Inside Oprah’s A-list after-party: MJ, Seinfeld, Hanks, Grammer
MICHAEL SNEED firstname.lastname@example.org May 18, 2011 3:44PM
Oprah Winfrey I Scott Stewart~Sun-Times
Updated: August 28, 2011 12:21AM
The Oprah party . . .
Oh oh Oprah ... what a night!
Amidst a swirl of stars swallowed up in a glam Tinseltown set of purple and pink, a “serene” Oprah Winfrey presided over a private party at the Four Seasons hotel Tuesday night to bid adieu to her decades old TV show.
“It was just too, too and woo, woo!” chirped an Oprah guest who was agog while waltzing through Winfrey’s “sublime” party.
Sipping pink and purple cocktails accompanied by napkins emblazoned with Oprah’s famous quotes, a covey of celebs — interspersed with a few Chicago notables — waited for the TV tsarina to appear around midnight.
Although Madonna, Tom Cruise, Beyonce, Will and Jada Pinkett-Smith and Maria Shriver, who appeared on her show Tuesday night, were not at the late-night party, heavyweights like Michael Jordan, Kelsey Grammer, Tom Hanks and Rita Wilson were part of the mighty thrum — as well as Oprah’s father, Vernon Winfrey, her newly discovered half-sister Patricia and beau, Stedman Graham.
“It was obvious Kelsey Grammer was so in love with his new wife, playing with her hair and holding hands. They were adorable,” an attendee told Sneed, who noted many of the international crowd had a special VIP area for their use.
Actor Tom Hanks was described as charmingly modest, while comedian Jerry Seinfeld was described as “a bit cool” with the hoi polloi before he headed to the VIP section. Motown queen Aretha “RESPECT” Franklin was spotted humming tunes in sync with the party’s two New York Deejays; singer Alicia Keys, decked out in a skin-tight blue and green ensemble, was accompanied by two bodyguards and a personal assistant.
Designer dude Nate Berkus, money maven Suze Orman and comedienne Rosie O’Donnell were there with their partners; “Queer Eye’s” Carson Kressley was easily spotted as a standout in the soignée crowd — along with Chicago’s powerhouse set, which included Desiree Rogers, John Rogers, Jr., Mellody Hobson, Les Coney, Cheryl Burton and Linda Johnson Rice, who have become fixtures in Chicago’s hot new power firmament.
There were no speeches, just conversations punctuated by hand holding and
◆ And the hostess? “Oprah seemed happy, warm and serene,” said another party guest.
An Oprah note ...
Singer Paul Simon, who was starring in a sold-out show at the Chicago Theatre, dedicated a tune to Oprah claiming it was one of her favorite songs: “Diamonds On The Soles Of Her Shoes.” How very fitting, don’tcha think?
Oprah’s wheels ...
The $329,000 Bentley Azure convertible Oprah bought on a whim in 1996 and drove through the streets of Miami, despite the rain, on her 42nd birthday — has just been purchased by the Volo Auto Museum — located about 50 miles northwest of Chicago.
◆ Details: “Oprah and her friend Gayle King were headed to buy a Cartier watch for her birthday when she spotted the Bentley in a dealership window,” museum Director Brian Grams tells Sneed. “She had her driver pull over and bought the car on the spot. After the dealer prepped it and brought it out — it started to rain, but she didn’t care and drove off with the top down anyways,” said Grams, citing news reports. “Oprah said it was one of her favorite Gayle King memories.”
◆Cruisin’: “Oprah and Stedman would drive the car with the top down and her dogs in the back seat,” said Grams. “And she reportedly drove around with her Tina Turner wig on with the top down and had to hold on to the wig.”
◆A reunion? Grams has reached out to Oprah in hopes of an Oprah/auto reunion, but has not heard back. Oprah gave the car to a friend about five years ago — who recently sold it on eBay for about $69,000. It has about 49,000 miles on it — and will be unveiled June 19th at the museum’s “Topless” convertible show.
I spy ...
Songstress Kristin Chenoweth, in town to perform at Oprah’s last show, spotted at the posh RL restaurant Wednesday afternoon.
Thursday’s birthdays: Nora Ephron, 70; Kevin Garnett, 35; Grace Jones, 63; Pete Townshend, 66 and Jay Levine and John McDonough, both ageless.