Tuesday, October 17, 2017

About NSW Kids in Need Foundation Cocktail Party

This year's event will be in the presence of The Honourable John Howard OM AC Former Prime Minister of Australia.

Alan Jones AO will host the event and interview Mr Howard about his time as Prime Minister.

6pm-8pm Saturday October 21st, Kirribilli House, Kirribilli Ave, Kirribilli
Dress code: Lounge Suit

By purchasing tickets to this event you’ll be helping the NSW Kids in Need Foundation raise valuable funds to make a real difference in the lives of children.

Event Highlights include:
Cocktail Party with Canapés and Beverages
Master of Ceremonies 2GB’s Alan Jones AO

NSW Kids in Need Foundation Limited fundraises for the following six kid’s charities:
• Bear Cottage Children's Hospice
• The Burns Unit at The Children’s Hospital at Westmead
• Central Coast Kids in Need
• Duke of Edinburgh's International Award – Australia
• Muscular Dystrophy NSW
• SHINE for Kids.

You can purchase one or numerous tickets – Tickets are limited to the first 150 people.

¹ $285 is tax deductible

Sunday, October 8, 2017

Love Birds spotted

 

Whisper's New York spy disguised as America's top social snapper Patrick McMullan has sent us some pics to share. Out on the tiles this week was the legendary Rupert Murdoch owner of the Fake News Fox News conglomerate with his glamorous wife Jerry Hall.
The shindig was the opening night of The Metropolitan Opera 2017-2018 season.

And look at some of the other celebrity guests who went on to the gala dinner afterwards: the amazing Patti Smith who can make a white t-shirt and long gray hair look so elegant, actors Josh Lucas and Paul Sorvino with his wife Dee Dee and F.Murray Abraham among so many others. What a difference it makes compared to your average Sydney party where the major guests are..newsreaders and male models! (we really do love them though).
Veronika Part looked the part & actor Paul Sorvino took his wife Dee Dee to the party
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Saturday, September 30, 2017

When worlds collide

PR supremo Deeta Colvin (pictured on the right) hosted a get-together this week as many of Sydney's top publicists joined Colvin who once reigned over Australia's glam social scene of the 1990s. Colvin was the mastermind behind the legendary Cointreau Balls of which Whispers attended many. They were some of the best bun fights this scribe has seen around the world. Hundreds of guests would be collected in limousines to be transported to a secret location for dinner and dancing wearing the prescribed costume theme for that year. Locations were varied from dis-used warehouses to a circus marquee in the wilds of the Wanda Beach sand hills, transformed into a fun palace for the night with top chefs catering and of course, those limos on hand to take one home which of course meant, over-indulgence was the order of the night

The several language speaking Deeta is married to heavyweight lawyer Rod McGeoh one of the clever masterminds behind securing the 2000 Olympics for Sydney. When the successful bid was announced the then Olympics boss and Spanish aristocrat  Juan Antonio Samaranch visited Sydney to look over the preparations as they proceeded.
Whispers recalls being at one small reception for Samaranch at which stage, the artist Charles Billich enters the scene. Spying a Billich print in the corner of the room McGeoh inquired why it was there and was told it was to be a gift to Samaranch. Shaking his head McGeoh responded "are you seriously giving him that"?.

The colorful wife of Billich, Christa Billich (left) was this week described as a "close friend" of the Playboy boss Hugh Hefner who died this week. A late arrival at the rather tacky Playboy Mansion, which can be hired for corporate events, it was only in the last couple of years that the Billichs descended upon the LA house. Perhaps Christa sneaked past the guards to the Hef's private quarters which the public were forbidden to enter and visited the ailing Hefner who had been bedridden for the past three years.

Friday, September 22, 2017

Lady Mary bows out

She is probably the last of an era. Lady Mary Fairfax who died on Monday at age 95 was farewelled today at a service at the church of choice in Sydney's Eastern Suburbs, St Marks in Darling Point. Lady Mary was the second wife of Sir Warwick Fairfax, the heir to the Fairfax publishing empire which at it's peak published the Sydney Morning Herald and The Age in Melbourne regarded as two of the great broadsheets of the world.

