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March 10, 2015

Video and photos: Derek Zoolander and Hansel walk at Valentino autumn–winter 2015–16

Lucire staff/19.22

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Pascal Le Segretain

Ben Stiller and Owen Wilson, playing Derek Zoolander and Hansel from their roles in the 2001 hit film Zoolander, appeared to spontaneous applause at Paris Fashion Week, where Paris editor Lola Cristall is compiling her full report.
   The pair appeared on the catwalk at the Valentino ready-to-wear autumn–winter 2015–16 show, and posed with their “blue steel” looks—a term popularized by the movie about the fictional male model, Derek Zoolander.
   Stiller wrote and directed the original film, and it remains well known within the fashion industry.
   A sequel will be released on February 12, 2016.
   Stiller and Wilson posed with Vogue editor-in-chief Anna Wintour backstage.



Pascal Le Segretain

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March 8, 2015

A traditional tale told well

Lola Cristall/23.45

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The tale of The Legend of Mulan made its way in revitalized form to the David H. Koch Theater in March for a limited time at Lincoln Center for the Performing Arts in New York. The Hong Kong Dance Company (HKDC) brings its expertise to the stage for the first time outside Asia. The China Arts and Entertainment Group (CAEG) presents the flawless production, an adventurous tale of audacity and stimulating depth. The intricately detailed, traditional costumes are designed by Hong Kong-based designers, with eye-catching workmanship.
   The enticing story, derived from ancient China, was originally in the form of a poem, entitled The Ballad of Mulan, in the fifth century. Many years later, the story, about a youthful peasant girl, Fa Mulan (花木蘭), who disguises herself as a man in order to take her father’s place as a combatant in the army, lives on. There is a yin-yang effect: Mulan’s beauty and refinement unites with her inner strength and vigour. As both warrior and maiden, Mulan symbolizes a true heroine, underlining her courage and aptitude. In many ways, the protagonist’s gender is simply an unimportant factor as she proves her strength and will to fight.
   The overall performance is a beautiful creation, combining theatre and culture on an international stage.—Lola Cristall, Paris Editor





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March 4, 2015

Royal New Zealand Ballet stages an entertaining, memorable Don Quixote

Jack Yan/12.40

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Evan Li


Royal New Zealand Ballet

Top Mayu Tanigaito and Kohei Iwamoto as Kitri and Basilio. Above A Barcelona town square scene as pictured in the programme.

It’s always a pleasure to kick off a Royal New Zealand Ballet season on a high. Don Quixote, which opened at the St James in Wellington tonight, takes the well known ballet, set to the music of Ludwig Minkus, and tweaks it for modern audiences.
   It is a restaging of the 2008 production of Don Quixote by the Royal New Zealand Ballet. The choreography by Adrian Burnett, after Marius Petipa, is intact, as are the concept, sets and costumes as conceived by former artistic director Gary Harris, with tiny tweaks to keep audiences entertained (watch for the sailors’ selfie in the third act). Sharon the mechanical dog is still there to delight younger audience members, and the story is particularly easy to follow; while ballet veterans can enjoy the talent of the new dancers, particularly Kohei Iwamoto and Mayu Tanigaito as Basilio and Kitri respectively.
   The design brings the seventeenth-century story, and the nineteenth-century ballet, more firmly into the twentieth century, with Don Quixote donning an aviator’s cap and jacket, bringing his mop with him, taking the place of Rocinante, the horse. There are plenty of Iberian references in the bright costumes and the hairstyles, as well as the choreography, with flourishes in the movement and fans recalling flamenco dances, even if the structure of the ballet remains very Russian.
   The Don’s bedroom and the Barcelona town square contrast each other: the former is packed with books, darkening the set, while the latter is bright and airy, suggesting a seaside location. Nigel Gaynor conducted a faultless Orchestra Wellington.
   John Hull makes for an entertaining Don Quixote, with big shoes to fill—Sir Jon Trimmer delighted audiences in 2008—but it is the remaining roles which confirm a few accepted ideas about performance. The first is that it’s often more delicious playing a villain, as Paul Mathews steps back into the role of Gamache, complete with his pet dog, while Abigail Boyle tonight played Mercedes. This pair gave captivating performances, especially Mathews in each of the three acts; he and Boyle almost upstaged the others in the first scene of the third act, as they returned to Barcelona after robbing the Don. As Gamache gets drunk, Mathews dances accordingly—and it’s often harder to pull that off than performing traditional moves.
   Dulcinea appears briefly in the dream sequence after the robbery takes place, and less is made of her role.
   The second idea is that if you get the subsidiary characters right, the production will feel more fulfilled, and Shane Urton’s performance as the Don’s nephew, Sancho, had a wonderful and intentional naïveté as he accompanies his uncle on the adventure. Urton stayed in character till the end, and enriched the ballet no end.
   The third idea is that audiences will always welcome a happy-ending love story. Tanigaito already received applause in the first act for a series of fouettés, but it was her pas de deux with Iwamoto in the third act, and his dramatic catch, where the attention rested firmly again on Basilio and Kitri. With increasing energy on stage from the courting couple, Don Quixote finished on an expected high.
   Don Quixote will continue in Wellington till March 7, before moving to Christchurch for March 11–14, Invercargill for March 18, Dunedin for March 21, Auckland for March 26–9, and Palmerston North for its final performance on April 1. Further information can be found at the RNZB’s website at www.rnzb.org.nz.—Jack Yan, Publisher

