DORIS DAY’S CRYSTAL CRUISE – Part Two
I want to keep Talking about the Doris Day Cruise, dedicated to her career and her passion: helping animals.
It was magical that Crystal, which sustains its own fine charities, supported fundraising for The Doris Day Animal Foundation on her tribute voyage. The DDAF must be proud of Board Member, Lea Price. Lea, and the joyful Mary Clark, ceaselessly raised awareness (and funds). Their Silent Auction was beautifully laid out with D. Day goodies, and the passengers were thrilled to bid for her special treasures. Win win!
Michael Alicia and Jeff Calhoun: My first dedicated crush was/is Michael Alicia. Truth is everyone loved Michael, but he is married to Jeff Calhoun, who, being fickle, I also have a crush on (David too). Jeff, celebrity/director (very BIG deal!), was so charming and congenial; he mesmerized the audience while sharing his Broadway history. This is a hint of the quality entertainment Crystal Cruises provides. (Personal tid- bit: Ken Berry was Jeff’s inspiration to be a tap dancer – small world.) In New York (after voyage), at their stunning apartment with city and river views, I got Ken on the phone and surprised Jeff. They had a great chat, and David and I had a great dinner! And, best news for LA Theatre folks, Jeff’s Newsies is coming to the Pantages this fall. He is directing his show’s first tour and is very enthused about the company. So heads up to friends and family across the USA, Newsies is sensational.
I still have a crush on all the revolving players of Table 37, as does Richard Jordon, a passenger/buddy from Toluca Lake who also made great new friends!
Kelly and Loren Lester: Kelly Lester, noteworthy singer/actress, delivered It’s Magic – a Musical Tribute to the Life and Music of Doris Day. Created by her husband Loren Lester (a well known actor and writer/director), for this Crystal Cruise, it was an enchanting one woman cabaret, and a delightful highlight of the D. Day theme. Speaking of Magic…
William Squire: A member of the Table 37 Gang, Mr. Squire couldn’t stop delivering sparkly gifts to lady gang members, identifiable by stretchy, kitschy, glitzy bracelets of all colors. Along with William’s many professional activities, he is a premier make-up artist. After his lectures, women were cornering him for beauty tips. And lucky me, he did full make-up before my time on the stage. A little glamour never hurts a girl. Nor does a new BFF.
Chic, cheeky and cheery, Margery Broder, table 37’s Social Director, and her spiffy husband Stu, celebrated her birthday and their anniversary. The party décor, by W. Squire, was over the top nautical and whimsical. And I’m still dazed by the opulence of Susan Stein. Tall and alluring, Susan gave talks on movie fashion and real life glamour. She is Fashion Queen of Palm Springs.
REAL MAGIC: Crystal Cruise and The Magic Castle are partners! Our trip’s Master Magician, the quite adorable Jonathan Levit, is a Tolucan! He and his beautiful friend, the meditation instructor Dina Michelle, are a magical couple.
Other charmed cruise offerings included a puppeteer and a puppet dog. Music for all tastes: Joe Fos at the Crystal Cove Piano; famed flautist Gary Arbuthnot, Vincenzo’s artist guitar, vocalists Michel Bell and Mark Preston, and the Galaxy Orchestra that backed every performance for guest stars and the gifted Crystal Ensemble of singers and dancers. Trios and sextets popped up everywhere. Dancing music and, if needed, dancing partners! Talent galore!
Of course David (My Mr.) could often be found in the Avenue Saloon, his favorite haunt. Jeffrey Deutsch, the saloon’s sensational singer and pianist, brings back that old feeling of mooning around in a swell bar and singing along with favorites. Sigh…
And yes, there is much more to report on, so much going on all the time, including relaxing in their Crystal Spa. (Steam helped to clear my stuffy head and a great massage forced me to relax.)
Do I sense a woman’s touch… Edie Rodriguez, President and COO, is bringing more luxury, while keeping the all-inclusive Crystal experience? Yep, all drinks, from champagne to soda pop, included. Tips, included. Smiles, exuded. If only I could go on. On with this column… and on another Crystal Cruise.