Lunch with Don Draper; CMU sweeps SuperStar contest; Britney says, 'Don't smoke weed'
April 10, 2009 4:00 AM
Evan Agostini/Associated Press
Countess LuAnn de Lesseps
From wire and Web reports
Care to schedule a lunch meeting with Don Draper?
Golden Globe-winning "Mad Men" star Jon Hamm is making himself available for lunch in Los Angeles to the winning bidder on eBay, the Associated Press reports.
The online auction benefits the Adrienne Shelly Foundation, which supports the artistic achievements of female filmmakers with scholarships and grants.
Other celebrities offered up for meal auction include Hamm's "Mad Men" co-star John Slattery, Paul Rudd, Kevin Smith, Nathan Fillion, Patrick Duffy, David Schwimmer, Julianna Margulies and others. The auctions are scheduled to end April 16.
Carnegie Mellon University students swept the "American Idol"-like Pittsburgh Campus SuperStar competition Sunday at Carnegie Music Hall in Oakland.
Senior Roberta Burke won the grand prize $5,000 scholarship with her rendition of Whitney Houston's "I Have Nothing." First runner-up, Lilli Passero, a freshman, swayed the audience with her jazzy performance of "Blues in the Night." Second runner-up Amanda Jane Cooper added variety to the show with her theatrical performance of "Gimme, Gimme." Each runner-up received a $1,000 scholarship prize.
The event, now in its third year, is a fundraiser for the Hillel Jewish University Center of Pittsburgh.
The new and improved Britney Spears apparently isn't a fan of cigarette smoke -- or any other kind of smoke, for that matter -- while she's performing.
Spears, 27, left the stage for about 30 minutes Wednesday night during a concert in Vancouver, B.C., apparently because of smoke in the audience.
The concert was halted about 15 minutes into her performance, and an announcer told concertgoers to put out their cigarettes. Some audience members grew impatient waiting for Spears and her troupe to return to the stage, The Vancouver Sun reported.
After she returned and ended the show, Spears -- who has been to rehab and is on the comeback trail after a long stretch of troubles -- told the crowd, "Don't smoke weed."
Spears' publicist, Holly Shakoor, issued a statement apologizing to fans about the delay. The statement said "crew members above the stage became ill due to a ventilation issue."
Recent "American Idol" reject Scott MacIntyre said he's glad for the stage the show gave him to share his story and his music.
The visually impaired MacIntyre, who was voted off this week, told a teleconference yesterday that he hopes his achievement of making the Fox singing competition's finals "encourages everyone to reach for their dreams" and never give up, the Associated Press reported.
MacIntyre, who is legally blind because of a genetic condition, also faced kidney failure that required an organ transplant in 2007.
The judges debated Wednesday whether to use their one-shot chance to save the contestant with the lowest number of audience votes.
MacIntyre, 23, of Scottsdale, Ariz., said he spoke to Simon Cowell afterward and sensed the "inner turmoil" the judge felt in ruling against him.
He said he stands by his performance of "The Search Is Over" and is looking forward to the "American Idol" concert tour.
"I've been dreaming of going on tour and playing show after show since I was a little kid," MacIntyre said, calling it "magical" to perform in front of a crowd.
Countess LuAnn de Lesseps, one of the sassy ladies of Bravo's "The Real Housewives of New York," said she was "blindsided" when her husband of 16 years ended their marriage.
Last week, she confirmed her separation from Count Alexandre de Lesseps, who appeared intermittently on "Real Housewives."
"After 16 years of being married, it's like something has died," said the countess. "And I'm going through a grieving process."
But at the same time, she said, "I'm trying to be positive and look at this as a turning point for me."
The former model, 43, confirmed a report that the breakup came after she received an e-mail message from the count, who spends much time overseas. The count, a Frenchman whose ancestor presented the Statue of Liberty to the United States, reportedly was having a relationship with another woman.
The countess and the count have a 14-year-old daughter, Victoria, and a 12-year-old son, Noel. They share homes on Long Island and in Manhattan.
Distance caused the couple to grow apart, she said.
"It's very difficult to live separate," she said. "He travels an awful lot and I was alone a lot. ... So I would say that that was one of the big factors for us."
Her book, "Class With the Countess," arrives Thursday. It contains advice on etiquette, social grace and background on her past, especially her life in Italy.
In the book, De Lesseps gives advice for handling a breakup, saying she's "a big believer that a better man is just around the corner."
Doe she still believe that?
"You won't find better than my husband," she said. "He is a great man. I know he has his faults, as we all do. ... Another love, hopefully, (is) waiting for me around the corner."