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season in full swing. Tuesday night in New York.
I went over to Mona Ackerman and Richard Cohen’s
cocktail party at Mona’s Fifth Avenue apartment that once
belonged to Woolworth heiress Barbara Hutton.
Mrs. Ackerman is a famous hostess in New York, famous for her
ebullience, exuberance and
her Chinese chef so that the moment you step off the elevator
you are greeted by the aroma of brilliant gourmandise. Mr. Cohen,
who is not to be confused with the current much-publicized Mr.
Richard Cohen (husband of Paula Zahn)
who lives several blocks down the avenue where they evicted
redtail hawk Pale
Male. Last night's Richard Cohen is the famous
Washington political pundit whose column can be read locally
in the New
Ackerman, Ari Ackerman, and Richard Cohen
Olivia, and Warren Hoge
Cohen-Ackermans drew a big crowd and naturally lotsa media and
media-oriented individuals in New York: Mort Zuckerman,
Joel Klein and his wife Nicole Seligman,
Patricia Duff and her
daughter Caleigh Perelman (who are leaving
for ten days in India this afternoon), Joan and John
Jakobson, Gil Shiva, Faye Wattleton, Boaz Mazor, Steve Rattner
Mitch and Sarah Rosenthal, Casey Ribicoff and Peter Rogers,
Alice Mason, Marie Brenner, Jim and Cathy Hoge, Nancy Collins,
Warren and Olivia Hoge and their son Nicholas
who is finishing up at Brown; Mort and Linda
Janklow, Peter Allen, Joe Armstrong,
Lynn Nesbit, Alice Mayhew, Toni and Jim Goodale, Jason Epstein,
Ken Auletta and Amanda Urban, Frank Rich and Alex Witchel,
Maureen Dowd, Don Hewitt (who was celebrating his
and Marlyn Berger, and Dominick
Dunne to name only a handful
of the guests.
I stayed long enough sample some of the irresistible hors d’oeuvres and
take a picture of the host and hostess and the hostess’ son Ari
as well as the Hoges and their son Nicholas. Then I was off
to “21” where
Peter Rogers was having a little birthday dinner for his friend Casey
Ribicoff, attended by this writer and Adolfo.
to r.: Taking the cake; Adolfo, Casey Ribicoff, and Peter
I finally got a cab, he warned me it would be a hike for the
thirty blocks down the avenue but it turned out to be a quickie. “21” was
jammed to the product-bedecked rafters, just like the days of
yore, as if they’d never left, without an unbooked table
left in the house. I saw Kitty and Bill McKnight at a table for
eight, Bill Rollnick and Nancy Ellison dining with Mr.
and Mrs. Leslie Bricusse, in from Los Angeles, Alex Hitz and Lisa
Fine with George Farias, Joan and Ron Linclau
with Ann Barish and Jim Power
will be a memorial for the great American baritone Robert Merrill, one
of the Opera world’s leading lujminaries, as well
as a beloved son of Brooklyn, a top recording artist and devoted
Yankees fan, at The Juilliard School (155 West 65 Street) today
at 2 PM.
Mark Lennihan / AP file
Mr. Merrill passed away on October 23 at his home here in New York City,
due to natural causes. He was 87 years old.
The memorial for the beloved singer will be hosted by Sherrill
Milnes and will feature speakers: appearances and
performances by: Van Cliburn, who has not performed in New York in
more than a decade;
the Honorable Rudy Giuliani, Skitch Henderson, Marion Merrill, Juilliard
President Joseph W. Pelosi, Leontyne Price, Barry Tucker and the NY
Yankees, among others; some of whom will perform.
In recognition of the great artistry of Robert Merrill, and the generosity
of his family and friends, The Robert Merrill Voice Scholarship Fund
has been established at The Juilliard School. The Robert Merrill Voice
Scholarship Fund will allow Juilliard to make scholarship grants, in
the name of the great baritone, to students of the vocal arts, with need
and merit being the only qualifications. Tax-deductible contributions
payable to The Juilliard School for The Robert Merrill Voice Scholarship
Fund can be mailed to Ms. Victoria Brand, Manager of Scholarship Development,
The Juilliard School, 60 Lincoln Center Plaza, New York, New York 10023,
or call (212) 799-5000, ext. 692.
Limited public seating is available for the memorial is open to the
public on a first come first serve, basis. Depending upon availability,
will open at 1:30 PM. For more information please visit www.RobertMerrill.org.