by Marci Weiner
28 Feb 2003

Valentine’s Day turned out to be Valentine’s week here on the Hollywood Beat, starting with a ladies only dinner at  Pammolli Ristorante in Beverly Hills, hosted by Academy Award nominated songwriter Carol Connors. The theme was “Men come and go — but girlfriends are forever;” and among the participants were Rhonda Shear (former host of USA Network’s Up All Night); Charlene Tilton (best known as Lucy Ewing in the award-winning Dallas); famed classical guitarist Leona Boyd, hotelier (Four Seasons) Beverly Cohen and fellow columnist Anita Talbert.

   Between dishing the dirt with this group of savvy sweethearts, we enjoyed a five course “Passion Menu” featuring jumbo Hawaiian prawns and Penne sauteed with the house bolognese sauce. Delicious! Thanks go to master chef Massimo Ormani and his lovely wife Daniella for introducing us to their romantic new restaurant

     Among the most interesting news we picked up at this dinner was that Connors has been blessed to write the lyrics for Wladyslaw Szpilman’s songbook. He is the composer/pianist from Poland, about whom the Academy award nominated film The Pianist is based. His son, Andrzej, pictured here with Connors, has commissioned her to write four songs, with the stipulation that not one word of his father’s music can be changed. A real challenge for her, but illustrates he is very much the custodian of his dad’s legacy.