Partying to the Max in Beverly Hills

Times Staff Writer

The party was supposed to be smallish. Instead, the crowd was bumper to bumper, elbow to elbow, nose to nose the other evening at Hanson Galleries in Beverly Hills, with 300 trying to get a close-up of Peter Max's charm at his "Ladies of the '80s" art opening--not to mention his neo-Fauvist paintings.

In scarf and tennies, and considerably more casual than the crowd, Michael J. Pollard sauntered up to the honoree (Max in tuxedo without black-tie): "Wasn't it Woodstock when last we met?"

Collectors Arte Johnson and Arnold and Maria Schwarzenegger were in the crowd. So were Jane Seymour, attorney Susan Grode, major collector Arnold Ashkenazy, Aaron Zigman (producer of the Jets' "Crush on You" and Max's keyboard instructor) and his date Lydia Finzi, Jack Carter, "Head of the Class's" Christine Haje, curator Joan Quinn and Richard Guttman.

While gallery owner Scott Hanson and his wife Judi (expecting) and his partner, attorney Richard Chasen, introduced Max non-stop on one side, Max's right-hand assistant Mimi Gelb took the other side, and Peter Max's head twitched back and forth. Except for those who arrived very early (and caught the chatter of gallery salespersons going through their lines), it was nearly impossible to wend to the back to see "Nude Fan Dancer," "Les Mondrian Ladies" and Max's newest love--computer art, which Sony had rigged up--but the show runs through Feb. 5.

Then, Tuesday evening, the gallery again was the setting for festivities, this time honoring James Stewart for his selection as the Lifetime Award honoree. The award will be presented Feb. 21 at the Monterey Film Festival in Carmel where Hanson also has a gallery. Three of Stewart's leading ladies--Doris Day ("The Man Who Knew Too Much"), Joan Fontaine "You Gotta Stay Happy") and Kim Novak ("Vertigo")--will be present when Carmel Mayor Clint Eastwood presents the award to Stewart.

Incidentally, when Gloria and James Stewart were in Washington for President Reagan's state dinner for Soviet leader Mikhail S. Gorbachev, they received a permanent house guest from Liz Whitney, a long-time friend. It's a 3-month-old foxhound, Harvey. According to Gloria, Harvey gets along with Baron, their golden retriever, but, Mara, the older retriever, will have none of him.

GRAND TRADITION: "Un Bal Masque" with hidden glances and swirling dancers is the style set by Penny Bianchi and Renee Hanson when they chair the Pasadena Symphony's exclusive Diamond Jubilee Gala to celebrate the symphony's 60th anniversary season Friday at the Biltmore.

Those swirlers will swirl to the music of Michael Carney's Orchestra. (He played for the 1984 Presidential Inaugural party.) The Crystal Ballroom will be lavish with feathers, flowers and glittery accents in the grande mood, but more about that later. On Saturday, music director Jorge Mester will lead the Pasadena Symphony in the centerpiece of its 60th anniversary season, Berlioz's choral symphony "Romeo et Juliette" at the Pasadena Civic Auditorium.

PRESENTEES: From Joann McGarty and Marcela Hutson, we hear it was a spectacular mother-daughter tea that the Social Service Auxiliary hosted at the California Club to introduce the young women who will be introduced to Archbishop Roger M. Mahony on June 6 at the Presentation Ball.

Chairman Suzette Keefer and assistant Diane Mullin put president Betty Weiner, presentee chairman Mary Lou Workman and her assistant Liz LeFevre and ball chairman Anne Porteous at the head of the reception line. A few days later the presentees and their fathers attended a luncheon and tour (planned by Betty Morgan and Kay McCulloch) of Stella Maris Community Center.

PAST PERFECT: They'll be trying to raise more than $100,000 and bring their total to $600,000 on the annual Center Stage extravaganza. That's why everyone was upbeat and happy at Linda Patton's kick-off party for this year's event. Themed "Bravissimo," it's set for March 5 at the Westin Bonaventure. Center Stage chairman Diane Scott was in the spotlight, but so were assistant major-domos--Ann Weir, Darrell Banta and Diane Robertson. Nordstrom does the fashion show. . . .

Dale C. Olson wasn't at his office Tuesday. He was at home on Outpost Drive in the Hollywood Hills cooking up chicken breasts, fettucini Alfredo and Mexican salad for 80 with Jo deWinter. They and a group of Sally Kirkland's acting friends (Robert De Niro, Robert Blake, Tony and Rita Franciosa, Ed Begley Jr., Doris Roberts) were honoring her for her outstanding performance in "Anna". . . .

USC Golden Circle members and life members of the President's Circle met for dinner to honor Robert Erburu, chairman and CEO of Times Mirror. . . .

The newly formed Women for Jeffrey held their first function. They met at the Jeffrey Foundation for tours of the group homes for the handicapped and tea . . .

Alan H. FitzGerald, managing director of the Watergate in Washington, hosted cocktails this week at the Westwood Marquis Hotel and Gardens. . . .

