Carol Channing Wows 'Em at Gypsy of the Year
Ninety-year-old Carol Channing was a wow at yesterday's Gypsy of the Year benefit, an all-star, multi-show revue which raises massive funds for Broadway Cares/Equity Fight AIDS.
The event started with no fewer than 16 chorus boys dancing up a storm while singing a tribute to Carol ("You're the best Dolly...You were swell on The Love Boat...You should have played Yentl...")
She emerged in white pants and a shimmery jacket -- all eyes, cheekbones, hair, and smiling teeth, the Carol we've always loved and lip-synched to -- and soaked up the spotlight like a grand, glittery sponge.
I led the standing ovation, and everyone else followed suit (I'm such a trendsetter).
And Carol started singing her signature tunes, "Diamonds Are a Girl's Best Friend" and "Hello, Dolly!," getting through them via sheer will and an innate love of performing, the kind that makes her synonymous with old-style Broadway showmanship.
The crowd went insane.
After a gigantic cake was wheeled out to celebrate 90 years of Carol, our star gave the audience some survival advice:
"Don't ever let anyone give you cortisone," she rasped. "You'll lose all your bone structure. Don't do it. Stagger on out there!"
As the crowd went into a whole other orgasm of screaming and cheering, Carol glowed and kept saying, "Thank you...thank you....thank you...thank you...thank you..."