It’s not every day that someone celebrates their 200th birthday.
You read that right, TWO HUNDRED years. That spans almost all of the history of this country. Of course, the birthday isn’t that of a person, but of one of America’s most storied brands, that brand being Brooks Brothers.
Held at Jazz at Lincoln Center’s Frederick P. Rose Hall – Brooks Brothers threw themselves a birthday party of unseen proportions. Starting with their iconic blue carpet, nearly 1,000 guests descended into the hall for a cocktail hour prior to the show beginning, and my what a show it was. What followed the cocktail hour was a jazz show that might go down in New York folklore as one of the best this city has seen. The show had EVERYONE – and we really mean everyone. An ensemble of nearly 100 musical artists and Jazz stars that included Alison Krauss, Jon Batiste & the Dap Kings, Mark O’Connor, Chris Thile, Joey Alexander, Jared Grimes, Jessica Vosk, Ledisi, Damien Sneed’s Chorale La Chateau AND a surprise performance by none other than Paul Simon. Yes, the Simon of the legendary Simon and Garfunkel came out to join the set. The performance closed with the entire cast on stage for a giant cake, fireworks and an incredible rendition of Stevie Wonder’s Happy Birthday led by Gospel legend, Shirley Caesar.
As with all good shows, there’s always an after party and this one was incredibly decadent. Jazz at Lincoln Center was transformed into a full-scale after-party where partygoers were treated to a visual history of the brand while enjoying luxury cocktails and light bites. The after party had ANOTHER after party in Dizzy’s Club Coca-Cola which was transformed from Jazz club to a gilded speakeasy featuring live performances by Sammy Miller and the Congregation. If it all felt very Great Gatsby-esque in terms of decadence, it’s because it was.
VIP guests such as Yara Shahidi, Zac Posen, Katie Holmes, Brendan Fraser, and others mingled and danced all night with guests while enjoying the live music in one room and DJ Mad Marj in the other. Congratulations to Brooks Brothers on their 200 years, can’t wait for your next birthday.