We are proud to present the sequel to René’s All That Glitters Is Not Gold. He will discuss the lives of five more women whose wealth and fame did not bring them happiness, begging the question: Are Diamonds Really A Girl’s Best Friend?
As a hospital administrator, in 1980 René opened the famous Princess Margaret Hospital in Windsor, UK. Through this endeavor he became friends with Princess Margaret, Queen Elizabeth’s only sibling. After several failed relationships, the once first-in-line of succession to the British throne, led a lonely life, rife with illness, and died at age 71.
Few people know about Queen Elizabeth’s mother-in-law, Princess Alice of Battenberg. As Queen Victoria’s great-granddaughter, Alice was born in Windsor Castle (1885) and died in Buckingham Palace (1969). Misdiagnosed as schizophrenic, she was hospitalized against her will and subjected to horrible experimentation. During WW2 she sheltered countless Jewish refugees and, later, founded a Greek Orthodox nursing order of nuns. Her amazing inner strength, desire for frugality and deep faith make her one of the 20th century’s most misunderstood royals.
Marilyn Monroe, the blonde bombshell who cooed that “diamonds are a girl’s best friend,” became the epitome of a striking and glamorous performer surrounded by tragedy. Her death at age 36 has been steeped in mystery ever since 1962, when it was initially deemed a suicide by barbiturates.
Known as “the little Sparrow,” Edith Piaf was raised by prostitutes in Paris. She was discovered singing on a street corner and became one of the most recognizable voices of the 20thcentury with songs like “La Vie en Rose,” “Milord” and “Non je ne regrette rien.” Years of alcohol abuse and copious amounts of medications, as well as a series of car accidents, led to her death at age 47 in 1963.
1963 was the year another famous singer was born: Whitney Houston. She grew up with music in her family: Dionne Warwick was her aunt, and Aretha Franklin a close family friend. In the 1980s Whitney’s star rapidly rose to great fame. Unfortunately, fame and fortune took their toll on her, and she died in a bathtub from a cocaine overdose at 48 years old.
René, the ultimate raconteur, will describe these tragic stories in his inimitable fashion, using dozens of glamour shots and newsreel clips while attempting to answer the question: are diamonds a girl’s best friend?