The first Monday night in May means one thing in New York City: the annual fashion extravaganza that is the Met Gala.
Because of the pandemic, it's actually been less than a year since the last Met Gala was held. But this annual high-stakes fashion soiree is a major money-maker for the Metropolitan Museum of Art's Costume Institute — and it's always an opportunity for mega-wattage stars and influencers to turn out in style. (Big names usually come for free, but for those who have to pay, tickets are $35,000 apiece, and the cost of tables ranges from $200,000 to $300,000.)
This year's gala hosts are actress Regina King, the omnipresent Lin-Manuel Miranda, actress Blake Lively and her husband, actor Ryan Reynolds. The gala's honorary chairs are Condé Nast global chief content officer Anna Wintour, head of Instagram Adam Mosseri, and fashion designer Tom Ford.
Earlier Monday, First Lady Jill Biden was the Met's special guest at the press launch of the Costume Institute's newest show, "In America: An Anthology of Fashion," which explores the evolution of American fashion from the 19th to late 20th centuries.
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Anastasia Tsioulcas is a correspondent on NPR's Culture desk. She is intensely interested in the arts at the intersection of culture, politics, economics and identity, and primarily reports on music. Recently, she has extensively covered gender issues and #MeToo in the music industry, including the trial and conviction of former R&B superstar R. Kelly; backstage tumult and alleged secret deals in the wake of sexual misconduct allegations against megastar singer Plácido Domingo; and gender inequity issues at the Grammy Awards.