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The 22nd Artie Awards Best-dressed List

Love, Loss, and What I Wore!

Timing is everything!

Love, Loss, and What I Wore! What a blatant plug for the delightfully funny show at Buffalo United Artist Theater…too bad it closed last week, because like the ladies in that play, I have delineated highlights of my life with what I wore. And certainly for an actor in Buffalo, the Artie Awards are a highlight. So I will attempt to neatly wrap up the events of Monday, June 4, and bend them around my somewhat precious if thoroughly appropriate theme:

click on any image to enlarge:

LOVE: I was so hoping someone would propose or we would have a lesbian wedding. Kerrykate Abel, would it have been so difficult to have your nuptials right on the Artie stage? You already had on a lovely white dress and won an Artie to boot. The puppet “Anthony Chase” could have presided; it certainly would have jazzed up the show as well as this article. Some people are just selfish! Instead, I guess I will have to talk about the love lavished on Floyd Collins, which won three major musical awards: actor, ensemble, and director.

LOSS: Is it possible to lose in all three categories in which you are nominated? In my personal experience, the simple answer: yes. But I digress; I am always impressed by the in memoriam segment of the Arties, where we celebrate the lives of those theater “family” members we lost in the past year. This year was no exception; musical director Michael Hake led Kevin Kennedy and Katy Miner in a moving tribute. A smiled crossed my lips when the image of Vicki Vogue flashed on the screen, knowing that her memory will live for years to come in future Artie gowns.

AND WHAT WE WORE: Although our red carpet was forced indoors because of the impending threat of rain, all of the theater’s grande dames were in attendance. Barbara Link LaRou brought her lovely sister Bonnie; Anne Gayley was there, as well as the beautiful Josephine Hogan. Mary Craig was adorned in bright red accessories and Lorna C. Hill rocked her own smart, inimitable style. And these, ladies and gentlemen, were the top 10 best dressed at the 2012 Arties:

1. Storm clouds may have been brewing but Avenue Q’s adorable Maria Droz was a basket of sunshine and a rainbow of color in this Adam Kreutinger original—complete with puppet pockets!( I would have given him a special Artie!)

2. Katharine Cornell Award recipient Carolyn Baeumler, who played the governess in ICTC’s Turn of the Screw,was thoroughly charming in this black-and-white print original with full skirt.

3. Floyd Collins received lots of Artie love, and so did cast member Erin Brignone in this scarlet Chanel mini.

4. Oliver’s Artful Dodger, Cassie Gorniewicz, was all woman in a flirty, dusty rose chiffon.

5. …as was my leading “lady,” Bebe Bulgari, in high glamour persimmon; she accepted her outstanding debut citation for The Birds Attack!

6. I loved Charmagne Chi’s crème satin structured gown; it evoked the elegance of times gone by.

7. Mother/daughter dresses never looked as good as this; the stunning Debbie Pappas with beautiful daughter Laura; both in slate grey.

8. Katy Miner, who once again wowed the audience during the in memoriam section of the program, wore this stunning architectural wonder of a dress—black embroidered lace over a satin mini sheath with flowing train.

9. Outstanding Actress in a Play winner Kristen Tripp Kelley was radiant is this vintage gold one-shoulder cocktail dress with matching sandals.

10. The highlight of any Artie Awards is the parade of Jimmy Lee Taglis gowns that hostess and nominee Lisa Ludwig models so beautifully; she’s a virtual one-woman fashion show. This voluminous chocolate ball gown got my top vote.

Don't forget to take a look at this year's Artie Award winners list here. There's also many more pictures from the awards ceremony here, on AV Daily. You can also find the full list of this year's nominees, originally published in the May 24th issue of Artvoice.