Express

Originally Published: March 19, 1974

Mr Alice In Wonderland

When the party of beautiful people got together for a pop phenomenon.

Author: Geoffrey Levy

Late night sittings, party talk, people of widely different backgrounds and interests don't have to be acrimonious or divisive. Not when the party is made up of the beautiful people whose social wonderland - not far from Westminster in distance but a world away in style - remains apparently indestructible. A world when meaningful discussions on the economy means for many inhabitants whether or not to serve non-vintage champagne. You don't see many M.P.s among them. In fact the closest the guest of honour in this gathering ever got to an M.P. was when Mr Leo Abse, the Member for Pontypool, tried to get him banned from Britain because his stage act was considered a new high (or low) in depraved pop routines.

This is, of course, the man who calls himself Alice Cooper, a preacher's son from Arizona. His complete arrival in the in-world was confirmed by the party held for him in London's Hyde Park Gardens. It was held in the spacious and colourfully decorated flat of blonde Tessa Elwes, pioneer of runaway heiresses but now, at 33, a hard-working and successful interior decorator. She did her own flat, of course. The former Miss Kennedy is a good hostess.

Not too many people. Each one chosen to compliment the others. A mixture of young and mature, casual and formal, married and single, royalty and commoner. Ryan O'Neal brought the only girl who figures permanently in his romance-oriented life - his precocious cigarette-smoking, late-night-loving daughter, Tatum. A girl who has done nearly everything. Aged 10. Roger Moore shed his James Bond image by bringing his wife Luisa (he always does) and screen siren Joan Collins came with her husband, Ron Cass, a producer.

Other beautiful - in the old sense of the word - guests were Japanese-born Dewi Sukarno, once married to the once President of Indonesia and now the wife of Spanish financier Francisco Paesa, actress Fiona Lewis, daughter of a Southend solicitor, Firyal Mohammed, sister of King Hussain of Jordan, and Marissa Berens on, granddaughter of the great fashion designer Schiaparelli and now one of the hottest properties in films. Not forgetting the legs poking out in the right-hand corner of the picture. They belong to composer John Barry.

They all dined on avocado with caviar, and lamb, and later everyone watched a 16-minute clip from a new film Alice has made. Said Tessa: "I gave Alice a party because I'm a great fan. He's such a sweet chap, really. It was a lovely party - everyone got on marvelously. Congratulations for Tessa on her party were, needless to say, unanimous.