Fashionable Life: Music and Fashion Royalty

by WL Author

Glamorous women descend on Washington.

Story and photos by Violetta Markelou

Charlize Theron by Gilles Bensimon

I know I’ve been absent for a while but a lot has been going on! Almost too much to report in one post.

I’ll start with an event where music royalty collided with Washington’s movers and shakers.

You remember Sheila E.? Yes, that Sheila E. Protégé to Prince and one of the greatest drummers alive, who made “The Glamorous Life” a worldwide hit, a singer, songwriter and actress. This multi-talented pioneer in music performed at the Howard Theater and partied with the District’s best and brightest at Napoleon just last week. How did you miss this you ask? It was a VIP event hosted by The Howard Theater and its director of marketing, Jennifer Vinson.

Sheila E. at Napoleon

The exclusive after party took place after her performance at the newly restored Howard Theater opening the Chuck Brown anniversary party on Thursday, May 16. Guests including Mark Ein of Venturehouse Group, CNN Correspondent Erin McPike and Brightest Young Things founder Svetlana Legetic. Guests hung out with the superstar and her band while enjoying signature cocktails and hors d’oeuvres and music by DJ Adrian Loving. Other notable guests included: Chris Jenkins (Editor, The Root), Hosan Lee (Founder, Table Tribes), Stephanie Williams (DC Music Downloads), Ashley Mason-Greene and Jayne Sandman (BrandlinkDC).

Svetlana Legetic, Jayne Sandman, Sheila E., Jennifer Vinson and Ashley Mason-Greene


DJ Adrian Loving

Bandmate and Sheila E. with Mark Ein

Sheila E. and her band

Stylish party guests

Erin McPike, Greg McDonald and Jennifer Vinson

Table Tribes Founder Hosan Lee and Adrian Hanni

Ashley Mason-Greene of BrandlinkDC and Angela Del Sol of The Howard Theater

And just hours before, I hit the uber chic opening of world-renowned fashion photographer Gilles Bensimon’s traveling exhibition, “Elles” at the Sofitel Hotel.

The collection of 25 photos captures some of the esteemed French fashion photographer’s best work, featuring famous women from the arts and entertainment industry. The exhibit is on display throughout the hotel through July 10.

Charlize Theron by Gilles Bensimon

The exhibit — never displayed before in the United States — features stunning black-and-whites of Catherine Deneuve, Audrey Hepburn, Charlize Theron, Beyoncé and others. It’s a definite must-see!

Kate Winslet by Gilles Bensimon


DJ Donald Syriani and friend

Michael Woestehoff and friend

Members of the Sofitel team and guests

The party was elegant and full of French flair with an entire table of macaron lollipops and some very tasty Champagne. The weather was absolutely perfect, so guests lingered on the patio grooving to house music by DJ Donald Syriani and sampling cosmetics from Geurlain. The gift bag was also lovely! Filled with their ‘Kiss Kiss’ lip gloss in “Flush Pink” (a perfect shade for summer) and Maxi Lash mascara by Guerlain. Not to mention a book with large photographs from the exhibit with personal quotes from Monsieur Bensimon himself. See the interview with the man himself below, courtesy of Sofitel Hotel.

Can you say “ooh la la”?

Gilles Bensimon on ‘Elles’ from Washington Life Magazine on Vimeo.

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