The Bangles, the American all-female band best known for the hit singles “Walk Like an Egyptian” and “Manic Monday” will play June 5, after Saturday’s live auction and dinner.
Will bidders, who will have just disposed of their diposable income, feel like dancing? That’s the question.
“It’s the 30th anniversary of the auction and it’s time to shake it up a bit,” said Terry Hall, who heads the public relations for the Napa Vintners Association, the auction organizers.
The band originated in the early 1980s, scoring several hits in the decade, with the worldwide #1 hit “Walk Like an Egyptian” bringing the band firmly into mainstream America.
Organizers have not disclosed how much they’re paying the band for the gig.
This year the auction is foregoing a headliner emcee. Last year, you recall, it was loosely emceed by wine educator Kevin Zraly of New York City, best known for creating “Windows On The World Wine Course.” (Some may remember that in 2008 then “Tonight Show” host Jay Leno was the headliner. The vintners association wouldn’t disclose how much Leno charged other than to say he worked for a reduced rate as a favor to the auction.” )
As for celebrity guests, guess who’s not coming to the auction?
Sofia Vergara, the actress who plays Gloria in ABC’s hit sitcom “Modern Family,” was going to come and it was twittered in a nanosecond once the press release was posted a week ago. But apparently Vergara now has a conflict, although another cast member may take her place.
Vergara, the passionate, hot-headed Colombian married to Jay, is part of an auction lot that offers a walk-on role in the hot new television comedy.
In addition to 15-minutes of fame, the lot also offers two couples a three night stay at the Beverly Wilshire, a Four Seasons property, and dinner at Melissa, a two-star Michelin-star restaurant in Los Angeles. The couples will then be whisked away to Cabo San Lucas for a three-night stay. Upon return the couples will be gifted with a five-year vertical of Frank Family’s Winston Hill (2002 to 2006) and a 12 bottles of 2005 Promise Cabernet Sauvignon.
This lot is one of the most spicy among the 41 bidders will compete for during the live auction, and Hall said “we have a robust group of top bidders coming this year … some that haven’t come in the last couple of years.”
Last year the auction raised $4.3 million, down from a record $10.3 million in 2008. With auctions as the liveliest of economic indicators, what will this year bring?
“Honestly we don’t know what the outcome will be,” Hall said. “The vintners have been more generous than ever in terms of great lots … does it take your mind off the recession, maybe … people are cautious but optimistic.”