BY DONNA SHOR
Diahann Carroll, Jane Curtin, Delia
Reese, Loretta Swit and The Lion Kings
Julie Taymor, five groundbreakers in music,
film, theater and television, joined the
National Museum of Women in the Arts'
20th anniversary celebrations. After short
video biographies of these gutsy women,
- each with a strong point of view - they
took questions from the audience, with
Kathleen Matthews moderating. Seen:
Sam and Jan Smith Donaldson, Bonnie
McElveen-Hunter, Mary Mochary, Philip
Wine, Carol and Climis Lascaris, Myrna Col ley-Lee (Mrs. Morgan Freeman), Irene
Natividad and the Museum founder and president, Wilhelmina Holladay and her
daughter-in-law Winton Holladay.
One of the spiciest evenings in town raised funds for one ofWashington's most quietly
deserving charities: Mary's Center for Maternal and Child Care. PBS newsman Ray Suarez, La
Romana's scorching salsas, the Tobias Dinastia dancers and a great dinner (tender hunks of
filet, nothing "mignon" here) raised $250K, said Center founder and CEO Maria Gomez.
DISHING ON THE PRESIDENT
Connie Carter chaired the Woodrow Wilson House reception opening The Presidential Dish, a
re-creation of Mrs. Wilson's White House China Room with 130 pieces of rare presidential
porcelain in widely varying patterns. That weird red ice-cream plate topped by a scupted gold
snowshoe landed in Lucy Hayes' cabinet after husband Rutherford B. - the president who
pulled the last Union troops out of the South - celebrated unification with china picturing
the four U.S. compass points and snowshows meaning "north."
THE SPANISH INFANTA
Stately Princess Elena, daughter of King Juan Carlos I of Spain and Queen Sophia,
opened the National Portrait Gallery's Legacy: Spain and the United States in the Age
of Independence:1763-1848. At this don't-miss exhibit, magnificent paintings of the
American and Spanish notables involved and the accompanying texts remind us of the help
Spain gave us in winning our Revolutionary War. Infanta Elena, who spoke authroitatively
and warmly to the guests, is now fourth in line to the throne after her brother, Crown
Prince Felipe, and the two daughters born to him and his wife Letizia, Princess of Asturias,
a former television journalist.
IT'S ALL RELATIVE
Two family tales, one royal, one noble: At the National Portrait Gallery reception
with Infanta Elena, we learned that Sandy Stackelburg, son of the late
Washington personality, Baroness Garnett Stackelburg, shared the same
godmother with Elena's brother the Prince of Asturias.Through her husband
Constantine ("Steno") Stackelburg, Garnett was related to the Spanish
royal house (as well as those of England, Greece, and Sweden), son Sandy and
the crown prince had as godmother Victoria Eugenia, wife of Alexander
XIII, and Queen of Spain. There was another "relative
connection" at Barbara and Chiswell Dabney Langhorn Jr's cocktail party, "Shaken, Not Stirred," benefiting the
privately funded Trees For Georgetown. The first Chiswell Dabney Langhorne
of Virginia fathered five celebrated beauties. One sister married artist
Charles Dana Gibson, and became the model for his "Gibson Girl," the legendary -
but discreetly covered - "pin-up" of a century ago. Sister Nancy left Virginia for England,
became the wife of Lord Waldorf Astor and scored fame as Lady Astor, the first woman
seated in the English parliament. And, said "Chillie" (Chiswell) Langhorne,
through two great-grandmother sisters, yet another Washingtonian is also in the loop - his
first cousin, Tandy Dickerson. Ancestor Astor, a no-nonsense American and tart-tongued
firebrand, was famous for her put-downs: On her hapless husband: "I married
beneath me. All women do." And when hard-drinking Winston Churchill was invited to her
costume ball he asked what would be his best disguise and she answered, "Come sober, Mr.
Prime Minister, come sober."
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