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Abe Gurko

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The Art of Front Row

Posted: 02/13/2010 1:53 pm

The misinformation about front row talent continues.

The other day I wrote a piece about the lack of factual information being bandied about regarding the fees that celebrities are charging to attend the New York fashion shows. Fashionista.com did a really sloppy report on these supposed costs and random facts about talent. I just read Cathy Horyn's column in The New York Times Style, and she too, like fashionista.com has some information that is questionable and quotes from people that should just not be listened to. The worst part of all this is it is a bad reflection on the industry, which right now does not need anymore bad vibes being hoisted on them. Need something to write about? Try covering some of these indie designers who could use some well deserved attention. My point being: Designers & Talent = Good Match.

For full disclosure, part of my business is orchestrating front row talent for various companies and little if anything they are reporting is true. Look, I have not been crowned The Truth-Teller by Sportswear International for nothing. Here are a few points of light that bug me to no end:

  1. In regards to the "Gatekeeper" of Michael Kors. "I just said no to three celebrities who wanted to come to Michael's show," said Mr. Daley, the communications director for Mr. Kors, identifying the type as "very obscure and up-and-coming actresses who may or may not be the next Blake Lively." Believe me, if he IMDBPRO'ed them and saw that they had a few movies in the can...he would seat them plenty. But the operative word here is "obscure". This means that the "Hollywood publicist" that pitched Kors these girls, probably handle bigger names that would have been a perfect fit, just not available. And is Zoe Saldana really going to be at the Michael Kors show on Wednesday? Don't hold your breath. She is filming elsewhere.
  2. In regards to the ballyhoo about the Jersey Shore cast and their wanting to attend fashion shows. First of all I know for a fact that several designers invited them to sit front row. And even the illustrious Simon Doonan was quoted as saying, "The thing that's so fabulous about them is their complete and utter lack of pretension. That is a much needed ingredient of Fashion Week." Agreed...maybe not at Chado Ralph Rucci. The fact is, no one wanted to pay a fee for them, so it was smarter for MTV's Emily Yeomans, communications manager, to say that none of the cast had plans to attend shows, nor had any designers invited them. Try with all your might to hold onto the value of that brand, dear.
  3. Bloggers are clogging the front rows...well, excuse me. The designers AND their fashion publicists are all about us. And when a certain 13 year old girl is whisked off to Paris for the Christian Dior show, which is hilarious, let's not put the blame on the bloggers. We are proving to be as important a resource as many glossies, who will most likely not give a designer any play unless they advertise.
  4. Real Housewives, well, had the media not created their new found reality...then they would just be that...housewives...watching the fashion shows from their potato couches on NYC-25, Full Frontal Fashion.
  5. And this guy, Roger Padilha, MAO Public Relations, is completely talking out of his...well...orifice when he says, "Managers and agents realize fashion shows are a money-making opportunity. If you see an A-list star at a show, that's because she's making100,000 on the deal." That is such a crock of publicist hooey. His quote is right out of the fashionista.com playbook of NO CLUE. Just because MAO's clients don't interest any A-List talent, please don't use The New York Times to whine about it. Reports from the Mik Cire by Eric Kim fashion show was, "The front row was filled with nobodies. There was this Euro trashy guy sitting front row, clapping, hooting and hollering. It was embarrassing." I'll be sure to recommend that show to Sandra Bullock for next season.
  6. Trashing Lindsay Lohan seems to be the new black. Would you all just get over yourselves? You just wish that whoever you have schnorred up for your front row will get half the amount of press coverage as would La Lohan. And (B) She is not scheduled to be in NYC this week...rather in London.
  7. Late breaking addendum: I was just told by my a friend that Shenae Grimes of 90210 is in New York City telling people that certain companies have paid for her to be in town. And wouldn't you know that she is blabbing the wrong information? It is this reason that you cannot believe anything you read OR hear when it comes to talent and their costs related to front row.

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