The irony was not lost on the fashion-loving crowd that packed the Barker Hangar in Santa Monica on Thursday night at the 27th Annual Macy's Passport party. It was bittersweet to see 77-year-old Dame Elizabeth Taylor being wheeled out onto the catwalk to a standing ovation.
Liz can no longer walk and she had a cold last night, too, but she's still one tough lady, reminding the audience that HIV and AIDS are still rampant throughout the planet.
"As my beloved friend Michael said, 'we are the world." And it is up to us to take care of those who are sick and dying, in this country and particularly in Africa," she said. "We must do everything we can to save this continent where we all came from."
Michael's sister LaToya was in the house, along with a variety of celebrities. Eva LaRue, Kate Levering, and AnnaLynne McCord along with Kathy Ireland, Alex Meneses, Gina Ravera, and Nicole Murphy were all on hand to support the cause. Well-known guys made the glittery scene, too, including "Heroes" star Jimmy Jean-Louis, "Dancing with the Stars" veteran Gilles Marini, hair guru Jose Eber, and celebrity stylist George Blodwell.
Sharon Stone, the AMFAR world ambassador and perennial host of the Macy's Passport event, took to the stage and as usual worked her magic, convincing attendees to donate more cash, addind to the $28 million-plus that the event has raised over the years.
"Will you be a part of our team?" she begged, offering up $5000 to start the giving. Hairdresser Chaz Dean was the first to jump onto the runway and pledge, followed by McCord, Meneses, and, after a slightly odd hesitation, LaToya Jackson too. Stone then went on to raise $1000 and $500 donations from a passel of givers, then the fashion show began, with styles by Rachel Ray, Hugo Boss, Harajuku Lovers, American Rag, Calvin Klein, and others rocking the catwalk.
And you know it's a good party for a good cause when the finale includes a buff guy in his Papi brand underwear, with a white python wrapped around his neck. Where else can you see that, while fighting AIDS in the process?