Some weeks back, I attended Queen of the Night at The Paramount Hotel. I’ve never been a fan of live performances, especially where singing or dancing was involved. In college, I had the fortune of seeing the opera Carmen, and swore that would be only live performance I’d ever enjoy. And now living in the city where theatre and live performances are a must, it seems like this is one occasion following the masses is necessary.
Performed in the renovated Diamond Horseshoe of the Paramount Hotel, Queen of the Nightis an affair that words can’t describe. Just spastic jolts, wavering hands and grins of seismic proportions could begin to tell what adventure guests are soon to embark upon. Before arrival attendees are held to a dress code pleasing to the Marchesa – Katherine Crockett. Women decked in winter furs, trained gowns, and soft, coiffed hair paraded through the doors, a site reminiscent of true Hollywood Glamour, before entering a room filled with darkly made-up butlers. If you’re one of the lucky ones, you could be unexpectedly whisked away to a secret location, given a private performance, before being released back to your party.
I don’t want to give too much away, but imagine the creative eye of Giovanna Bottaglia, the fashion mind of Thom Browne, and the culinary experience Jennifer Rubell. Now insert Vaudeville meets Moulin Rouge set in 2014, and you have Queen of the Night. It was an old world experience of choreographed dancing, heart stopping acrobatic performances, and seamlessly orchestrated audience involvement. The young man sitting next to me told me he liked a girl in the show, and she asked him to come that night. Being a sucker for love, I fell for it hook, line and sinker. It wasn’t till the second dance sequence that I realized it was rouse and the young man was one of the lead actors.
And unlike other live performances, you won’t go hungry. The feastage seeming prepared for royalty utilized a barter system to obtain other food. Our table had the delicious paella everyone was salivating over. So other guests brought us gifts of lobster, short ribs, and pommes gratin to please our giving appetites. Though all the dishes looked more than delectable, I was too excited to gorge myself as I taken away many times that evening. I basically didn’t want to be that girl with food in her mouth, as she was dancing with a butler.
Opened in 1938, The Paramount Hotel’s Diamond Horseshoe was the place for dinner theatres, showgirl’s chorus, and Bobby-soxers to cry in hysterics as they waited for Frank Sinatra. Though I doubt you’ll see modern day Bobby-soxers breaking curfew for future performances, you’ll leave with memories that can only be experienced, to be understood. I, on the other hand, left with an actual piece of the show.