or visit iacneworleans.com for more information.
Sunday, May 12
SUNDAY GARDEN PARTY presents AMANDA SHAW & THE CUTE GUYS & PAUL SONIAT
On the second Sunday of April, May and June, the New Orleans Botanical Garden and The Backbeat Foundation will host GARDEN PARTY an outdoor concert series on the beautiful Robert B. Haspel Garden Stage. The stage is located in the New Orleans Botanical Garden on the east side of the Pavilion of the Two Sisters. Music lovers will enjoy great music while relaxing on the lawn and savoring the beautiful surroundings of the Botanical Garden. Befitting the setting, the series will focus on Louisiana Roots Music featuring The Iguanas, Amanda Shaw & the Cute Guys, and Eric Lindell plus many more. “Sunday Garden Party” series is sponsored by the Robert and Shirley Haspel Fund.
Robert B. Haspel Outdoor Stage,New Orleans Botanical Garden, City Park. Gates open at 4:00 PM and music starts at 5:00 PM. $10 -More information available at: www.backbeatfoundation.org- or www.garden.neworleanscitypark.