Whispers attended numerous parties at Mary's Darling Point pile Fairwater. Fairwater has been left in trust to the National Trust with the stipulation her loyal staff live there until they too pass on. Indeed we also spent a week at Lady Mary's New York penthouse on top the Pierre Hotel which was once the most expensive apartment in the world and which had it's own full sized ballroom. Mary wasn't there at the time but she arranged for her loyal chauffeur and his wife to host us.

Lady Mary's charity parties were the stuff of legend with guests like Prince Edward and Albert, Prince of Monaco ( Lady Mary was the Honorary Consul for Monaco) hosted in a giant marquee in her garden that backed on to Sydney Harbour.
With great style, Mary would invite selected media (like Moi) and we would be treated as equal guests, usually joining a line-up with her staff to be introduced to the royal guest of the evening. In a way it summed up not just Lady Mary's exquisite manners but the way she treated all people of varying backgrounds equally. Having risen to such great heights and privilege, Lady Fairfax devoted her life to charitable causes for the disadvantaged.

At one of Mary's parties we attended spoon bender Uri Geller was the star guest, Mary sent her butler to retrieve some of her silver cutlery which Geller proceeded to bend while dozens of guests found keys in their pocket bent out of shape or watches stopped or started. One guest, the representative of a French champagne company spent the night sleeping in his car when he found his car & house keys twisted out of shape.

Party guests: Albert of Monaco* Prince Edward, Uri Geller * James Murdoch
Pals: Ron & Nancy Reagan, Pope John Paul
When Lady Mary arrived at her New York penthouse just as Whispers was departing, she engaged us in a detailed conversation as to whether she should purchase a new Rolls Royce or a simpler Cadillac in which she was to be driven to Los Angeles (inviting us to accompany her but we had to turn her down as we were traveling on to London). Mary eventually purchased a sparkling new Roller and was duly driven to LA and when she asked her chauffeur to arrange for it to be shipped to Sydney he pointed out it was a left-hand drive:" Perhaps Madam should sell it and buy another one in Sydney". Instead she donated it to a local California charity to be auctioned off to the highest bidder.
While in the US Mary would always drop by the White House in Washington to dine with her pals Ronald & Nancy Reagan. As a Catholic convert, they say she had The Pope on speed dial.

At another party at Fairwater Whispers photographed a young lad who had lain down on a sofa and promptly fallen asleep. He turned out to be a 14 year old James Murdoch on work experience for his dad Rupert Murdoch's Daily Telegraph. Mary's family purchased a portrait painting of Lady Mary by Whispers and artist Skid Stuart in 1995. We like to think it may still hang in the drawing room along side her  Rodin statue.
Lady Mary Fairfax, born in Poland is survived by her sons Warwick Fairfax , Garth Symonds from an earlier marriage to businessman Cedric Symonds and children Anna Cleary, Charles Fairfax and 12 grandchildren

Thursday, September 14, 2017

Gina parties in New York

Gina Rinehart & Audrey Gruss
Whisper's New York spy disguised as an Upper East Side socialite has spotted Australia's richest person and the world's richest woman Gina Rinehart at several parties around town as our exclusive snaps show.
On the weekend Gina attended a White Tea garden party at the ritzy Southampton home, Fairwind thrown by philanthropist Audrey Gruss. That was to launch four new products in Gruss' Hope Fragrance where 100% of profits go to the Hope for Depression Research Foundation, a charity started by Gruss in honour of her mother Hope who suffered from depression most of her life. The guest list comprised of many of the US names from the Social Register: Sharon Bush, Kathy Hilton and Luce Churchill. Yes, they are all related to famed gents with the same moniker.
Michael Milken * David Koch

 A few days later Rinehart also attended a charity fundraiser for the Prostrate Cancer Foundation hosted by Michael Milken once jailed for two years and fined $600M for selling 'junk bonds'.  Milken has successfully re-invented himself as a charity fundraiser. That party was also attended by David Koch of the influential Koch brothers, As far as wealth goes, Koch is worth an estimated $47B, Gina Rinehart currently is worth around $12B personally while Milken gets by with just a lazy $1B. Rinehart has a New York penthouse which sensibly has a drive-in elevator for one's limousine which travels to your apartment so your feet never need touch the pavement. How the other half live!



