The newly renovated Plaza Hotel Ballroom doesn’t exactly scream “intimate acoustic performance space,” but that’s exactly what guests received Thursday evening at the first annual Society of Memorial Sloan Kettering Spring Ball, sponsored by Bulgari.
After cocktails (during which Michelle Williams of Destiny’s Child made a brief appearance before heading to another party), a lamb dinner and a live auction by Jamie Niven that helped contribute to the $2.9 million raised that night, chairs and attendees like Muffie Potter Aston, Tory Burch, Coco Kopelman, Jennifer Creel, Dayssi Olarte de Kanavos, Bryant Gumbel and Elizabeth Lindemann were treated to a live, high-energy performance by Natasha Bedingfield. Never mind that many in the room had never heard of the Grammy-nominated singer.
“What does she sing?” queried Grace Hightower to a tablemate. “I have no idea who she is,” laughed Jamee Gregory. “Muffie brought her up in the [event] meeting and no one knew her. We are all so out of it.”
Unlike many such pairings, though, Bedingfield had a personal reason for her session that night.
“My grandmother died of cancer,” explained the songstress, who changed from a crimson Calvin Klein dress to latex leggings and a white t-shirt for her performance. “And I feel like my industry is so selfish.”