Inside the TIME100 Gala: Artists Meet the Titans

For the fifth year in a row, the award show will air on ABC, but Observer got a sneak peek.

Dua Lipa and Taraji P. Henson Photo by Cindy Ord/Getty Images for TIME

From across the long red carpet of the TIME100 gala, comedian Alex Edelman, seeing a barrage of icons waiting to get their photo taken, shouts “Patrick Mahomes!” Edelman was chatting with Oscar-winning La La Land composer Benj Pasek, his best friend and plus-one for the evening, in between interviews when he spotted the Kansas City Chiefs Quarterback posing for the cameras alongside his wife Brittany on the other end of the carpet.

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The Color Purple’s Fantasia Barrino got just as excited when she saw Uma Thurman, a few feet away in a silky purple gown. “Beautiful,” she said, looking at The Kill Room star owning the moment. Barrino wiped the sweat off her husband’s forehead as she waited in line for photos. Kelly Ripa walked by a few moments later and gave Barrino a hello kiss on the cheek.

Uma Thurman on the TIME100 gala carpet. Photo by Jared Siskin/Patrick McMullan via Getty Images

Colman Domingo! I want to meet Colman Domingo!” Edelman told Observer when asked about the other honorees he wanted to shake hands with on this special evening.

Edelman, Barrino, Mahomes, Domingo and Ripa are some of the luminaries being recognized as the most influential people in the world. Kylie Minigue, Jack Antonoff, Maya Rudolph, Jenny Holzer and Tory Burch are being honored with them.

“I was blown away,” Edelman, whose Broadway one-man-show Just For Us recently hit MAX, said about being on the list. In TIME Magazine, actress Phoebe Waller-Bridge pens a tribute to him. “We have been friends for a long time. I used to live on her mother’s couch so that seems like a pretty significant full-circle moment.”

Benj Pasek, Kylie Minogue, Alex Edelman and Dan Macsai. Photo by Cindy Ord/Getty Images for TIME

TIME CEO Jessica Sibley was one of the first to arrive for Thursday’s event at Frederick P. Rose Hall, Home of Jazz at Lincoln Center. She asked to pose for photos with the photographers in the opposite direction of the step-and-repeat because “they make the night happen.” For the fifth year in a row, the award show hosted by Taraji P. Hensen will air on ABC. And this year, the airing happens to fall on Mother’s Day, May 12. “We have fifty-one honorees that are women,” Sibley said proudly, also noting this year’s gala had a historic number of honorees in attendance.

Human Rights President Kelley Robinson was “floored!” upon hearing the news she was selected in this year’s class of leaders, titans, innovators, icons, pioneers and artists. Robinson is the first Black, queer woman to hold the position. “Being here is an incredible honor and I take this as a responsibility and call to action to keep this work going,” she told Observer.

Visual artist and illuminating photographer, LaToya Ruby Frazier, is also a gala honoree. “It’s a complete affirmation that artistic work like mine is really important to our society,” she told Observer. For the last twenty-five years, Frasier has been working on a 10,000-square-foot, ten-room exhibition called “Monuments of Solidarity” at New York’s Museum of Modern Art that opens May 12. “Photographs start to come off of the wall and become installations, and large sculptures immerse the audience,” Frazier teased.

LaToya Ruby Frazier. Photo by Jared Siskin/Patrick McMullan via Getty Images

Fresh off her Academy Award win for Best Supporting Actress in The Holdovers, Da’Vine Joy Randolph was one of the final few to arrive in a beige gown and long train. Her dedicated publicist, Marla Farrell, who Randolph thanked in her Oscars acceptance speech, was there too, working to place the train strategically for photos.

Michael J. Fox received the Impact Award presented by NBC’s Willie Geist. “Growing up, when I dreamed of someday meeting Michael J. Fox, it was while time-traveling with him in the DeLorean or playing basketball with his teenage werewolf-turned-big man on campus—a plotline we kind of all just went along with because we loved Michael so much,” he said in his opening remarks.

Later in the night, Alex Edelman eventually did meet up with Colman Domingo—and Patrick Mahomes—at which point he offered up the football player some matzah to try since it was Passover.

Michael J Fox and Willie Geist

Michael J. Fox and Willie Geist. Photo by Cindy Ord/Getty Images for TIME

Aja Wilson and Maya Rudolph

A’ja Wilson and Maya Rudolph. Photo by Jemal Countess/Getty Images for TIME

Dua Lipa

Dua Lipa performs onstage during the 2024 TIME100 Gala. Photo by Sean Zanni/Patrick McMullan via Getty Images

Kelley J. Robinson

Kelley J. Robinson. Photo by Sean Zanni/Patrick McMullan via Getty Images

Kelly Ripa, Billy Porter and Mark Consuelos

Kelly Ripa, Billy Porter and Mark Consuelos. Photo by Cindy Ord/Getty Images for TIME

Dev Patel

Dev Patel. Photo by Cindy Ord/Getty Images for TIME

Tory Burch and Pierre-Yves Roussel

Tory Burch and Pierre-Yves Roussel. Photo by Jemal Countess/Getty Images for TIME

Thelma Golden

Thelma Golden. Photo by Sean Zanni/Patrick McMullan via Getty Images

Taraji P. Henson

TIME100 gala host Taraji P. Henson. Photo by Cindy Ord/Getty Images for TIME

Osas Ighodaro and Jessica Sibley

Osas Ighodaro and Jessica Sibley. Photo by Jemal Countess/Getty Images for TIME

Billy Porter

Billy Porter. Photo by Jared Siskin/Patrick McMullan via Getty Images

Eleanor Dixon-Hobbs and Loren Hammonds

Eleanor Dixon-Hobbs and Loren Hammonds. Photo by Jemal Countess/Getty Images for TIME

Maya Rudolph, Alex Edelman and Benj Pasek

Maya Rudolph, Alex Edelman and Benj Pasek. Photo by Cindy Ord/Getty Images for TIME

Maria Bello and Dominique Crenn

Maria Bello and Dominique Crenn. Photo by Sean Zanni/Patrick McMullan via Getty Images

Merrill Fabry, Lucy Feldman and Elizabeth Jean Carroll

Merrill Fabry, Lucy Feldman and Elizabeth Jean Carroll. Photo by Jemal Countess/Getty Images for TIME

Alex Edelman and Motaz Azaiza

Alex Edelman and Motaz Azaiza. Photo by Cindy Ord/Getty Images for TIME

Colman Domingo

Colman Domingo. Photo by Cindy Ord/Getty Images for TIME

Inside the TIME100 Gala: Artists Meet the Titans