Monday, September 11, 2017

Arise Sir Frank

Completely nu-noticed by the Mainstream Media possibly because No Kardashian was harmed during the making of this news, it didn't involve the late Princess Diana and Meghan Markle has nothing to do with it, but one of Australia's richest men has been knighted by Her Majesty, Queen of Australia,

Plain old Frank Lowy worth a reputed $8Billion who lives in Sydney's Bellevue Hill now becomes Sir Frank Lowy. Lowy is the mastermind of the giant Westfield Shopping plazas that now dot the landscape in Australia, the US and the UK. He was quietly knighted a month ago. One of Britain's largest Westfield is in the shadow of the dreadful Grenfeel building in West London. The Brits have taken to them like ducks to water.
And it was not for the services of confusing shoppers world-wide as to where they parked their car in a Westfield car-park, rather for his services to industry which have been considerable certainly in his adopted Australia where he arrived as a penniless refugee after WW2. You could read more of Sir Frank's fascinating history here.

Thursday, September 7, 2017

Getting married..


 Despite all the delays and political machinations it's almost assured that the Same Sex Marriage act eventually will come into law with a Parliamentary vote
Thriving new businesses are bound to spring up catering to the various newly weds who will be rushing to get hitched.
And perhaps that's why popular society figure Glen Marie Frost (pictured) has just been ordained as a Civil Celebrant.

Glen Marie lives in the beautiful Southern Highlands (with her much loved cat) and could be one of the most popular Celebrants in the business. A former model and later political wheeler and dealer with the Liberal Party, she has made numerous impeccable connections over the years and is a regular on the social circuit and is seen at all the best parties.
But be assured : Glen Marie will perform a wonderful and memorable ceremony for any couple planning to get hitched no matter what their orientation is. All that matters is that they are in love!  Isn't that wonderful !

 Below: Glen Marie with Ros Packer & the late Lady Sonia McMahon


Princess Diana broke up My Marriage

The charity worker who brought the late Princess Diana to Australia, Marie Sutton has told Whispers how the experience ended up wrecking her marriage.
When Sutton raised the idea of inviting Diana to Sydney to help launch the Victor Change cardiac unit at St Vincent's Hospital to the charity committee organizing the event, no-one thought it could possibly happen. But one week later Marie was astonished to receive a late night phone call from Diana herself who confirmed that not only would she launch the charity, it would be her last public appearance before retiring from the public eye.

The dramas that followed have been well documented as then NSW premier Nevile Wran and a number of society figures tried to wrestle control of the project from Marie. But Diana remained loyal to Sutton and Marie eventually accompanied the Princess during her 4 day visit.
But Sutton now says the stress she suffered as vested powerful interests continually tried to take over the event eventually led to she and husband splitting.
Marie has given an interview to Channel Ten's Studio Ten show with show-biz editor Craig Bennett which you can view below.

Sunday, August 27, 2017

Lord Alan Sugar Vs Piers Morgan #2


Lord Sugar Vs Piers Morgan #1

Whispers noticed this snap on twitter 2 days ago. It's a pic of a young lad at Sydney's prestigious Knox Grammar school. He grew into one of Australia's most loved movie stars. Over drinks that evening we showed it to a pal who works for the MailOnline where it dully ended up today.
Aren't we nice to our fellow struggling hacks?
# Hugh Jackman is the lad in the middle in the plain t-shirt.

