ROYALS ON THE BEACH: A wacky San Francisco institution can rack up another royal visitor. “Beach Blanket Babylon,” the madcap musical comedy review that’s been running at Club Fugazi for 31 years, gave a special performance for the Prince of Wales and the Duchess of Cornwall Sunday night, giving them perhaps the most off-beat evening of their recent trip Stateside.
When the prince and duchess arrived, flanked by San Francisco’s chief of protocol, Charlotte Mailliard Shultz, and her husband, former Secretary of State George Shultz, they took a few minutes for an unscheduled grip-and-grin in the audience. Local luminaries in their vicinity included Ann and Gordon Getty; Mayor Gavin Newsom and his wife, Kimberly; novelist Danielle Steele; events planner Stanlee Gatti, and socialite Denise Hale.
But no one was more excited about the opportunity to touch royalty than Cindy Asner, wife of Ed Asner and aunt of mayor Newsome. Asner literally crawled on her knees across a row of chairs towards the prince, only to be rebuffed by his security. Undaunted, she dodged and bobbed her way through the crowd until, sure enough, a minute later she could be seen talking to the prince and gesticulating with antic energy. Eventually the show began, and it included a nod to the guests of honor, with the lead character, Snow White, singing, “We’re honored, your Highness/We hope your visit is the finest,/The Duchess is so charming,/Does she share your passion for organic farming?”
After the performance, the royal couple went backstage to congratulate the cast and producer Jo Schuman Silver, widow of “Beach Blanket” creator Steve Silver. As Silver reported at a small dinner in the Getty’s kitchen later that evening, Charles and Camilla took time to speak to every cast member. “He said the show was marvelous,” recalled Silver, who got a standing ovation when she walked into the Getty manse. “And he said, ‘I recall having been here before.'” Silver reminded him that he had accompanied the Queen on her visit to San Francisco in 1983, when the play was first staged. “You mean my mother?” he replied.
PARTYING HARD IN TEXAS: Evidently the folks down in San Antonio can’t get enough of Roberto Cavalli — or at least his hospitality. At the Cavalli charity event at Saks Fifth Avenue last week, guests partied well into the night while boogieing away with the designer on the dance floor. But in cleaning up afterward, staff found one reveler who had gone a bit too far — she had passed out and her makeup had run so much it not only stained, but ruined, some of the furniture rented for the Cavalli lounge.