FASHION ROYALITY–Demeatria Boccella, Pat Cleveland Deborah Riley Draper and Mikki Taylor
I hope you didn’t miss it but if you did let me tell you about it.
On March 3, at the August Wilson Center hundreds witnessed the Pittsburgh debut of Versailles ’73, American Runway Revolution, directed by Deborah Riley Draper.
The film follows the iconic fashion effrontery at the Chateau de Versailles on November 28, 1973 between five American designers- Anne Klein, Stephen Burrows, Bill Blass, Oscar de la Renta and Halston – and five French designers- Yves St. Laurent, Christian Dior, Hubert de Givenchy, Pierre Cardin, and Emanuel Ungaro.
The events beginnings as a fundraiser orchestrated by fashion publicist Eleanor Lambert to raise money to restore the Palace of Versailles became a fierce competition. America with great clothes and color barrier breaking collective of Black models who sashayed the runway, won over the crowd and secured American fashion’s place on the world stage.
The Black models who awed the international set and changed fashion: Billie Blair, Jennifer Brice, Norma Jean Darden, Charlene Dash, Bethann Hardison, Barbara Jackson, China Machado, Ramona Saunders, Amina Warsuma and Pat Cleveland. Mikki Taylor, Cleveland and Draper were in Pittsburgh for the debut. It was a fantastic night.
If you missed it and want to see the film please go to www.versailles73movie. This is a piece of fashion history