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February 27, 2015

Debbie does glamping

Elyse Glickman/12.38

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Igor Spektor

In a very friendly, relaxed and airy Stardust Penthouse atop the Beverly Hilton, guests of Debbie Durkin’s 2015 edition of the Eco Luxe Oscar Style Lounge could receive posh perk-ups, including blow-drys, organic spray tans and make-up touch-ups by OC Hair & Makeup. Celebrity pets were treated to eco-friendly goodies from Canadog and other vendors.
   Choices Recovery was the very timely charitable focus of the event, and reps from the organization were on hand to educate and raise awareness of the options that exist for those struggling with substance abuse. To set the mood, Durkin’s team joined forces with innovative company Under Canvas, known for its retreat packages to such healing destinations in the US as Moab, Yellowstone and Glacier National Parks. The hotel penthouse was transformed into a glamorous camping-style escape (hence ‘glamping’) with stylish hunting lodge-chic décor. Élan Event Rentals, LBPS Events and Frances Lynn Creative Florals provided beautiful assistance in setting the mood for both the day- and night-time festivities (hosted by Real Housewives of Orange County cast member Gretchen Christine Rossi and Chris Booker of AMP Radio).
   Attendees included nominees and winners from the crews of films such as American Sniper, The Theory of Everything, Guardians of the Galaxy, The Hobbit and Whiplash. They included Ben Wilkins (Oscar winner, Whiplash, for best sound mixing), Elise Robertson (Oscar nominee, American Sniper), Elizabeth Yianni-Georgiou (Oscar nominee, Guardians of the Galaxy, for make-up and hairstyling), Jason Canovas (Oscar nominee, The Hobbit, for sound editing), Lisa Bruce (producer of The Theory of Everything), Kevin Sorbo (Hercules), philanthropist Nancy Davis (Race to Erase MS), Carolyn Hennesy (Revenge), Ken Davitian (Borat), Christian Oliver (Alarm für Cobra 11: die Autobahnpolizei), Amanda Adrienne, Claudia Wells, Kelly Perine, Jillian Murray, Craig Scime, Cassandra Michaels, Daisy Jacobs, Suzan Brittan, Adina Porter, May Wang, Andrea Bogart, and our friends Donna Spangler and Richie Benveniste.
   Daytime guests stopped by for make-up, spray tans and hair touch-ups from nationwide mobile company OC Hair & Make-up, stocked up on pet gear from CanaDog and KD Pet Protector, and canine babysitting services from Gardena-based Camp Run-a-Mutt. VIPs left with gift bags containing gift certificates for dog collars by Let There Be Collars and complimentary services at Animal Healing & Wellness. Humans got certificates for free candles at Sugar Mint Candle Co. and complimentary sessions at Body & Brain Yoga in Burbank.—Elyse Glickman, US West Coast Editor, and Leyla Messian, LA Correspondent







































