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EXIT STRATEGY: Gucci Group is once again promoting from within. Sources in Europe said Oliver Yang, Gucci Group’s general manager for Europe and the Middle East, will leave that post at the end of April for another job opportunity. Word has it that Alberto Da Passano, chief financial officer at Yves Saint Laurent, has been tapped to take over the position. Da Passano worked as Gucci Group controller before becoming cfo of YSL. Gucci declined comment.
OF A FEATHER: Kylie Minogue’s “Show Girl” tour kicks off Saturday in Glasgow — literally — with a centerpiece costume worthy of the Lido or the Moulin Rouge. Designed by John Galliano, it boasts a crystal-pavéd corset fitted by Mr. Pearl and a feather headdress by milliner Stephen Jones. It’s actually the second time Galliano has collaborated with the pop star. “She knows exactly what she wants and goes for it,” Galliano said. “She is hardworking, but fun-loving.” Minogue’s European tour is slated to wrap up in May with a series of performances in London.
THE BIJOU CHRONICLES: Despite her indecent exposure at the PlayStation Portable fashion show Monday night, Bijou Phillips refused to cower in embarrassment the day after. Instead, the wild child wore a see-through, low-cut Sass & Bide coral dress to host Complex Magazine’s Los Angeles Fashion Week event (one of many billed as a “kickoff”) at Spider Club in Hollywood. Phillips said of her Janet Jackson moment: “It was horrible,” but added, “I just laughed it off and walked away. It’s, you know, not a big deal. It happened. I didn’t plan that. I just covered it [her breast] and kept walking.” However, she was glad that at least one audience member appreciated her faux pas: “My boyfriend was like, ‘It was the hottest thing ever! Sweet!’ He obviously is not new to [my breasts].” Phillips’ on-off flame, actor Danny Masterson, chauffeured her to the event, along with fellow host, model Caroline D’Amore. The catwalker, who will be in six shows this week, borrowed Phillips’ aqua Mason halter dress for the event, but quelle diva: When she’s not working, she insists on front-row seats at shows. “It’s being able to see everybody else in the front row and everybody’s reactions. You’re either like, ‘Whatever, I don’t care,’ or you’re like, ‘Oh God!’”
This story first appeared in the March 17, 2005 issue of WWD. Subscribe Today.
Inside, the young Hollywood posse — which included Nicole Richie and DJ AM and Masterson’s “That ’70s Show” cast mate Wilmer Valderama, convened in a corner power booth. The gang sipped Stoli vodka and orange juice while Phillips scarfed down a Burger King hamburger and dirty danced with D’Amore to DJ Samantha Ronson’s beats. For sometime-model Phillips, L.A. Fashion Week is cause to celebrate: “I think it’s a good opportunity for local designers to get their stuff seen, and you know it’s harder for them, so you want to support. I feel like it’s good for America and it’s good for L.A.!”
SCALA SAGA: There’s plenty of drama going on at Milan’s Teatro Alla Scala — but not in the form of Giacomo Puccini operas. Musicians and other theater workers, angered by last month’s firing of superintendent Carlo Fontana, are requesting the resignations of newly tapped superintendent Mauro Meli — as well as famed conductor Riccardo Muti, who’s being blamed for the management shuffle. Worker representatives say they feel left out of the loop on strategic and financial decisions amid dwindling public support for the arts. A union source said the theater lost 16 million euros, or $21.3 million at current exchange rates, in 2004, the same year La Scala reopened to much fanfare after a two-year face-lift. Despite speculation to the contrary, theater and orchestra representatives say Muti hasn’t handed in a resignation letter. But the director has said he’s not directing a concert scheduled for this Friday, thus canceling the event. A spokesman for the orchestra said Muti issued a fax stating that current tensions preclude “the requisites for making music together.”
IN THE MIX: Los Angeles Fashion Week took a more civilized turn Tuesday afternoon when interiors guru Greg Jordan hosted a ladies lunch and Kai Milla trunk show at his West Hollywood home. The Bel-Air set (including Elizabeth Wiatt, Wendy Goldberg, Crystal Lourd and Colleen Bell) convened along with Milla’s power pals, Pauletta Washington (wife of Denzel), Keisha Whittaker (wife of Forrest), LaTonya Jackson (wife of Samuel L.) and Cookie Johnson (wife of Earvin aka Magic). Milla, whose debut collection showed in New York last month, sent out her sheer tops, slim satin skirts and sequined jackets while ladies lunched on Asian-inspired bites in Jordan’s living room. Said the Southern-bred Jordan: “I know the tops are sheer for dramatic effect on runway, but it’s really dramatic in my living room!” For her part, Milla said her creations were inspired by textures, since her husband, Stevie Wonder, who showed up for dessert, helps her choose fabrics. Milla, who is seven months’ pregnant (she wore an Alexander McQueen Empire-waisted dress), said any more events would have to wait awhile. “This may be the last time I’m on my feet.”