Met Gala is today: How to watch celebs arrive for 'fashion's biggest night'
Plus, who's hosting and everything else to know.
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The Met Gala is upon us again, after the pandemic canceled last year's event. Instead of an event in May, when the gala usually takes place at New York's Metropolitan Museum of Art, there'll be an "intimate gala" Monday to kick off a two-part exhibit by the Met's Costume Institute. The exhibit will touch on sociopolitical topics including body inclusivity and gender fluidity, according to organizers.
You'll be able to watch a livestream of the event and see some of the world's biggest celebrities arrive on the steps of the Met in their eye-catching ensembles. Here's everything to know about how to catch the action, and how "fashion's biggest night out" is adapting to the COVID-19 pandemic.
When will this year's event take place and who is chairing it?
With the coronavirus pandemic still disrupting everyday life and major events alike, the Met Gala will look different this year. (The event was called off last year.)
The Costume Institute's two-part exhibit kicks off with "In America: A Lexicon of Fashion," opening Sept. 18 at the Anna Wintour Costume Center at the Met. This exhibit will be laid out like a home, according to Vogue, with rooms named to reflect our connections with fashion, such as "Well-Being" for the kitchen galleries and "Aspiration" for the office. Themes like joy, rebellion and nostalgia will be incorporated into each room. The porch, for instance, will reflect warmth and feature coats from designers like André Walker. The garden will represent joy and feature the Oscar de la Renta floral dress Taylor Swift wore to this year's Grammys.
Part two of the exhibit, called "In America: An Anthology of Fashion," opens May 5, 2022. This'll focus on fashion inclusivity and will take place in the period rooms of the museum's American Wing. Each room will include cinematic scenes by American film directors that portray a different history of American fashion.
"Key themes will include the emergence of an identifiable American style and the rise of the named designer with an individual aesthetic vision," Andrew Bolton, the Wendy Yu Curator in Charge of the Costume Institute, told Vogue.
There'll be a second Met Gala on May 2, 2022, to celebrate the opening of the second part of the exhibit.
How can I watch?
Vogue is hosting a livestream of the event, which kicks off at 2:30 p.m. PT/5:30 p.m. ET on Monday, Sept. 13. It'll be hosted by actor and recording artist Keke Palmer and actor, writer and director Ilana Glazer. The two will interview guests as they arrive on the gala's red carpet. You can catch the livestream here, or by going to Vogue's Twitter account.
What'll be the theme of the gala?
In addition to celebrating American designers, the gala's theme will honor the cultural, political and social events that have happened during the pandemic.
"I think that the emphasis on conscious creativity was really consolidated during the pandemic and the social justice movements," Bolton told Vogue. "And I've been really impressed by American designers' responses to the social and political climate, particularly around issues of body inclusivity and gender fluidity, and I'm just finding their work very, very self-reflective. I really do believe that American fashion is undergoing a Renaissance."
This is all taking place as more people call for change in the fashion industry, which they say has long failed to address racism. Last year, Beverly Johnson, the first Black model to be on the cover of Vogue in 1974, wrote an op-ed in The Washington Post slamming both the fashion industry and the magazine, writing, "my race limited me to significantly lower compensation than my white peers," and that "the industry was slow to include other black people in other aspects of the fashion and beauty industry." This came shortly after Wintour reportedly wrote an email to Vogue staff acknowledging the magazine hasn't adequately supported Black staffers and has featured images or stories that were "hurtful or intolerant."
What's the dress code?
Gala guests have been asked to dress to the theme of American Independence. As Vogue put it: "After an isolating and challenging year, we are celebrating a newfound sense of freedom: to gather, to travel, and to get utterly dressed to the nines-or better yet, into the double digits."
It's anyone's guess how attendees and designers will interpret this dress code. But, Vogue notes, "We're expecting a red carpet filled with anything-goes gowns and a dash of something star-spangled."
Who usually shows up to the Met Gala?
Some of the world's top celebrities have graced the Met's red carpet, including Beyonce, Taylor Swift, Priyanka Chopra Jonas, Pharrell Williams, Katy Perry, Rihanna, Jared Leto, Lady Gaga, and Harry Styles. Vogue says around 600 people attend the event each year.
The creative, extravagant and sometimes outrageous ensembles donned by these celebrities are widely dissected on social media and by various publications. Outfits like Ezra Miller's 2019 Met Gala look, in which he carried a face mask on a stick and had his own face painted with five optical-illusion eyeballs next to his real eyes, tend to make headlines and become a point of conversation for fans and critics alike in the days -- and sometimes years -- to come.
How much does it cost to go?
If you're an invited guest, you don't have to pay anything to attend. If you score a chance to buy tickets, get ready to fork over around $30,000, plus another $275,000 for tables, according to Vogue. Pocket change, really.
What's on the menu?
This year, the Met Gala menu will be fully plant-based. Ten New York chefs from various backgrounds will offer up recipes representing their take on American cuisine.
"We thought it was important to really talk about what's present, what's happening--how food is changing in America," chef Marcus Samuelsson told Bon Appétit. "We want to be the future of American food, of plant-based food. That conversation is happening now."