Igor Spektor



Israel David Groveman

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February 21, 2015

The most talked-about film of the month: Fifty Shades of Grey

Lucire staff/3.07

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A week has passed since the release of the cinematic adaptation of E. L. James’s Fifty Shades of Grey.
   If you haven’t seen the film directed by Sam Johnson-Taylor, starring Jamie Dornan and Dakota Johnson, you may be the small part of the population who is choosing to ignore the hype.
   In a nutshell, the movie is about Christian Grey (Dornan) and Anastasia Steele (Johnson), who are from completely different worlds. He is wealthy, sophisticated and seems as though he has his life together, while Anastasia is about to finish university with an arts’ degree and hasn’t really given any thought as to what her next step is going to be. They meet by chance, and, boom, you see Mr Grey fall in love with Miss Steele instantly. It is a classic love story with a twist, in the sense that Mr Grey has ‘singular taste’ when it comes to his sexual tendencies. He introduces Miss Steele, a virgin, to a world of power, dominance and at times, cruelty, but as the movie progresses, you see a different side to Mr Grey. He genuinely seems to be falling in love with Miss Steele, but he cannot bear to bring himself to say it, or feel it. ‘I have had a rough start in life,’ he tells her and, ‘I’m not the man for you; you should stay away from me.’ But she doesn’t. She presses on, she is determined to uncover what his “issues” are and how she can help him heal, in a sense. But there are dark moments, too. You see Mr Grey falling apart because he simply doesn’t know how to respond emotionally to Miss Steele’s needs, so he responds in the only way he knows how to: through BDSM. Sure, his BDSM is a turn-on for her, and she’s willing to explore his world, but she doesn’t understand why he’s not willing to explore hers—and that’s when it gets messy. You have give Miss Steele credit: she has that fire and spark that Mr Grey loves, and yet, he has no idea how to be a ‘hearts and flowers man’ and as he plainly tells her, ‘I’m fifty shades of f***ed up.’
   Dakota Johnson was made for this role. She steals every scene with her lightness, naïveté, her interest in exploring her sexuality and for wanting to help the man she loves find his way to her world. Jamie Dornan is the brooding Grey, all dark and mysterious, but you get the sense that there is so much more to him and his story than he is willing to share, and that’s the beauty of this series. We find out why he is the way he is, and in the end, we want to be able to answer the age old question: is love enough to save someone?
   If you want a thought-provoking movie, go see it; don’t be intimidated by other people’s reviews and make your own judgements. Mr Grey will see you now.—Snjezana Bobič

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February 19, 2015

Olly Murs is Top Gear’s next Star in a Reasonably Priced Car

Lucire staff/12.23

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BBC

Essex-born singer-songwriter Olly Murs is Top Gear’s next Star in a Reasonably Priced Car, with the BBC releasing photographs from next Sunday’s (February 22, 2015) episode.
   Murs is pictured along with the Stig, and behind the wheel of the red Vauxhall Astra that celebrities have been taking around the long-running TV show’s test track since 2013.
   Murs first came to prominence as a contestant on The X Factor, where he finished runner-up in the 2009 series. Madame Tussauds has even made a likeness of him for its exhibit.
   His latest album, Never Been Better, was released last November and débuted at number one on the UK albums’ chart.
   US actor Aaron Paul currently heads the leaderboard among the stars who have driven the Vauxhall Astra.





BBC

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To the Oscars with love: Doris Bergman’s 2015 Valentine Romance style lounge

Elyse Glickman/11.54

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KVR Creative/courtesy Doris Bergman

