Where patrons enjoyed some Champagne with their La Bohème, Tosca, and Turandot.
Tell me about your dress.
It’s from Africa. I’ve been spinning the cape around, and I feel like an African queen. Of course, I’m soaking it in. I’m drama all the way. My daughter ordered it for me. I have a really, really great daughter. She knows I’m having a hard time at my job right now and that, honestly, I’m super-broke. I love the opera and I’m obsessed with New York, so she got us a room at the Hyatt and also the tickets for tonight — on opposite sides of the room because it was very last minute.
Have you met anyone?
Yes. Two handsome men — one black, one white. Since my husband died, this is the first time I’m waking up and starting to take note. I won’t get into it further, but both of them were very, very nice. So we’ll see.
What does MC. stand for?
“Merrycarol.” I was born on Christmas, and my mom inexplicably let these nuns in the hospital name me. Then she had to go home and tell her Jewish husband, her Jewish mother, her Jewish father, and her Jewish in-laws what she had done.
You lived in Alaska?
Yes, for 18 years. My background is in fashion in New York: editorials, styling. Tonight, Mercedes Bass said about my dress, “You live in Alaska. Where would you wear something like that?” I said I still dress, just no one notices. I mean, I have designated snow stilettos.
What kind of law do you study?
I’m a first year at American, so just torts, property, the standards. I was an international-affairs major for undergrad but spent most of my time studying classical voice. I still sing at home — though I worry about disturbing my neighbors. My voice gets pretty loud.
What’s the vibe here tonight?
I went to an opera event here in the fall, and it felt like a business event.
Tonight, people are really rolling down their pantyhose and cutting a rug.
*This article appears in the January 20, 2020, issue of New York Magazine. Subscribe Now!