Stanley Weisman and
Michèle Gerber Klein

Catherine Malandrino and
Bernard Aidan

Jill Brooke and Lauren Thierry

Marie-Monique Steckel

Allison Weiss and
Valesca-Guerrand Hermès

A Celebration Of
All Things French

Story by Roger Webster
Photos by Joe Schildhorn/Patrick McMullan

VEN though Doubles Club in the Sherry Netherland was decked out for Chinese New Year, Michèle Gerber Klein, Valesca Guerrand-Hermès and Ruth Stanton hosted a chic cocktail party to launch the French Institute Alliance Française’s La Nuit des Étoiles festival dinner and celebrate Rendez-Vous with French Cinema at Lincoln Center.

Guests included the French Institute Alliance Française’s President Marie-Monique Steckel, Stanley Weisman, Edmée Firth, Beatrice Pei, Wendy Carduner, Elizabeth Kabler, Dana Ackerman, Diane and Allison Weiss, Charles Cecil, WB11 anchor Jim Watkins and his wife Lauren Thierry, Devon Darcangelo, Royce Pinkwater, Jill Brooke and Gary Goldstein, Randall Stempler, MSNBC’s Jennifer Kay, Robin Massee, Neri Castner, Sophie Taubertgehan, Rodhe Noah, Karen and Masha Leon, Dan Rattiner, and Chris Wasserstein.

Sharon Bush, ex-wife of President Bush’s brother Neil told Diane Dunne of the New York Sun, “Just as Condoleezza Rice called on France an Europe to put aside differences with the United States , I’m here tonight to help this cause. I love the United States and France , and I play tennis with Condoleezza Rice who, by the way is a very good tennis player.”

Fashionistas and art world insiders Catherine Malandrino, there with her husband Bernard Aidan, Maggie Norris, Joe Cheng, the Marlborough Gallery’s Janis Cecil, and I-20 Gallery’s Alice Judelson discussed Fashion Week’s interesting art connection –  Christo and Jean Claude’s The Gates project in Central Park.

They also talked about Peter Norton’s amazing art collection in his apartment, overlooking Columbus Circle on the 54th floor of the Trump Place, the night before at a party for the Bronx Museum of the Arts.

Catherine Verret-Vimont, executive director of the French Film Office, spoke about the 10th annual French Film Festival, dubbed Rendez-Vous with French Cinema, which opened March 11 with André Téchiné's 2005 Berlinale Golden Bear competition love drama Les Temps qui Changent (Changing Times), starring Catherine Deneuve and Gérard Depardieu, at the Walter Reade Theater in Lincoln Center. Vive la France and le cinema!

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