It was a real Basel moment. We were at the Andy Warhol Museum party, buffet dinner at Mr. Chow at the W South Beach, hosted by Michael and Eva Chow, their children China, Maximillian, and Asia, and Museum Director Eric Shiner. Julian Schnabel had finished his remarks. The Dom Perignon was flowing.
Michael and his late wife, Tina Chow, were famous friends of Warhol. The night celebrated Michael Chow’s February 2016 upcoming show at the Andy Warhol Museum, titled “Voice for My Father,” commemorating Chow’s father, Zhou Xinfang, grandmaster of the Beijing Opera and a national treasure, who reinvented Chinese Opera. The exhibit will be comprised of Michael’s own large-scale abstract paintings, portraits by major artists, and archival imagery of his father. Copies of Chow’s book “Voice for My Father” filled the goodie bags.
Paris Hilton, Julian Lennon, Dylan Brant, Rose McGowan, Amanda Hearst, Jane Holzer, Jean Shafiroff, Elizabeth Fekkai and West Hampton philanthropist and Warhol Museum Board Member Ann McGuinn were there.
Beijing Opera stars Hongsong Dong, Yi Guo, and Hui Tian with violinist Mei Yang performed. Channeling his father with obvious delight, the famous restauranteur joined them in a beautifully executed cameo performance of traditional moves and melodies.
And then came the Italian Tenor. Vittorio Grigolo, accompanied with pianist Vincenzo Scalero, opened his mouth, and the room was still. When he finished, we would not let him go. “Encore! Encore!” we cried. So, he continued. At the far end of the stage, we saw Eva mouthing the words, swaying and gesturing with her hands at crescendo moments. “More, more,” she begged. Each aria brought us little closer to the divine.
He handed the microphone to Julian Schnabel. Hard to follow the tenor, Schnabel noted, but the hip quotient made up for it as he sang accapella.
And, desert was served.