Friday, August 25, 2017

Lisa Wilkinson : 180 degree turn?

When Whisper's first read of  TV host Lisa Wilkinson's unfortunate fall in the shower while on holiday in Italy, our sympathy was with the poor lady. Lisa broke her arm in two places and having dealt with a relative just a year ago who suffered a similar fall with a broken arm, it was only the quick intervention of the doctor's at our inner city hospital St Vincent's that pain relief was finally administered.

Instagram
Lisa gave an interview to her Nine Network's The Fix and seemed to be implying that the treatment she received in an Italian hospital was superb:
"I couldn't help but compare it to our experience in the USA in January, when our daughter swallowed a piece of pineapple the wrong way and it got stuck in her throat. There, we were treated with equal speed, warmth and professionalism -- but only after we had handed over credit-card details. And for what was only a very brief and successful procedure, the bills are still coming in -- for many thousands of dollars.

"Two countries, two systems. For me, it was the difference between running health care as a business, and providing it as a human right."
While Lisa's arm will need to be fitted for a plate upon her return to Sydney, she's grateful for the care she received abroad."

 After x-rays showed the extent of the damage, the pair were sent to a larger hospital that despite looking "like a tattered 1950s warehouse from Beirut", Lisa says she received excellent care and was put in a plaster cast.
Shockingly, the ordeal didn't cost her a cent.
"In Italy, public hospitals are free for everyone, including blow-in tourists like us," she wrote.

Alas, Lisa now has a different view of her Italian medical experience as the Daily Telegraph thundered yesterday:

Bad doctors leave Lisa Wilkinson's arm in 's-bend' as she reveals it'll take another 12 months to heal
Whatever the outcome we wish Lisa all the best. A broken arm is very debilitating for someone who still goes to work every day.

Thursday, August 24, 2017

Hair included

Here is the latest snap of Lord Alan Sugar on his boat the Lady A having his hair cut. You can almost see those ex-Biba art deco lady lamps in the background. All of this- except Mr Sugar and hair stylist, can be yours for under $20M.
The boat is moored off the beautiful island of Capri where Sugar has a holiday villa. Give Lord Sugar a call and maybe he'll put you up for the week-end as you inspect his ship. For details- see story below.
# you can always follow Lord Sugar on his twitter feed and in fact he is encouraging more followers so he can beat Piers Morgan's number.

Tuesday, August 22, 2017

Another Simon Napier- Bell Discovery





British music legend and entrepreneur Simon Napier-Bell, due in Sydney in September to give one of his fascinating talks has many connections with Australia.

 Apart from his father, a documentary film-maker being born in Oz, he also discovered a diminutive Aussie singer John Paul Young whose career was languishing in the doldrums.

Napier-bell had a song he was shopping around and decided Young was the ideal singer to present it.







Alan's Boat For Sale

The late tycoon Alan Bond's floating palace is for sale if you have $17M to spare  Once named the Southern Cross 111 in honour of his yachting success with the America's Cup the 181-foot long yacht accommodates 12 guests in 6 cabins and has a crew of 15. 

 Built in Japan in 1986 for the subsequently disgraced Australian tycoon who died in 2015, the vessel was bought by Lord Alan Sugar after Bond's death.
Lord & Lady Sugar
Sugar, better known as the host of the British reality TV series The Apprentice re-named the boat   The Lady A after his wife Ann and it's described as a “unique market opportunity” and “one of the most distinctive yachts on the water” by brokers.
When Sugar is not castigating President Donald Trump he indulges in an on-line battering of the UK TV host Piers Morgan who in the past he has called a "Trump toady". Now he has decided the yacht is surplus to his needs. It's moored off the romantic Isle of Capri where Sugar has a holiday home.
You can find more information at the ship brokers Edmiston

We've provided a few snaps of the luxury interior which one wag described as "looking like it was furnished by Ikea". How rude! Mind you those 'art deco' Lady Lamps look suspiciously like the floor stock from the legendary 1970s London department store BIBA which lasted about 3 years before closing with the fittings sold off for a song in a fire sale.

