Outside the David H. Koch Theater Monday evening, Lincoln Center commuters mulled over CNN alerts that the House Republicans had unveiled their plan for replacing the Affordable Care Act while, inside, a procession of gowns, velvet and furs on their last outing of the season (weather permitting, naturally) were lured into the lobby by the sounds of a harpist at work.
“This is a happy occasion,” bellowed a rotund gentleman, who then scolded more junior guests for being in possession of a cell phone. The young and, er, more wise, mingled for the 13th annual School of American Ballet winter ball, which was presented by Van Cleef & Arpels and designed by Ron Wendt, and featured a post-dinner performance by the ballet students.
“Millennials and anyone even younger, they matter so much to all of us,” said Jean Shafiroff, slipping into long black gloves for a second go-around on the step and repeat. “And of course, it merits a great dress.”
“I’m on the school’s board, and I’ve been on the board for I think a dozen years,” said Chelsea Clinton. “I took ballet at the Washington School of Ballet for many, many years, and when I moved to New York a mutual friend introduced me to someone who was on the board, and I had long been an admirer of the City Ballet, as well as SAB. It is one of the greatest joys of my life.”
As for whether she hopes her daughter might follow in her passion: “Oh, my gosh, she’s only two-and-a-half, but she goes to little ballet and tap class already and she loves it,” Clinton said. “Nothing would make me more grateful if she were to grow up and share my love of ballet. But I care more that she discovers whoever she is and I just get to be along for the journey.”
Across the dance floor, and over the crunch of some shards of broken glass, a woman in a velvet gown was asking Jill Kargman for the name of her tattoo artist. The author and actor said she is confident the graceful dancing gene in her family bypassed her.
“My mom Coco was a ballerina and was an alum of this school — but I’m the worst dancer,” the “Odd Mom Out” star said. “Well, I can rock a nightclub dance floor, but I’m pretty s—-y en pointe. I think it skipped a generation.”