Meryl Streep played Dorothy last night, crooning with scarecrow James Taylor in the opening number of the Rainforest Fund concert at Carnegie Hall.
Sting was the tin man, Elton John the cowardly, fashionable lion with golden fur on his cuffs and ruby slippers on his feet.
And with a click of the heels, the performers and songs -- all ones used in movies -- changed.
Vince Gill sang “Pretty Woman,” Jennifer Hudson a bluesy “The Weight” by the Band. Bruno Mars electrified with “Unchained Melody” and “Jailhouse Rock.”
Impressed, Dr. Eva Dubin -- wife of HighBridge Capital Management’s Glenn Dubin -- said she is thinking about inviting Mars to entertain at a benefit for the Dubin Breast Center.
“You need someone young,” Dubin said at the post-concert dinner at the Pierre.
Sting and his wife, Trudie Styler, founders of the Rainforest Fund, sat in the center of the room with former President Bill Clinton, Donna Karan, Tom Hanks and Rita Wilson.
Hanks moved to the lectern when his services to record an answering-machine message went on auction.
“I’ll do whatever character you want -- Forrest Gump, Bill Clinton -- but I’m not doing it for $12,000,” Hanks said.
Bids climbed, Hanks persisted. “I won’t put my spirit into it, I’ll do it very perfunctorily, if I don’t get $25,000,” he said. The final bid: $26,000. A Chevy Volt also went for that sum.
As the band played “Hit the Road Jack,” Paul Tudor Jones of Tudor Investment Corp. gave yoga practitioner Styler a hug. His wife, Sonia, who stood nearby, is opening a yoga studio in Greenwich on April 14.
Michael Novogratz of Fortress Investment Group, headed out with the goody bag, containing such things as kale chips, a Trudie Styler yoga DVD and Revlon Lip Butter.
The Paris Review goody bag, also obtained last night at the literary magazine’s Spring Revel, was a bit lighter, yet heavier all the same. Inside: a Mast Brothers Brooklyn Blend chocolate bar and the Spring 2012 issue of the literary magazine, which features a recently discovered interview with Terry Southern.
“That lost interview was a windfall,” Lorin Stein, the Paris Review’s editor, said at Cipriani 42nd St.
Among those he addressed were people who have known windfalls: Chris Hughes, one of the founders of Facebook, now the editor in chief and publisher of the New Republic, and an honorary chairman of the event; Boaz Weinstein of Saba Capital Management LP, who dined with Ben Stiller and Stephen Gaghan, and Emile Westergaard of Perella Weinberg Partners, friends of Paris Review board member Antonio Weiss, Lazard’s global head of investment banking.
Talk about a genetic windfall: Chiara Mastroianni counts as her parents actors Catherine Deneuve and Marcello Mastroianni.
Fortunately, that hasn’t gone to her head.
“I had a pretty simple and, you know, everyday life,” she said at the Film Society of Lincoln Center gala presenting Deneuve with the Chaplin Award on April 2.
Mother and daughter dined at the David H. Koch Theater with those who’d given tributes, including directors Martin Scorsese and James Gray and actress Susan Sarandon, who described herself as the only speaker who had slept with Deneuve, in the film “The Hunger.”
Also present for the Daniel Boulud-catered affair: Leon Black of Apollo Global Management LLC and Thomas H. Lee of Lee Equity Partners.
And now for something more bucolic: Also on April 2, tents and recorded birdsong transformed Avery Fisher Hall into a summer camp.
The occasion was a fundraiser for Paul Newman’s Serious Fun Children’s Network. The nonprofit formerly known as the Association of Hole in the Wall Camps operates 28 camps and programs for children with serious illnesses.
On the program: Elvis Costello, Paul Simon and Trisha Yearwood -- not exactly sounding like they were singing around a campfire -- and camp alumni, who traded jokes with Tina Fey and Jimmy Fallon.
Actor Jake Gyllenhaal said Newman was embarrassed that his charity-supporting salad dressing outgrossed his films.
(Amanda Gordon is a writer and photographer for Muse, the arts and leisure section of Bloomberg News. Any opinions expressed are her own.)