Sunday, August 20, 2017

TheTruth about George Michael

On September 11th legendary British music entrepreneur Simon Napier-Bell will appear at Leadbelly in Newtown to give an after dinner talk.
Among Napier-Bell's many music discoveries are Dusty Springfield, The Yardbyrds, Marc Bolan & T-Rex and of course, George Michael and Wham who he turned into world superstars.
Simon remained a close friend of George Michael's and is threatening to tell the real story of Michael's life. Once when visiting Napier-Bell at his Thai villa where he now lives, Whispers found George Michael hiding from the world's media after yet another druggy car accident in the UK.
                                                            

Simon will have plenty to say about the Same Sex marriage issue having recently married his male partner in the UK and having recently directed a fascinating documentary "50 Years Legal" which is currently being screened in UK cinemas. In the film he interviews a host of famous British gays including Elton John, Stephen Fry, Matt Lucas, Sir Derek Jacobi, Sir Ian McKellan , David Hockney and many more.
He has now written 5 best-selling books about music which have received rave reviews. One "Black Vinyl White Powder" was included in the UK school curriculum. His current book Ta-Ra-Ra-BOOM De-Ay tells the history of commercial music from the 1700s onwards. Napier-Bell's last visit to Sydney was in 2016 when he accompanied Sinead O'Connor who he was then managing.

Below is the famous song Napier-Bell wrote for Dusty Springfield which was also a mega hit for Elvis Presley

But the Chandeliers !

Last week just wasn't a good week for Whispers. Not feeling top of the world etc. We had to turn down the odd stiffy or two. And thus, we missed yet another glittering' event. And it was a glittering event because several newspaper columnists told us all about the crystal chandeliers that were featured at the 2017 Prix De Marie Clair Awards.

We can't really say we missed those in attendance. Mainly because we saw the same "A-List" the week before and will probably again next week at something or other. Assorted newsreaders and TV hosts, models and fashion designers were there to receive an award. Don't get us wrong. They're all nice people. And they all look nice. Some are beautiful even and some most handsome. Take the modelling Stenmark Twins (please). Absolute charmers and devilishly handsome. We can't say too much as Whispers knows the family quite well but..they were just as handsome as they were last week and will be next week at the next event.
Our one real regret was that last week we also missed an event at which many "influencers" would be in attendance. We've yet to meet a real influencer but it's early days. Back to Marie Claire. Editor Jackie Frank is one of our most liked and clever magazine editors. She's unpretentious and knows the business which is why her magazine is very successful. And apparently, she knows her chandeliers. And now the readers of many publications also know about those chandeliers.

Here is our snap of singer Danni Minogue at the event in an exciting white frock. It's so wonderful that the Mail Online ran at least 8 photos of it. Next to her is the wondrous make-up guru Napoleon Perdis who whipped up some gorgeous puff sleeves out of the the remaining fabric from Danni's dress. And a snap of the designing duo from Romance Was Born. What fun !

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Quelle Horreur !

An almighty row has broken out after the UK gay & lesbian publication Pink News labelled Prince
George as a "gay icon".
Really?. He looks more to Whispers ( as does Princess Charlotte) as delightfully 1950s in that Windsor way. Surely his Father Prince William and uncle Prince Harry are obvious candidates for gay icons.
Anyhow our aging NSW parliamentarian the Reverend Fred Nile is completely outraged and says :  “The article is an underhanded attempt at promoting a divisive agenda of radical social reform by abusing the symbolism of the Royal Family. No child, especially a potential future Monarch, should be exploited for ideological purposes in this way."

Heaven forbid that Australia's (and the Commonwealth's) Royal Family should ever be exploited for ideological purposes.
What to make of this budding scandal? We have no idea.

