Courtesy Michael Kors Naomi Campbell, Helena Christensen, Carolyn Murphy, Shalom Harlow, Karen Elson
Michael Kors has amassed celebrity supporters and supermodel friends alike since launching his namesake label in 1981, so it’s no surprise that his 40th anniversary show was a fashion reunion for the ages.
On Tuesday, iconic faces who rose to fame alongside the American designer in the ’80s and ’90s including Naomi Campbell, Helena Christensen, Carolyn Murphy, Shalom Harlow and Karen Elson (pictured above) joined forces with catwalk fixtures like Bella Hadid, Irina Shayk, Ashley Graham, Liya Kebede and Paloma Elsesser (pictured below) to present the label’s Fall/Winter 2021 collection and celebrate Kors’ milestone moment.
Filmed on location in New York City’s Times Square and broadcasted on michaelkors-collection.com and the brand’s digital channels, the star-studded show was inspired by the glamour of “opening night” and “stepping out once the world opens up again,” according to a press release.
“For my 40th anniversary collection, I was really thinking about the joy in getting dressed up and stepping out for a night on the town,” Kors said.
Courtesy Michael Kors Bella Hadid, Irina Shayk, Ashley Graham, Liya Kebede and Paloma Elsesser
The designer continued, “Whether you’re going to the office, having a casual dinner in the neighborhood or are in fact ready to go to a party again, this collection is all about making every moment a special occasion and feeling confident, glamorous and upbeat. There’s a sense of timelessness and big-city optimism that has been a linchpin of Michael Kors since the very beginning—a yin-and- yang balance between opulence and simplicity, something that’s laid-back and at the same time luxurious.”
The presentation opened with a message of gratitude from Kors’ himself, followed by a short film created by actor/director/producer Erich Bergen. Shot at the legendary theater district restaurant Sardi’s, the introductory segment featured cameos from celebrities and Broadway A-listers like Billy Porter, Bette Midler, Rosario Dawson, Debra Messing, Alan Cumming and more.
“The theater is the heartbeat and the pulse of New York City and an endless source of inspiration for me,” Kors — whose company made a donation to The Ators Fund in support of the theater industry amid the pandemic — explained, “so to see Broadway shut down has been really heartbreaking.”
“It’s an honor and a dream come true to celebrate my 40th at Shubert Theatre and to have someone as brilliantly talented as [composer] Rufus Wainwright perform live. This show is my fantasy night out.”