N THE wake of Fashion Week in New York, Esther on the runway was the theme of the Jewish Museum’s 21st annual masked Purim ball at the Waldorf-Astoria. Sketches by 25 leading designers attempted to show how Esther would appear today as a fashion model.
Picking up on the theme, couturier Isaac Mizrahi narrated the heroic story of Queen Esther in his own fashion.
It seems that two companions, Mordechai and Martin, who thrived as interior decorators in ancient Persia, made a business trip to Korea. They came back with a baby girl whom they raised as Esther. In due time Ahasueros threw a fabulous party, a precursor to the red carpet, to which he invited hundreds of other kings, some of whom were queens.
When Mordy and Marty clashed with the rival fashion house of Haman (the original Devil Wore Prada), they enlisted the help of Esther, now the king’s queen.
"Actually three words saved the Jews – Brazilian bikini wax," as Mizrahi would have it.
"And you thought Purim was about self-sacrifice. Actually Purim is about grooming and styling. Where would the Jews be without hair and makeup?"
There was a redeeming factor to the evening. Gala chairmen Lynn and Glen Tobias reported that Mizrahi’s unorthodox retelling of the Megillah helped them bring in $1.2 million for the Jewish Museum. Director Joan Rosenbaum presented the Mayer Sulzberger Award to Leni May for her service as museum chairman.
The celebrated Italian restaurateur, Sirio Maccioni of the legendary Le Cirque, created an unusual chicken menu for the dinner – and it was completely kosher.