Disclosure : Whispers once interviewed the Reverend Fred in his NSW Parliament office. He was most friendly, pouring tea and offering biscuits but as we were about to depart he insisted we join his Parliamentary prayer group with his Christian Democratic Party colleagues. A Bible placed in our hand and a gentle shove in the back made it clear a refusal would not be accepted.

We are most honoured to say that the Reverend Fred Nile prayed to The Lord and requested He (She)  place Whispers into his (her) gentle arms when That Time comes.

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

Margot's Message



The latest Australian export to Hollywood Margot Robbie sends Whispers her latest snap and with an important message:

"LOVE IS LOVE 👬👭👫Aussie's register to vote before August 24th:"

Box Office Bonanza

As if to prove Whispers' point in our last post mentioning a low budget film we are working on, a
perfect example occurs to prove powerful Hollywood film producer Cassian Elwes' belief in the big profits to be made on small films.

And taking the box office by storm the flick also stars two Australian actors. Annabelle: Creation is the tale of a couple who welcome a Nun and six orphaned girls into their California farmhouse. But terror soon strikes the house when one child enters a forbidden room.
Directed by Swede David Sandberg the film stars Miranda Otto and Anthony LaPaglia. It was released in Australia on the 10th August and is a smash hit.
Costing a reasonable $15M , the picture has already taken over $71M at the box office. 
Below is a trailer for the film.
    UPDATE : Worldwide takings for Annabelle: Creation are now:  

 $215,080,384

Sunday, August 13, 2017

Let's Get Real

Following Whisper's revelation that colourful Sydney artistic duo Charles and Christa Billich are headed for the USA, a Sydney newspaper has called into question the claims about several planned reality TV shows.
(left : Christa & Charles Billich)
Whispers only knows what we have read about the Billich's show which reputedly follows the duo as they attempt to set up a Los Angeles art gallery. Former Sydneysider James Maas who hails from the North Shore is reported to be starring in the series which has the blessing of Hollywood director Adam Shroeder.

As to former Sydney gumshoe Frank Monte and his partner Sharon Sargeant's The Private Eye & The Madam we know a bit more. Monte has received some flack for originally trying to raise funding on Kickstarter. But it did in fact pay off with an LA film investor ponying up $250,000 to finance a pilot and one episode which are now in the can. We can assure readers the financier is genuine and has confirmed the deal but wishes to remain anonymous at this stage.

We also know a South American TV network ( we checked !) offered to purchase the series from Monte but Monte says the price offered along with restrictions on distribution didn't make the deal viable. Making the pilot is almost the easy part. Selling it is the hard part.
                        (right: Frank Monte & Sharon Sargeant)
Whispers more than anyone knows how difficult it is getting a film project off the ground. Having moved into the Moving Picture Industry five years ago we have worked on two successful documentaries. Another project we have in the pipeline has been thirty years in the planning.
Hollywood heavies Cassian & Cary Elwes
It's taken that long to get a biopic based on the life of The Who manager Kit Lambert written by Whispers with famous UK rock manager Simon Napier-Bell and former MOJO editor Pat Gilbert to the stage where powerful  US independent producer Cassian Elwes has picked up the project for a new production company he has formed with his brother actor Cary Elwes.
The film has the enthusiastic backing of Pete 
 Townshend and Roger Daltrey. The Who are still huge stars in the US and can pack stadiums giving The Rolling Stones a run for their money.

Elwes is specializing in low budget films, although the expected budget $US18M isn't chickenfeed, in Hollywood terms it's low. Elwes sells the rights to his films to cable TV to cover production costs where they end up following a cinema release. But it's almost like the old studio system with a production line. He has 8 films on the go and where ours is in the pecking order is complicated
by whether a name actor is available seeing they are obligated for years ahead. Every actor that reads our script wants the role including  Colin Farrell but will they be available?
It gets to the point where all you care about is- as long as the cheques roll in. Hopefully one day we'll get to attend the premiere.
 Right: Simon Napier-Bell & his famous discovery George Michael