President and Mrs. Bush aren’t much for formal entertaining – but for royalty, well, it’s a must. The first couple is hosting a lunch on Nov. 2 for Charles, Prince of Wales, and the Duchess of Cornwall, as well as a dinner at the White House that same evening. Now that’s the hot ticket. It’s the royal couple’s first official visit to the U.S. since their marriage. British Ambassador David Manning and Mrs. Catherine Manning are hosting Charles and Camilla at a reception the following evening.Also on Prince Charles’ schedule for the three-day whirlwind visit: The royal couple will meet with children in a workshop at the Folger Shakespeare Library and will lay a wreath at the World War II Memorial. They’ll also attend a seminar on osteoporosis at NIH and one on “Faith and Social Responsibility” at Georgetown University.
‘Cavalia’: Reinventing equestrian arts
The horses – 47 of them – are the stars of “Cavalia,” the unique theatrical tent show that combines equestrian arts, acrobatics and dreamlike visuals, opening this evening in Pentagon City and continuing through Nov. 15. “The production flows like a poem for the eyes and ears,” explains creator and artistic director Normand Latourelle of Montreal, also an originator of Cirque du Soleil. Each performance is different and has an element of surprise because much of the time the horses are free. “They play, and the show elicits an emotional reaction, a connection between the horse and performer,” Latourelle told me. “It’s a give-and-take relationship on stage.
“I want to be a partner with the horse. They are not a tool for us. The horse has to be happy.” And yes, the horses actually appear to be smiling. This is the one of the most amazing shows this columnist has seen, especially Estelle Delgado’s Roman post riding and jumping with four horses, and Frederic Pignon, 37, the Frenchman who calls himself a “horse listener.”
“Horses know better sounds than language. They understand gestures but are bilingual [French and English],” Pignon explained. For him, the greatest challenge is “to play with three stallions together without a fight.”
“The horses persuade me to do what they want to do. If they don’t like something because they’re bored or it’s painful, I can’t ask them to do it in the show. I learn from them. They express a lot with their eyes. I show them I try to understand, and then they communicate more.”
Brotman as prophet?
PR king Charlie Brotman, spotting D.C. City Council Chairman Linda Cropp talking with Fred Malek at the D.C. Cares benefit honoring Washington, D.C., booster and AOL co-founder Jim Kimsey at the Kennedy Center Friday evening, greeted the duo: “Is this the new mayor with the new baseball owner?” In unison, the two responded, “We hope so.” Across the room, Kimsey, who is part of the Washington Baseball Club with Malek, was not as overtly optimistic or at least exhibited politically correct sportsmanship when he said, “Just so the team wins.”
No more fiction from Jayson Blair
Disgraced former New York Times reporter Jayson Blair had a short-lived gig editing a book about poisoned Canadian prescriptions for Phoenix Books and backed by PhRMA. We hear that he wanted to ghostwrite the book for the original author, Julie Chrystyn. Then the publisher lined up a second author before determining that they were displeased with the manuscript.
Vice presidential chief of staff Scooter Libby, under fire, hobbling out of the Oval Office on crutches yesterday … University of Maryland men’s basketball coach Gary Williams, seeing actress/GOP activist Bo Derek across the room at Cafe Milano, asked his pal, former Rep. Tom McMillen, to make the introduction. It must have been successful since Williams spent the following three hours getting to know Dere… Chuck Conconi celebrating his birthday at the Palm on Saturday evening.