Zina Bethune has realized a remarkable career as a dancer, actress, director and choreographer, while faced with serious physical disabilities. For 25 years, Bethune Theatredance, program for disabled children has performed for international audiences at the White House, a PBS Special, NBC Kennedy Center and tours to Japan, Switzerland, Italy and China. More than 6,000 graduates have participated in their programs, which enable children with disabilities to participate in the world of movement and dance.
|Stefanie Powers and Zina Bethune at USA Hero Awards|
Appropriately, Zina was selected as the first honoree of the USA Today Hollywood Hero Award at the Beverly Hilton. Special guests included Stefanie Powers, Tara Lipinski and James "Gypsy" Haake who jetted in from Florida to emcee the show. Remember Gypsy from his hosting days at La Cage Au Follies? Strange to see him wearing a man's suit! Also enjoyed chatting with Julie Newmar, the original Catwoman in Batman. Her body is as firm as ever, and she still is one sexy feline. The brouhaha she had with Jim Belushi (her neighbor in Beverly Hills) is apparently settled, and she even has a recurring role in his ABC series, According to Jim. No more cat fights for this svelte siren.
|Julie Newmar (Catwoman)|
Darling Darlene Friedman who is an anesthesiologist in B.H., was feted at a birthday luncheon at Spago hosted by Shelly (Mrs. Donald Sterling), owner of the Clippers and about everything else on the Westside. Darlene who resides in Century City, invited a gaggle of gals including Stephanie Hibbler, Marlene Ridgley, Annie Lehrer, Eleanor Moscatel, Joan Levine, Beverly Cohen and Korean kewpie doll Jisook Park, to celebrate the happy occasion. Even Wolfgang Puck and Barbara Lazaroff posed prettily with the gals at the gaily decorated table. Among the gifts presented to the Birthday girl were an assortment of teddy bears, indicating various stages of her life. The last one was dressed as a bride! Does that mean anything, Darlene?
|Musician Lee Newman with Jaso Alexander at debut of Newman's CD "Happy Together"|
The magical Magic Castle's W.C. Fields room was the perfect venue for the launch of Lee Newman's new CD "Happy Together" billed as the 60's Songbook. Newman, whose entertainment roots come from a family including iconic songwriter Jimmy McHugh, and legendary Eddie Cantor, has put together his own musical tributes to the greatest classic songs of the 60's. Dedicated to Newman's longtime mentor, the late Harry Nilsson, the CD features such evergreens' as "Never My love" and "Here Comes That Rainy Day Feeling Again.". Of special interest is the Beatles classic, "Help" in a never before heard personal arrangement by John Lennon.
|James "Gypsy" Haake|
Speaking of musical legends, Tony Bennett will appear for one night only ( June 17th) when the Henry Mancin Institute presents their 10th Anniversary Concert at the Kodak Theatre at Hollywood & Highland. Also performing will be host Dave Koz along with other guest artists like Monica Mancini and famed composer John Williams, who will conduct music from his Oscar nominated score Memoirs of a Geisha. At this benefit for promising musicians, Williams will receive the Hank Award and Ginny Mancinci will be presented the Legacy Award by JulieAndrews. Sounds like a memorable musical mélange on the Hollywood Beat.
|Shelly Sterling (Mrs. Donald Sterling, owner of the Clippers) and Darlene Friedman|