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Tuxes and Tiaras at the Met Ball and Childhood Foundation Gala

By Marcus Samuelsson | May 10, 2012

I always like to be out and about, but it’s rare that I have the opportunity to don my best two nights in a row. I’m sure you heard about the Costume Institute’s Met Ball (if you haven’t, it’s the fashion industry’s night to get as wild and glamorous as they can be), and Maya and I were beyond thrilled to attend this year’s opening of “Schiaperelli & Prada: Impossible Conversations“.

We both wore Ralph Lauren (Maya looked impossibly stunning) and the scene was just fantastic. Bruno Mars performed (his renditions of “Dirty Diana” and “Roxanne” killed!) and I got to catch up with some of my favorite Knicks players: Amar’e, Carmelo, Tyson. We sat with Chelsea Handler and Andre Balazs, chatted with Kanye and Rick Ross, and I took this gorgeous photo of Maya with Queen B.

Photo: Marcus Samuelsson

But before I could pack away my tux, Tuesday night was the World Childhood Foundation Gala dinner and Queen Silvia and Princess Madeleine of Sweden were the honored guests. Held at Gotham Hall, the atmosphere and tablescapes were fantastic and our team handled the menu for the night. (Who could believe a boy from Gburg would be cooking for the Queen of Sweden?) But I took in the moment and was very happy with how everything turned out. We served our cornbread with tomato jam, a beautiful spring asparagus dish, berbere chicken, fish and grits, and a decadent black and white mud cake.

But the night was truly about the money that was raised. Queen Silvia started the foundation in 1999 and has since raised nearly $60 million for education efforts for children in Lithuania, Latvia, Africa, Estonia, to name a few. And when we heard that a private dinner was auctioned off for $64K, we knew we were off to a good start.

A few behind-the-scenes shots from the gala:

For more photos of my events, follow me on Twitter (@MarcusCooks)

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