NY Mirror

AmFAR's Seasons of Hope dinner tossed its own dark mirth into the urgency stew. Billy Crystal, presenting an award to Robin Williams, said, "In his next movie, Robin plays a robot who's trying to become more human. It's the Al Gore story." Williams remarked, "George W. Bush talked to the NRA, but not to gay Republicans, so if you're a gay Republican, it really hasto be a pistol in your pocket if you want to speak to him." And comic Kate Clinton deadpanned, "I look at the presidential candidates and I say, 'I see dead people.' "

I saw live people in Marie Christine, that Creole update of the original Lady Marmalade, Medea, and my token cultural act of the year. The show isn't perfect—in fact, the usually amazing Audra McDonaldseems dramatically tentative—but the artistry of the score and presentation are stunning, and one mustn't scoff at that nearly extinct creature, an original musical with an actual vision. The critics seem pissed that there are no hummable tunes, but this creation is so elevated it doesn't stoop to archetypal showstopping numbers. Even the infanticide is done offstage.

Finally, on a slightly less tragic diva note, Chilli—that female female from TLC—was shopping at Victoria's Secret, but had to be helped out by a friend when her credit card was declined. I guess TLC stands for Too Little Credit, tee hee.

musto@villagevoice.com

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