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American Ballet Theatre opened its fall season at City Center, a gala evening marking the beginning of fabulous Alessandra Ferri’s 20th year with ABT and Julie Kent’s anticipated return to the company since she gave birth to her first child in April. Her husband is, of course, the renowned ballet master Victor Barbee. The co-chairs of the opening gathered in the lobby of City Center just moments before the curtain rose, including Muffie Potter Aston in a lavender Carolina Herrera, Cynthia Lufkin in a Louis Vuitton tartan blouse and skirt and Grace Meigher in black silk trimmed with black satin. In the crowd were Blaine Trump in a Badgley Mischka coat, Isabella Rossellini, Lee Radziwill, Pauline Pitt, Anne Grauso, Anne Bass, Susan Fales-Hill, Judy and Sam Peabody and Peggy and Lew Ranieri.

The celebration continued at the Plaza Hotel with a dinner in the Grand Ballroom. Principal dancer Maxim Beloserkovsky and his gorgeous wife, Irina Dvorovenko, wearing a half-million dollars worth of Graff diamonds, were the stars of the dinner. Half a million dollars in diamonds being a little too hard to ignore. You will be thrilled to hear that the gala raised over half a million dollars, which is also hard to ignore.

This story first appeared in the October 27, 2004 issue of WWD.  Subscribe Today.

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George Clooney and his sweetie Lisa Snowdon, who lives and works in London, have decided not to let miles and miles between them keep them apart and are giving love another chance. Lisa is making a point of flying over to see George for at least a few days every two weeks, but when is he flying over to see her? Anyhow, the two of them are so happy and comfortable together that it’s starting to show on George’s waistline. Lisa says he has stopped working out and has gained a few pounds, so she put him on a diet. It’s all so sweet.

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Rod Stewart and his ex, Alana Stewart (she was once Alana Hamilton when she was married to George Hamilton) are thrilled to teeny, tiny bits to announce the engagement of their beautiful 25-year-old daughter, Kimberly Stewart, to rocker Cisco Adler, music producer Lou Adler’s son. Kimberly is flashing a flashing engagement ring and saying, “He’s my best friend, my lover, my soul mate. He really is my everything.” May the marriage last longer than that quote.

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The following is a quote from Tuesday’s New York Times: “Showing that money can still be made in the old-line industries, the turnaround specialist Wilbur L. Ross is selling a steel company that he created over the last two years in a deal that could create a profit of more than $2 billion for himself and his shareholders.

“Mr. Ross entered the steel industry in 2002 when his buyout firm W. L. Ross & Company made a $325 million offer for a shuttered Cleveland steel mill. Five deals, almost $2.2 billion and less than three years later, Mr. Ross is selling the company for $4.5 billion and pocketing a personal stake in the new company worth nearly $3 million.” These have surely been banner years for Wilbur Ross. Along with all his business success, he very recently married Hilary Geary, of New York and Southampton society, and their huge wedding party at the Rainbow Room drew a crowd glittering enough for any billionaire and his bride.

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Mayor Michael Bloomberg, frightfully debonair in white tie, along with the Duchess of Marlborough in an elegant black Armani suit with a silver fox stole and an enormous crystal and diamond broach pinned to her shoulder; Princess Michael of Kent, in a white blouse and gray plaid suit; Julia Koch wrapped in a seemingly endless chain of diamonds around her throat that dropped to her waist; Joan Rivers in a red tweed coat with a sable collar by Escada, and Deborah Norville in pale pink led the fashion parade at the Society of Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center’s 16th Anniversary Preview Party for the International Fine Art & Antique Dealers’ Show. At least 1,200 guests swept in to be greeted by the society’s president, Coco Kopelman, in a black-and-white tweed jacket by Chanel with a diamond star-shaped necklace. Nan Kempner, who never misses anything if she can help it, perched on a stool in a black knit top over a leopard printed skirt. Others in the throng included Jamie Niven, Prince Dimitri of Yugoslavia, Jamee Gregory, Mercedes Bass, Cynthia Phipps, Joanne de Guardiola in Yves Saint Laurent’s silk wrap top with a mink lined collar and a silver silk leopard printed skirt, Michael Vollbracht of Bill Blass, Muffie Potter Aston in a black Gucci silk suit (she told her friends that her twin girls are expected in January), Susan Burke, Anne Bass, Cynthia and Dan Lufkin, Karen LeFrak, Barbara de Portago, and on and on into the night. Calvin Klein was there, too, saying he had his eye on a $450,000 antique chest that he thought would look good in his Southampton house. Yes, but is he sure?

There was $500 million worth of the finest art and antiques from three continents on display and a special booth marking the 50th anniversary of the National Antique & Art Dealers Association of America. Best of all, the society raised almost a million dollars to further its good works. All that and the mayor, too.

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