CELEBRITIES AND MODELS ALIKE donned their glamorous best on Monday night for an evening of musical performances, dinner at Ciprianis, and fundraising for Denise Rich's annual Angel Ball, showing their support in finding a cure for cancer by funding the brightest scientific investigators.
Over a decadent dinner of buratta, steak, and performances by Smoky Robinson, Nelly, and Natalie Cole, guests including Kanye West, Kim Kardashian, Gerard Butler, Bar Refaeli, Estelle, Irina Shayk, Jessica Stam, and Ashanti mixed and mingled with the philanthropic set in New York. "I've lost both grandfathers and my sister to cancer," said Nelly. "We know how urgent and sensitive this matter is. Anytime you get a chance to come out, raise awareness and have fun while you're doing it, you really have no excuse."
A truely spectacular moment came thanks to a speech given by cancer survivor Suleika Jaouad, who documented her experience through blogging, and later as a New York Times contributor. As she shared her story with the audience, from finding out she had cancer to the moment she knew she was in remission, the crowd was in rapture, giving her a (well deserved) standing ovation at the completion.
As the speeches turned to donations, the crowd dug deep into their pockets and impressively, in a matter of less than 10 minutes, over $700,000 was donated in paddle raises. Thanks to auction lots including a trip to Turks & Caicos and a snake ring by Lorraine Schwartz, over $3.7 million was raised in total for leukemia, lymphoma and related cancer research.