BIG DATE: Sam Iacobellis, president, North American Aircraft Rockwell International, is extending the invitation on behalf of the California Museum of Science and Industry Advisory Board for the museum's seventh annual award banquet Feb. 2 at the Beverly Hilton. The awards will go to David Anderson and General Telephone California. It's black-tie.

AND A HEART DATE: Jaclyn Tilley Hill is atwitter over the Heart Ball on Feb. 5 at the Beverly Wilshire. It's to be "An Evening With the Three Legendary Heartthrobs: Frankie Avalon/Fabian/Bobby Rydell." With a very romantic attitude for the American Heart Assn., she and artist Flavia are decorating around the idea, "Each Moment Is a Gift From the Heart."

Epicurean dining (presumably low-cholesterol) will be set for tables going for $2,500. Chairman Hill expects trio Avalon/Fabian/Rydell to make the crowd's hearts go pitty-pat. Carol Connors, celebrity chairman, is helping with that too lining up star heart breakers. Last year's ball netted $146,765.

MAJOR MOVERS: The sun never sets at the Los Angeles World Affairs Council. Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives James C. Wright Jr. spoke Monday at a Century Plaza dinner, following on the heels of Ambassador of Canada to the United Nations Stephen Lewis, who spoke at the Los Angeles Hilton.

Now Jacques Chaban-Delmas, president of the French National Assembly, mayor of Bordeaux and former prime minister of France, addresses the council at a luncheon Monday at the Sheraton Grande. French Consul Gen. Bernard Miyet hosted a dinner for him Saturday in Beverly Hills. Elin Vanderlip invited the president and his wife Michelene down to Portuguese Bend for Sunday brunch.

Non-stop hostess Elin also entertains multi-lingual Hungarian countess Mihri Fenwick for lunch on Thursday at the Bistro Garden. She's coming from Paris for Elin's La Coterie group to talk and show slides (over wine and dinner) of famous rooms she has painted for the likes of William Paley, Prince Aga Khan, Baron Edmund de Rothschild and Michel David-Weil. Also, the World Affairs Council has another important date Feb. 9 at the Century Plaza with Dr. Abdallah Bouhabib, Ambassador of Lebanon to the U.S.

UPSCALE: Venice Family Clinic, "family doctor for the poor and the homeless," staged a special thank-you dinner at the Four Seasons last Sunday for 275 Silver Circle members (who give $1,000 annually) and benefactors ($5,000 annually).

Parties at five private homes ushered in the evening. Hosting cocktails and inviting others to view their art were David and Susan Gersh, Marjorie and Michael Fasman, Sue and Steven Antebi, Ruth Yablans and Judy Henning and Dick Rosenzweig. Art patrons Peter and Eileen Norton, who recently gave the Venice clinic a substantial donation, attended the Henning/Rosensweig affair.

OVERFLOW CROWD: Jimmy and Anne Murphy cut a 100-pound cake at the cocktail buffet celebrating the 10th anniversary of their Jimmy's in Beverly Hills. While Murray Korda and his Strings played, a festive crowd gathered in the Deauville and Malabar rooms.

Among the crowd--Liz Familian, Rita Cruikshank, Berny and Ellen Byrens, former Gov. Pat Brown, former Sen. John Tunney, Michael and Gretchen Wayne, Patrick Wayne and Beverly Sassoon, Betty and Rodney Williams, Carol Kaye, Arthur Gilbert, former Ambassador to Mexico John Gavin, Paul Bruggemans and Line Renaud, Sybil Brand, Jane Mock, Molly Barnes, Dr. Sandy and Faye Raye Rothenberg. Some stayed for dinner. All, on leaving, received gift copies of the February Gourmet magazine, featuring Jimmy's in its lead review.

GREMLINS: Sponsors at the American Jewish Committee's Social Concern Award dinner Feb. 11 honoring Sheldon and Sandra Ausman will pay $500 per couple , not per table . We erred. Tables are $2,500 for 10.

UPCOMING: Scott Sanders, James McManus and Mark Felton have invitations out for their annual Radio City Music Hall Productions salute to the American Music Awards. It's at Chasens on Monday evening and follows the awards presentations at the Shrine.

REAL WORLD: Vista del Mar Junior Associates want the waves to roll away because members plan to host "A Carnival at the Carousel" at the Santa Monica Pier Saturday, according to president Joanne Rackow. Susan Levin and Pam Rosengard are combining continuous feasting, dancing and casino games to raise funds for Vista del Mar Child and Family Services. . . .

The Associates support group of the Palos Verdes Art Center presents "Passport to Taste II," its second annual evening of wines, cuisine, dancing and friends Feb. 5, at the Princess Pavilion in San Pedro. . . .

Academy Award-winning actress Marlee Matlin and Grammy Award-winning artist Melissa Manchester will be feted as women of achievement at the Anti-Defamation League's fifth annual Women's Division Luncheon Thursday at the Beverly Wilshire. . . .

USC Trojan Guild of Los Angeles will hear a panel on "Women in Transition" Thursday at the campus before luncheon in Town and Gown. Vice Provost Sherry May is keynoter. Lynne Iglitzin, director of development, School of Social Work, will moderate.

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