Fashion week is cool and all, but we have to admit: even the glitziest runway shows and most Insta-worthy presentations get boring after a while. Which is why the style set has been buzzing about the Susan Alexandra show since before the invites went out this season. Susan Korn, the designer behind the beaded bags that hold as much status as a Birkin in a certain downtown crowd can always be counted on to present her new collection in a truly unique way. Last season, she hosted a whole Bat Mitzvah.
And the only way to top that, of course, was with a full-blown musical.
On Saturday morning, editors, influencers, and friends of the brand braved the icy wind to catch "Susan Alexandra: The Musical" in the subterranean performance space at Public Hotel. The brand's staple beaded purses lined the bar, which, at 11 am, was already impressively busy with cool kids ordering Ketel One Botanical cocktails (hey, it's Fashion Week - don't judge us). Some purses were piled high and filled with bags of Kettle Chips (#sponcon, baby), while one held court in a giant block of ice. There was certainly enough to take in already, but before long the lights dimmed, the crowd rushed to the stage, and the show began.
A production partnership between Susan and writer/director, MUR, the campy, uplifting, and deeply personal show tells Susan's story of trying to make it in New York, overcoming the feelings of self-doubt faced by just about every creative.
The cast, which included a colorful chorus line of comedians like Benito Skinner (a.k.a. Benny Drama), Lauren Servideo, and Mary Beth Barone, along with singer/actor Larry Owens (who voiced an adorably scruffy dog muppet named Pigeon), and Aisha Kerensa as Susan herself, danced and sang through four original songs, bags from the Fall/Winter 2020 collection on their arms.
One surprising cast member, to the delight of the fashion crowd, was former editor and perpetual street style star, Jessica Joffe, who held a beaded cigarette and red wine-shaped purse while playing a she-devil of a landlord, poking fun at the grim reality of the retail landscape. I have to say, days later, her song is still stuck in my head - as is the image of that beaded wine bag of my dreams.
Click through for snaps from the show that had everyone talking - and humming the tunes long after it was over.
[Photos by Jacqueline Justice, Sarah Schecker]