The United States has proven to be an entertainment and fashion powerhouse, with the all-out and colorful American fashion-themed 2021 Met Gala. Interesting to note is how this year’s event had many Gen Z key players as headliners. With the 23-year-old inaugural poet Amanda Gorman, 25-year-old “Dune” star Timothée Chalamey, 23-year-old tennis champion, Naomi Osaka, and 19-year-old music prodigy Billie Ellish as hosts, the Met Gala clearly gave its nod to youthfulness and trendiness. The honorary chairs for the Met Gala 2021 included Vogue’s Anna Wintour, Adam Mosseri, the chief executive of Instagram, and the designer Tom Ford.
The dress code for the Met Gala 2021 was “American Independence,” and the event kicked off with a high-energy performance by the Brooklyn United marching band. The red, white and blue custom Adidas jumpsuits by Stella McCartney that the band members had on added color to the whole event while Nia Dennis performed some acrobatics as the band performed. Anna Wintour, the longtime chairperson of the event, was dressed in a floral gown with a ruffled neck to pay respect to Oscar de la Renta, her designer friend who passed away in 2014. Her dress, however, was distinct from the sea of patriotic guests who all complied with the event’s fashion theme.
The gala, which has also been famously tagged “the party of the year,” makes a considerable part of New York’s return to the social scene, alongside the reopening of the U.S. Open, Broadway shows, and indoor dining. Despite all the reopenings, many designers based in Europe, who are also regular guests at the gala, did not attend for various reasons. There have also been speculations that some Hollywood stars decided not to grace the event with their presence because of either health concerns or to avoid making themselves look bad by partying while people are sick. And some could not attend because they had not been vaccinated—a requirement for all the guests. This perhaps explains why the guests are a lot younger than usual and fewer (as the guest list was downsized by a third for health and safety concerns). Some notable absentees include Nicki Minaj, Lady Gaga, Zendaya, Harry Styles, Blake Lively, and Billy Porter.
As celebrities arrived on the red carpet, a crowd of protesters gathered on a blocked-off Fifth Avenue to demonstrate for racial justice. Police ended up arresting a number of protesters. It made a jarring image of protesters struggling with the police, while the party went on inside.
It was another night of glitz and glamor in Hollywood as famous faces like Kim Kardashian, Billie Eilish, Anna Wintour, Lil Nas X, Rihanna, A$AP Rocky, and a host of others posed on the red carpet in elaborate designs inspired by the theme.
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