(Back Row L-R) Tracey Edmonds, Lynn Whitfield, Ryan Tarpley, Debra Martin Chase, Andre Wells, Beverly Johnson (Front Row L-R) Diahann Carroll, Shauna Bain Smith, Dolores Robinson, and Cheryl Boone Isaacs. (Photo Credit: Earl Gibson III, Courtesy of EAW/The FrontPage Firm)
Beverly Hills, CA -- October 20, 2013 - It was a glorious night under the stars as the private dinner dubbed "House of Flowers" took shape on Saturday night at the home of veteran film and television producer Tracey Edmonds to honor two of Hollywood's trailblazing women of color - iconic actress Diahann Carroll and Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences newly elected President Cheryl Boone Isaacs. The event, produced by renowned event designer Andre Wells and public relations veteran Shauna Bain Smith, was co-hosted by Edmonds and Emmy© nominated film and television producer Debra Martin Chase, whose little black book helped deliver the extraordinary guest list of approximately 60 of the nation's most influential women of color.
Created to honor the accomplishments of trailblazing women such as Carroll and Boone Isaacs who have opened doors for many other women of color in the entertainment industry through their groundbreaking work, the event drew a star-studded group of attendees which included Debbie Allen, Angela Bassett, Suzanne de Passe, author and socialite Susan Fales-Hill, Beverly Johnson, BET Chairman and CEO Debra Lee, Fox Animation Studios president Vanessa Morrison, US Representative to the UN Crystal Nix Hines, Regina King, LaTanya Richardson Jackson, Essence Editor-In-Chief Vanessa Bush, talent manager Dolores Robinson, Access Hollywood's Shaun Robinson, Johnson Publishing Chairman Linda Johnson Rice and CEO Desiree Rodgers, Nickelodeon/Viacom EVP Marva Smalls, Anika Noni Rose, Jeanine Sherman-Barrios, Pauletta Washington, Lynn Whitfield, and Crystal McCrary-Anthony among others.
Dolores Robinson, Tracey Edmonds, Cheryl Boone Isaacs, Debra Martin Chase, and Angela Bassett. (Photo Credit: Earl Gibson III, Courtesy of EAW/The FrontPage Firm)
Honoree Diahann Carroll seemed visibly moved by the outpouring of admiration in the room, stating to Vanity Fair that "I have never felt like a trailblazer," but found the evening's sentiments "lovely," while fellow guest of honor Boone Isaacs called the evening "historic."
Wells, whose Washington, DC-based event production firm brought the "House of Flowers" theme to life at Edmonds' home, was honored to produce the momentous occasion.
"It was a magical evening and a privilege to honor such beauty and grace by creating an opulent, festive environment for these brilliant, gifted women to enjoy and celebrate one another," he stated.
The event co-producer, Shauna Bain Smith, a public affairs, lifestyle and communications veteran, served as creative director for the evening and conceived the "House of Flowers" theme inspired by Diahann Carroll's first Broadway play of the same name. Signature event collateral and he texquisite, one-of-a-kind invitations containing Bain Smith's prose were crafted by Andrea Liss of Hannah Handmade and truly set the tone for the extraordinary evening.
|The elegant designs created by Andre Wells and Andrea Liss were inspired by Diahann Carroll's trailblazing role in the Broadway play "House of Flowers". (Photo Credit: Earl Gibson III, Courtesy of EAW/The FrontPage Firm)|
"We wanted to bring together vibrant and blooming women to express our deep admiration for perennials like Diahann Carroll & Cheryl Boone Isaacs, while also supporting each other's growth in difficult terrain," said Bain Smith. "In our House of Flowers we are reminded that while a single blossom is lovely, a brilliant bouquet is magnificent!"
"Diahann Carroll and Cheryl Boone Isaacs are both true pioneers - one of the greatest entertainers in history who has transcended racial barriers throughout her career and the first African American president of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences," said Martin Chase. "I am so excited to bring together some of the most fabulous and accomplished women in America for an evening to celebrate these two fabulous Black women. They inspire us all to continue to strive for greatness."
|Ryan Tarpley, Angela Bassett, Andre Wells, Shauna Bain Smith. (Photo Credit: Earl Gibson III, Courtesy of EAW/The FrontPage Firm)|
"I am so thrilled to be able to help bring together and be a part of such a dynamic sisterhood of women to celebrate our roles in this industry," said Edmonds. "Diahann Carroll and Cheryl Boone Isaacs embody the values we are aiming to celebrate - individual strength and the ability to inspire and empower others to be our greatest selves!