Weekend Wrap, Ewan McGregor, SIFF, and The Sorrento
A few of Seattle’s art and cultural organizations had events this past week, and I am happily able to say we support them personally, and through the Sorrento Hotel. We hosted 150 Artsfund donors to drinks and a few nibbles (well lots of nibbles) in the Top of the Town prior to seeing a Seattle Pro Musica rehearsal at St. James Cathedral – this ambitious and adventuresome choir had a near sold out weekend. The focus was, of course, on Artsfund and their annual luncheon this year featured author and poet Sherman Alexie. Additionally, the Henry Art Gallery held their annual party – this time hosted by Ruth and Bill True at Western Bridge. Roy McMakin designed the event and Matt Dillon cooked for all – doesn’t get much better than that. I loved the bouncy house.
As the weekend progressed, it became non-stop SIFF – which opened on Thursday. Bravo to Jennifer Roth on receiving the Mayors Award and SIFF opening film, the First Grader, which was a heartwarming, and intense, film about an 84 Kenyan man who wants to learn to read.
The icing on the proverbial teacake was the Sorrento’s Afternoon Tea for SIFF donors with Ewan McGregor on Sunday. WOW. So charming, super nice and, well, a normal guy in white shirt and jeans. The Top of the Town was once again the perfect, cozy setting for 40 donors to the Friends of SIFF campaign. Chef Ivan Szilak prepared homemade scones with jam, classic tea sandwiches -- cucumber and mint, egg salad and chicken – and the chocolate covered brownies were heavenly! The Sorrento is known for serving Afternoon Tea year-round but particularly during the holidays when the Fireside Room is jammed with revelers sipping and chatting away. It truly is a wonderful tradition. Deborah Persons, SIFF Executive Director, took MANY boxes of goodies to the army of volunteers that allow the festival to run for three weeks. Oh! and pink champagne with raspberries was the perfect drink for me …..although Ewan is a major coffee drinker.
At the Egyptian he was so accommodating to his fans – yes they were shouting for photos (yes, yes me too), and serious autograph hounds were pushing paper into his hands — I have not seen that in Seattle! Dale Chihuly made the sculptural glass Golden Space Needle trophy, he was awarded, and had a very funny chat with Entertainment Weekly’s Dave Karger.
The chat, with film clips, focused mostly on McGregor’s best-known roles. The “Trainspotting” toilet scene made me cringe (“there really are toilets like that in Glasgow.”) I, of course, loved the Moulin Rouge scenes, it is one of my favorite films. All of this was followed by dinner where my husband Michael got a moment to discuss vintage cars and the European racing circuit with the man of the hour…….three daughters, fifteen years of marriage, and a stellar acting career - what a special guy.
Simply put, we are blessed to have a full array of organizations doing very creative things in Seattle.