Who says there isn’t still some bohemia left in the East Village?
Club Cumming, a cabaret bar operated by Alan Cumming, the actor, occupies a space on East Sixth Street that has been a gay dive bar, under different names, for about three decades. In its incarnation as Wonderbar during the 1990s, a flimsy wall separated the main floor from the X-rated back room.
So it was a historically apt site for SAG-Aftra, the labor union for screen actors and others, to host an intimate dinner on Monday night, celebrating the 50th anniversary of the Stonewall uprising. Even if, as far as dining rooms go, it’s not a place you’d necessarily want to inspect with a black light.
Mr. Cumming hosted the dinner with Patricia Clarkson, Debbie Harry, Deborra-Lee Furness, Julianna Margulies, Zachary Quinto and Michael Stipe. Also dining on chicken roulade, vegetarian salads and rainbow-striped petits fours (the caterers prepared the food off site) were Justin Theroux, Donna Karan, Griffin Dunne, Katie Couric, Cynthia Rowley, Eva Noblezada and Dita Von Teese.
“When I invite people here, it’s a place where all ages, all genders, all sexualities can have fun, and know that everyone is going to be kind and welcome you,” Mr. Cumming said. “And also be sexy and frolic-y and all that.”
After dinner, Jake Shears of the Scissor Sisters performed “Sad Song Backwards”; Mr. Cumming sang “Tomorrow”’ and Reeve Carney, the “Hadestown” actor, warbled “Somewhere Over the Rainbow.”
Jay Toole, 71, a Stonewall veteran and activist, spoke movingly about being a homeless “super butch” living in Washington Square Park in 1969 and participating in the first night of the rebellion.
Then she paused to check an incoming text. “It might be a date,” she said. “If you think that older people don’t have sex, you’re so wrong.”
Eight Months in a Leaky Boat
“Maiden,” a documentary about an all-female yacht team fighting the waves and discrimination in a 1989 round-the-world race, provides a vivid lesson in misogyny.
Despite many victories (including becoming the first female crew to circumnavigate the globe), they are relentlessly demeaned by critics. One male journalist dismissed their boat as “a tin full of tarts.”
Nevertheless, the 58-foot Maiden not only persevered but triumphed, winning two out of six legs in the eight-month-long Whitbread Round the World Race, and coming in second in its class. Only a leak prevented the team from capitalizing on an early lead and winning the whole thing.
Thirty years after that achievement, 10 of the crew, lead by the skipper Tracy Edwards, reunited at the Landmark at 57 in Midtown Manhattan on Tuesday night to premiere the film.
“People don’t realize what a big accomplishment this was,” said Whoopi Goldberg, a host of the evening. “These women are extraordinary.”
Ms. Edwards was flanked by several members of the original crew (she kept saying “old crew,” then corrected herself), including Jo Gooding, Dawn Riley, Sarah Davies, Claire Russell Warren, Sally Hunter, Angela Heath, Mikaela Von Koskull, Tanja Visser and Marie-Claude Kieffer.
Guests at the screening and after-party at Ousia Restaurant included Arturo Castro, Grace Hightower, Joely Richardson, Carol Alt, Agnes Gund and Naomi Wolf.
Ms. Edwards, who apprenticed as a cook while she learned to sail, said the main difference between all-male and all-female crews was communication.
“I sailed around the world with 17 men, and it was a very serious affair — not much talking,” she said. “I mean, they’d go days without talking. On the girls’ boat, we’d talk all the time, about everything. There was always something to talk about.”
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