IT WAS fairly dark in Holmfirth Picturedrome last Saturday night, but I think I counted five Amy Winehouses.
Considering the poor girl is dead, this is a remarkable achievement by any standards. One would have been enough.
Natalie Holdsworth was celebrating her 30th birthday and had decided we should all turn up as Hollywood characters.
This gave guests a huge amount of scope. Most took up the challenge handsomely.
I’m not sure how Amy Winehouse figures in any Hollywood lineup, but maybe if Lady Gaga gets to play her in a biopic, she will qualify retrospectively.
Part of the fun was trying to work out who was playing whom.
Some were instantly obvious – Marge Simpson, Mrs Doubtfire, the Blues Brothers, two excellent Dorothys from The Wizard of Oz and a Hagrid from the Harry Potter films.
There was an unbelievably sophisticated Queen of Hearts – the character played by Helena Bonham Carter in Tim Burton’s Alice in Wonderland – and a terrific Audrey Hepburn from Breakfast at Tiffany’s.
Sam and Dobby were almost unrecognisable as characters from Cool Runnings, the comedy about a Jamaican bobsleigh team.
Natalie, meanwhile, was a stunning Marilyn Monroe, determined, it seemed, to take on that lady’s charisma and joie de vivre.
This is the strange thing about fancy dress. Most people who are not actually repelled by dressing up as someone other than themselves find themselves tempted to forget who they are and take on some of the attributes of the character they are playing.
At a do at Fixby Golf Club a few years ago I dressed up as an RAF officer and could scarcely resist saluting people.
If I’d stayed in character would I have ended up saying ‘what-ho’ and calling aeroplanes ‘crates’?
One recent garden party called for a hippy outfit. Adding the word ‘man’ to the end of every sentence and giving people a peace V-sign was almost impossible to avoid.
Clr Andrew Cooper looked either astonished or peeved – I couldn’t quite make out which in the gloom – that I didn’t immediately spot that he was Sean Connery, the monk from Name Of The Rose.
Things got worse. Former Kirklees mayor Julie Stewart-Turner looked stunning – but as what? I didn’t dare ask on the night and had to ring up later.
“I was Liz Taylor in Cleopatra,” she said rather sadly. You were super, darling, you really were.
If you were wondering, partygoers, who was the sneaky paparazzo, it was the sheikh.
And I wasn’t a sheikh. I was Lawrence of Arabia and wife Pip was Fatima the Turkish Delight, whose part in that classic David Lean film was accidentally dropped on the cutting-room floor, so it is said.