Thursday, August 10, 2006

From the archives . . .

A couple of years ago I was backstage at City Center drawing a black-marker mural on the wall by the stage door. It's a tradition at City Center that, every once in a while, large companies get a little wall space on which they can paint their name and the entire company can sign it. The General Manager of the Martha Graham Company had asked me if I would do a drawing that the company could sign and I ended up doing this really ornate, complicated thing which took two days to complete; I make everything hard, seriously what is my problem?

So there I was, drawing on the wall during the performance.

At intermission, the stage door opened and Karl Lagerfeld appeared, looking like the guy the word "imperious" had been waiting to describe. He was there because his friend, Andre Leon Talley was performing with the company. Andre is the "editor at large" for Vogue magazine and not usually prone to treading the boards with dancers, but there he was, doing the narration for The Owl and the Pussycat and Mr. Lagerfeld was coming back to pay his respects during the break.

Lagerfeld was dressed in velvet and wore a cravat; he sported a stiff collar which might have had its own zip code. His hair was white and his glasses were dark and he was holding a drink close to his body. He briefly acknowledged me as we were introduced and continued on his way upstairs, trailing behind an entourage of hangers-ons who snaked their way through the stage door and up the stairs behind him. It was only an illusion, I am sure, but it seemed to me that Lagerfeld was making his way back down the stairs and to his seat before the tail of the entourage had finished going up the stairs. It might have been the only time the last guy in his group actually got to look him in the face, passing him as he headed back out . . .

It was an impressive sight and it made me wish I had been wearing something other than jeans and a sweatshirt, but I guess we all have our style . . .


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