Even if seasoned Hollywood PR pro and impresario Doris Bergman asks for feedback on her events, the truth is that with her Oscar-Valentine and Emmy events, she consistently “knocks them out of the park” (as we say in the baseball-crazy USA). Once again, West Hollywood’s Fig & Olive restaurant played host to the Seventh Annual Valentine Romance Oscar Style Lounge & Party, and the vibe was friendly, appetizing (lots of fresh-from-the-oven goodies from F&O’s kitchen) and quite stylish for both the celebrities and attending press.
   Seven, however, proved to be particularly charming for Doris, not only with her mix of guests and products, but also lots of surprises. While her roster of talent (including Rosa Blasi, Sofia Milos, Deidre Hall, James Kyson Lee, Lisa Vidal, Lisa Ann Walter, Kelsey Scott, Carolyn Hennesy, Rénée Taylor, Joe Bologna, and Greg Grunberg) enjoyed this favourite family reunion of sorts, the icing on the Valentine’s Day cupcake was a visit from LA’s enduring designer Sue Wong. While her selection of dresses for the A-listers dazzled, it was a whole other matter when the belle of the ball strolled in to witness for herself celebrities falling in love with her artistry all over again.
   As Sue and Doris greeted each other, it suddenly hit me that both women have a lot in common, including making every invited guest to their soirées feel welcome, accepted, well fed and fashionable. The motherly love exuded at the event provided a perfect backdrop for official charity Wednesday’s Child. KTTV Fox 11 News’s Los Angeles presenter Christine Devine was present to support and answer questions about her signature cause beyond her weekly local broadcasts. Celebrities were encouraged to bring new, unwrapped gifts, including clothing, accessories, electronics, sporting equipment, monetary donations, etc., for a post-holiday gift drive for teens currently living in foster care.
   The returning and still fabulous perennials filling out the Fig & Olive garden included MDSun USA skin care, Silvana K Designs jewellery, Arbonne Essentials’ nutrition products, Spongelle bath products, Kama Sutra, Twisted Silver by Debra Mitchell, Single by Galina Sobolev, Telic (with new bling accessories), and Model in a Bottle (now with a sensitive skin formula).
   Although Samiah appeared at a certain Golden Globes event a few weeks ago, and in spite of the fact that the mercury hit 30°C (86°F), the bespoke coat designer showed her presence could stand up to a seasoned veteran like Sue Wong in both her artistry with fabric and her ease with guests from all walks of life. Shangri-La of Luxury helped clear the air for prosperity with delicious home and body fragrances, as did candles from the new Burbank boutique Shoppe 815. Beauty mavens could rejoice with an opportunity to test out all-natural hair care from Pura d’Or and the Kelley West Microderm360° Dermabrasion Tool and skin care line. Another motherly touch: the rep encouraged guests to use it responsibly and check out special demos at microderm360.com/ before putting this Home Shopping Network best seller to work.—Elyse Glickman, US West Coast Editor



































































KVR Creative/courtesy Doris Bergman

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February 11, 2015

Olga Kurylenko, Nastassja Kinski, Emma Heming-Willis, Lilly zu Sayn-Wittgenstein-Berleburg celebrate divas at Berlinale

Lucire staff/12.45

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Franziska Krug/Getty Images

Bulgari’s Diva Cinema Night at the Berlinale, the Berlin International Film Festival, on Tuesday celebrated divas past and present with an exclusive party at the Metropolpark in the German capital.
   The event celebrated divas including Elizabeth Taylor, Marilyn Monroe, Sophia Loren, Anita Ekberg and Grace Kelly, and their connection to the world of film. Modern actresses were also celebrated by co-sponsor Bulgari, including Carla Bruni, Jennifer Garner, Sharon Stone, Keira Knightley and Naomi Watts.
   Notable VIPs included Olga Kurylenko, Nastassja Kinski and Lilly zu Sayn-Wittgenstein-Berleburg, as well as Anna Maria Muehe, Julia Dietze, Emma Heming-Willis, Sonja Kerskes, Paz de la Huerta, Sanny van Heteren, Tanja Bülter, Natascha Ochsenknecht, Chiara Schoras, Nicolai Kinski, Ina Paule Klink, Kweku Mandela, Lelio Gavazza, Sandra Mohsni, Natalia Avelon, Shermine Sharivar, and Alessandra Mastronardi.
   With Bulgari, unsirprisingly Elizabeth Taylor’s starring role in Cleopatra, resplendent with jewellery, were among the memories shared during the evening. BMW was the event’s second sponsor, countering the festival’s partnership with rival Audi. DJ Nick Cohen performed at the do, while Moët & Chandon served champagne.











Franziska Krug/Getty Images

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