'Dreamgirls' opening-night party has a turnout that's star-studded

January 25, 1998|By Sylvia Badger

DREAMGIRLS," ONE OF the biggest Broadway hits of the 1980s, has been re-created and is headed for Broadway. If you missed its week at the Mechanic Theatre, you might want to catch it at the Kennedy Center in Washington, where it will play for another three weeks.

In Baltimore, members of the cast and crew were wined and dined after the opening-night show at a party at the Belvedere's 13th Floor. Even the star of the show, B.J. Crosby (Effie), was there. She came to "Dreamgirls" direct from the original Broadway company of "Smokey Joe's Cafe," for which she received a Tony nomination.

Other cast members who stopped by were Kevin Anthony, who plays James Thunder Early; La Tonya Hall, who plays Deena Jones; and ensemble member Stepp Stewart, nominated for an Emmy for his work as a choreographer.

Others at the party included Brian Liddicoat, the Mechanic's general/theater manager; Ken Meyers, road manager for "Dreamgirls"; Jay Stewart, the Mechanic's subscription manager; and Marilyn Waranch, Mechanic public relations.

"Dreamgirls" is expected to open on Broadway in late April.

Harlow Fullwood Foundation

Harlow Fullwood, owner of several Kentucky Fried Chicken franchises, has done so well that he's been called Baltimore's sultan of poultry. After this former Baltimore City police officer became so successful in business, he and his wife, Elnora, started the Harlow Fullwood Foundation. In the 10 years of the foundation's existence, he's recognized hundreds of community leaders and donated thousands of dollars to help others.

I attended the 10th annual foundation breakfast, which honored so many people that it ran through lunchtime. Fullwood greeted the honorees before leading them into the ballroom at Martin's West, which was filled with more than 2,000 people.

Honorees included U.S. Rep. Elijah Cummings; Margaret Conn Himelfarb, a founding member of the Juvenile Diabetes Foundation; Sherry Bellamy, president and CEO of Bell Atlantic; Shirley Howard, president of the Children's Cancer Foundation; Ronald Smiley, Anheuser-Busch Corp.; and Clair Zamoiski Segal, who's in charge of the Baltimore Festival of Arts.

Madhatters Ball

The creative juices were flowing last weekend, as folks donned some pretty zany hats for the Madhatters Ball to benefit United Cerebral Palsy. Toppers included a wedding cake, a chapeau befitting an outer-space creature, a bee bonnet and a boar's head.

L'Hirdondelle Club is a delightful place to have a party. In addition to a delicious buffet of beef tenderloin, turkey, pasta and scallops, guests enjoyed games of chance, dancing to the music of Tony Berry and New Money, and lively bidding on auction items.

Partygoers included Wray McCurdy, an attorney, and his wife, Gail; Fila executive Brian Mangione and his wife, Justine; Covenant Care Corp. president and CEO Dan Hirschfeld, and his wife, Stephanie; Sweetheart Cup CFO Bill Spengler and his wife, Irene; USF&G execs Steve Lilienthal and his wife, Kris, and Fred Norman and his wife, Marilyn; Dean Charlton of Charlton Funeral Home and one of the party planners; Kim Kennedy of K&K Co. and also one of the party planners; Richard and Dort Mollett, owners of Antrim 1844, a Taneytown bed and breakfast; and Ellen Hubbard, NationsBank Network Services, who, according to Madhatters' chair Anne Boone-Simanski, deserves the unsung-hero award for all her last-minute work on the ball.

Dennis Connelly, executive director of the ball and a Realtor with O'Conor Piper & Flynn, says this year's event was the most successful yet. It netted $30,000, which was presented at the United Cerebral Palsy telethon on Channel 13 last Sunday.

March of Dimes

Industry leaders from Central Maryland gathered for breakfast at Harbor Court Hotel to hear about plans for the 1998 March of Dimes Walkathon, scheduled for April 26. This year marks the 60th anniversary of the March of Dimes, and executives of the Central Maryland chapter announced at the breakfast the group's goal of raising $500,000 from the local Walkathon.

Michael Merson, Helix Health president and CEO, and Channel 13's Vic Carter, Walkathon honorary chair, greeted one and all.

Among those who attended were Tracy Hart, March of Dimes executive director; chapter chair Steve Josey, C.W. Amos; Walkathon chair Ray Roquemore, Middle River Aircraft Systems; Bill Couper and Jack Lucas, NationsBank; Bill Dunson, Roland Tressler and Bob Ranson, BGE; Peggy Murphy, Federal Reserve Bank; Michael Forthman, Johns Hopkins Bayview Medical Center; Nellie Butler, UAW Local 738; David Pessin, attorney; and Brent Wisch, Middle River Aircraft Systems.

Pub Date: 1/25/98

Baltimore Sun Articles
Please note the green-lined linked article text has been applied commercially without any involvement from our newsroom editors, reporters or any other editorial staff.