Loving Up the Lansbury! The National Corporate Theatre Fund honors the great Angela Lansbury at Cipriani’s Pegasus in Rockefeller Center. Murder, She Wrote was our absolute favorite show 15 years ago, so we called her up immediately and she was delightfully humble! “You can be only honored so many times, and there comes a point when you tell yourself ‘Thank you very much, but, you know …’” said Ms. Lansbury. She added, “There’s never enough money for theater these days,” and the gala is raising money for that purpose. Ms. Lansbury said that Jessica Fletcher’s fan base has not dwindled (the show went off the air in 1996). Some fans “kind of clutch on to [Murder, She Wrote] as a lifesaving device,” she said. “I meet people all the time and they still watch it—these are adults. They associated it with very good times, and thank goodness. I’m terribly grateful and very proud of the show for that reason.” And of Jessica Fletcher herself: “I liked her liberal attitude to life. I felt that she was a woman with a very open mind. And she loved young people. I loved that about her.” Meanwhile, do gals make you guffaw? The female-empowerment rag Bust Magazine grabs the stage at Comix for “The Hysterical Fundraiser,” an all-woman comedy event (uh-oh) raising money for a larger festival in October (double uh-oh). Explained host Carolyn Castiglia: “In light of all the recent Christopher Hitchens hoopla”—i.e., his recent screed in Vanity Fair on why the fairer sex isn’t funny—“I think Desiree [Burch], who founded this festival, said, ‘O.K., let’s just do something that puts this to rest once and for all. …’ It’s not necessarily about an über-feminist spirit. It’s just about girls who love life and love being a girl. It’s certainly by no means about being bitter with men and being sour grapes about the tits that were handed us. It’s like, ‘Oh, your tits are pretty, too, let’s go do something!’” Oh, let’s!
[National Corporate Theatre Fund’s 2008 Chairman’s Awards Gala, Cipriani’s Pegasus, 30 Rockefeller Center, 6:30 p.m., 212-750-6895; The Hysterical Fundraiser, Comix, 353 West 14th Street, 8 p.m., http://events.hystericalfestival.com]