Major royalty always sends Los Angeles atwitter. Now that British Ambassador to the United States Sir Antony Acland has revealed that their royal highnesses, the Duke and Duchess of York (Prince Andrew and his bride, the former Miss Sarah Ferguson), will be coming to town sometime during the U.K./L.A. '88 "A Celebration of British Arts" events, the social calendar is starting to plump.
The problem is that dates for balls, receptions, luncheons can't quite be pinned down because his royal highness is subject to the exigencies of his naval commitment. British Consul Gen. Donald F. Ballentyne is working on it. And all hope that one of the best-known naval helicopter pilots in the world (that's the prince's role with the Royal Navy) will be released to launch the Feb. 4 opening of the David Hockney retrospective at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art.
Preliminary plans are tilting toward a ball, luncheons, receptions surrounding the festival, which is being super-minded by Bruce Joseph. It runs through April of 1988, with, at this point, more than 22 individual events including one evening with the Los Angeles Philharmonic playing British works and another with the Birmingham Orchestra.
This celebration of British and multi-disciplinary arts--opera, theater, film, all kinds of music--will also include fashion. British officials are currently negotiating with a major department store. Supermarkets will promote British foods. It will be a wonderful season of scones and cream.
COOKIE CROWD: Girl Scouts will be staging their Cookie Sale between Friday and April 6. It's part of the 75th anniversary of girl scouting. Scouts will sell at various sites throughout the community--banks, shops, street corners, door to door (but only with adults, as a safety precaution). On two Saturdays, March 21 and 26, the public can buy the cookies at Thrifty Drug Stores between 10 a.m. and 2 p.m. The public has been munching more--a few percentage points each year--and if this sale is "really successful," the Los Angeles Girl Scout Council expects to net just under $1 million.
DANCING FRIENDS: Friends of the Joffrey Ballet salute the heyday of MGM's musical past with their second annual dinner gala March 28 at Filmland Corporate Center. June Allyson, Leslie Caron, Cyd Charisse and Ginger Rogers will star in film clips. James R. Watterson, special events committee co-chairman, says the dazzling high-tech MGM/UA home will be a perfect backdrop for the dance tribute. Most of the dancing honorees are expected to appear at the $135-a-ticket evening. Jerold Franks produces the gala. Each reservation includes a bonus ticket to a Sunday night performance of the Joffrey Ballet in the orchestra or Founders Circle.
TODAY: Two-time Emmy Award winner Sally Struthers will be at the Beverly Hills Presbyterian Church this evening at 7:30 to read Scripture with a presentation of Handel's "Messiah Part II" by the church choir, soloists and orchestra under the direction of Nick Strimple. Twelve philanthropies, including the Mary Magdalene Project, People Assisting the Homeless and Meals on Wheels will benefit. Sally's a board member and top fund-raiser for the International Christian Children's Fund, aiding the hungry in Guatemala, Thailand and Africa. Mrs. Delbert Mann chairs the event, assisted by Nancy Bott, Jo Schiff, Mitzi Rogers, Brooke Brooks, Richard Green and David Doane.
Pinafores of the League for Crippled Children host their Easter Egg Roll and 38th annual benefit luncheon today at the Beverly Wilshire, according to Joyce Brooks.
RED LETTER DATES: Jacqueline Piatigorsky and the Chamber Music/L.A. Society express appreciation to contributors with a private concert next Sunday afternoon at her Brentwood home. The Society produces the annual Chamber Music/L.A. Festival (in May at the Japan America Theater and at Smothers Theater at Pepperdine University). The ensemble is composed of the proteges of Jascha Heifetz and Mrs. Piatigorsky's late husband, Gregor. The Sunday affair will feature Festival Artistic Director Yukiko Kamei on violin and pianist Doris Stevenson.
The Alvin Ailey American Dance Company premieres on the West Coast on March 24 at the Wiltern Theater. The California Medical Center/Los Angeles' Gilbert W. Lindsay Children's Center (the only hospital-based center for the treatment and prevention of child abuse in the central city) will be the recipient of the gala, says Gwendolyn W. Young. Mayor Tom Bradley is honorary chairman.
UPSTAGING: More than 350 are expected Wednesday, says President Madeline Moore, for the Children's Service League 39th annual Rainbow Luncheon in the Grand Ballroom of the Beverly Wilshire. Lillian Casady is luncheon chairman. Orthopedic surgeon Lewis E. Zionts will talk about children's braces.