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Tanya and Jean Pillard at the Ellie Fund’s Oscar Party at the Mandarin Oriental. (Photo: Colette Greenstein)

Author: Colette GreensteinTanya and Jean Pillard at the Ellie Fund’s Oscar Party at the Mandarin Oriental.

The hit Broadway musical ‘Mary Poppins’

The Boston Opera House was filled to the rafters for the official opening night of the musical “Mary Poppins.”  It was an interesting combination of press, families and lots of children. I mean lots of kids, but it was kind of cool seeing a show like this through the eyes of children.  

Their excitement was evident as they were waiting for the show to begin. I wasn’t quite sure what to expect, but I found the show to be fun and the music was quite infectious. So much so, that as the first act was coming to a close with the big musical number of “super-califragilisticexpialidocios,” I noticed that I, too, was singing the song to myself and tapping my feet.

And one of the best moments during the show was hearing the kids “oohing and aahing” in wonderment as Mary Poppins and her trusty umbrella took flight into the night. As “adult” as I can be, I guess, I would say, it was a good feeling to just be open to the magic of one of the world’s most famous nannies. Chim Chim Cher-ee …

Sing Song with Bobby McFerrin

I didn’t really know a lot about Bobby McFerrin other than he wrote the popular song “Don’t Worry, Be Happy.” But I must say he is a very talented man. He was in town as part of a weeklong residency at the Berklee College of Music and performed an improvisational program with an ensemble of 22 students, who sang their butts off, without a back-up band or orchestra, no less.  It was crazy to see how McFerrin used his body as an instrument. Absolutely amazing. The musical conductor that he is, he was able to engage the audience so they became part of his performance. Now, I see why his song “Don’t Worry, Be Happy” had such a feel-good effect on people.

Bare Your Soul Weekends

I had a fantastic time at the first night of  “Bare Your Soul Weekends” at Darryl’s Corner Bar and Kitchen.  I got a chance to catch up with old friends from my days at UMass Amherst and DJ Reggie B found his groove with a combination of classic hip hop and RandB music. He followed it with a quick house set that brought me to the dance floor.

Kicking off the night was Body by Brandy’s Brandy Cruthird and RandB chanteuse Athene Wilson, and of course, the night wouldn’t be complete without a little noshing on the fried Rhode Island calamari with pickled peppers and spicy tomatoes. They hit the spot!

Oscar Night Boston Gala to benefit The Ellie Fund

I sashayed into the Mandarin Oriental to begin celebrating Hollywood’s biggest night (yes, in Boston) with The Ellie Fund’s 15th Annual Oscar Night ® Gala. By the time I arrived, the black-tie affair was in full swing with the several hundred guests mingling, drinking, eating and primping for a little camera time with WCVB-TV’s J.C. Monahan and Bianca de la Garza.  

The guests were treated to 14 chef stations with more food than you can imagine from area restaurants including Aquitaine Boston, Basho, Island Creek Oysters, L’Espalier, Morton’s The Steakhouse and many more. As I made my way around the ballroom everyone seemed to be celebrating the night Hollywood style with plates of food and flutes of champagne, courtesy of Moet and Chandon.  

I scanned the crowd and spotted designer Nara Paz with her very statuesque model Morgan Furber, (who is the new face of Nara Paz International); 6one7’s nightlife impresario Ace Gershfield and his lovely girlfriend Tally Philosophe; Boston Casting’s Angela Peri; former New England Revolution player Taylor Twellman and WCVB-TV’s Karen Holmes-Ward, David Brown and Susan Wornick.

The night was capped with fabulous mini cupcakes in flavors of strawberry daiquiri, crème brulee, piña colada and junior mint — all courtesy of Cakeology — and decadent chocolate mousse from the Hard Rock Café Boston. The whole night was not only a celebration of the Oscars, but it was also a night in support of The Ellie Fund which is a nonprofit organization that fights breast cancer and eases its effect on women and families across Massachusetts. As guests left with their swag bags in tow, Boston did right by Hollywood with an evening to remember.

Coming Up

Tonight (March 3), it’s An Evening with Athene Wilson in a performance to support The Community Benefits Program at The House of Blues Foundation Room, beginning at 6 p.m.

First Fridays Boston kicks off the weekend at Caprice Ultra Lounge this Friday, March 4 in association with the Young Professionals Network of the Urban League.

Shaquille O’Neal Presents All-Star Comedy Jam at the Wilbur Theatre for two shows this Saturday, March 5 at 7 p.m. and 10 p.m.

Janet Jackson comes to town with her Number Ones: Up Close and Personal Tour Tuesday, March 15 at the Citi Performing Arts Center.

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