“Wow, look!” exclaimed Cameron Diaz, on entering the American Museum of Natural History in a streamlined orange Calvin Klein Collection gown, her attention drawn to the dinosaur skeletons in the Theodore Roosevelt Rotunda that welcomed guests to AMNH’s annual gala.
Floor-length sheaths were the chic answer to wind chills. Naomi Campbell also chose a linear silhouette—a black reptilian sheer-and-sequin Roberto Cavalli dress. Former Glee star Dianna Agron played it demure in winter white worthy of Frozen—a pretty ballerina-length tulle dress and a snowy feather “barbwire” headband by CFDA/Vogue Fashion Fund finalist Gigi Burris.
Witty wonder woman Tina Fey (who is also a museum trustee) welcomed guests including Benjamin McKenzie, Bruno Mars, Al Roker, and Orange Is the New Black star, Laura Prepon. “I love this institution, where else can you find an ancient Chinese skull and a stuffed rat? . . . Other than the restaurant in the West Village I went to this week,” she deadpanned, dressed in her Oscar de la Renta white tweed suit and Roger Vivier clutch. Museum president Ellen V. Futter presented Tom Brokaw with the Theodore Roosevelt Award—on accepting, he urged the 750 revelers to pause and heed the Latin inscription at Sir Christopher Wren’s tomb in St Paul’s Cathedral: “Reader, if you seek his monument, look about you.” A reminder of not just the splendid architecture, but the greater beauty of nature around us.
While feasting on the deliciously filling chicken and chard potpies from Mario Batali’s menu (curated especially for the evening), guests still managed to spring to attention for the auction. Paddle8′s debonair Alexander Gilkes fervently took on the enthusiastic bidders eager to win the prize lots, one of which was “Live from New York, it’s Saturday Night!” which included two tickets to the show and then the after-party with the cast. Post-auction, Bruno Mars and his band took to the stage underneath the imposing blue whale in the Milstein Hall of Ocean Life.