Dance Stance

By Richard Mineards   |   March 15, 2018
Amanda Thomas and Jenna Rogers from event sponsor Mission Wealth with dancers from Compañia Nacional de Danza (photo by Isaac Hernandez)

Superlatives are not sufficient to describe the Spanish National Dance Company’s performance of Swedish choreographer Johan Inger‘s Carmen at the Granada.

The 39-year-old Madrid-based troupe, who last dazzled us six years ago, showed why the quintessentially Spanish work has become one of the most talked-about new ballets of the decade with Japan-born Kayoko Everhart dazzling in the principal role under artistic director Jose Carlos Martinez.

Local residents Richard and Annette Caleel, Robert and Margo Cohen-Feinberg, Morrie and Irma Jurkowitz, Barbara Stupay, and Mission Wealth, are to be congratulated for bringing us such a stupendous UCSB Arts & Lectures show combining the instantly recognizable music of Bizet with Rodion Shchedrin and Marc Alvarez, one of just three stops on the company’s U.S. tour.

It is no wonder the production won the coveted Prix Benois de la Danse for choreography, an international ballet competition that awards prizes of $1 million to a lucky few.

It was all too glorious for words.

Judi and Harry Weisbart with a dancer from Compañia Nacional de Danza (photo by Isaac Hernandez)

Cashing in

Our Eden by the Beach, as usual, is well represented in the 32nd Forbes rankings of the world’s wealthiest people, with Bill Gates, 62, being toppled from top position by Amazon’s Jeff Bezos, 54, with $122 billion, $32 billion more than the Microsoft tycoon who is number two.

Warren Buffett, 87, a partner with Montecito’s Charlie Munger in Berkshire Hathaway, follows with $84 billion, while Oracle magnate Larry Ellison, 73, who has three homes in our rarefied enclave, is number 10 with $58.5 billion, up from $52.2 billion in 2017.

Google honcho Eric Schmidt, 62, who lives on TV talk-show host Ellen DeGeneres‘s former estate, is ranked 106 with $13.4 billion, up from $11.1 billion last year, while Star Wars director George Lucas,73, who has a beach house in Carpinteria near Oscar winner Kevin Costner and TV talk-show host Conan O’Brien, is at number 372 with $5.2 billion.

Developer Rick Caruso, 59, whose Miramar hotel complex is scheduled to open this summer, is at 572 with $3.9 billion, while TV talk-show empress Oprah Winfrey, 64, and Beanie Baby billionaire Ty Warner, 73, are tied at 887 in the rankings with $2.7 billion – an increase for him, a decrease for her.

There are 2,208 billionaires on the list with a total worth of $9.1 trillion, up 18 percent from 2017.

What’s Cookin’

Celebrity TV chef Anthony Bourdain will be the featured guest at UCSB Arts & Lectures annual benefit at Santa Barbara Historical Museum on May 9, I can exclusively reveal.

Vassar College dropout Bourdain, 61, wrote the 2000 best-selling book Kitchen Confidential: Adventures in the Culinary Underbelly and currently hosts CNN’s Anthony Bourdain: Parts Unknown, as well as having been a guest judge on Bravo’s Top Chef and ABC’s The Taste.

A 1978 graduate of the Culinary Institute of America, he was executive chef at Brasserie Les Halles, a Park Avenue eatery I would frequent often when I lived in New York’s Gramercy Park, and is still the restaurant’s chef at large.

The boffo bash will celebrate and support our tony town’s vibrant cultural life with local chefs from The Lark, Loquita and Les Marchands, artisanal food, and eclectic wine purveyors.

Tickets start at $10,000 for tables of ten and, given Bourdain’s reputation as an internationally acclaimed raconteur, are going fast.

Food for thought, indeed.


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