When Prince plays an intimate show, Hollywood’s A-list is sure to turn out – and that was the case when the Purple One kicked off his “3121” concert series with two performances at the Roosevelt Hotel’s Blossom Room in Hollywood this weekend.
Celebs who scored coveted seats at Saturday’s show (tickets reportedly went for more than $1,000) included Penélope Cruz, Diddy, Hilary Swank (with boyfriend John Campisi), Nas and Kelis, Erykah Badu, Suge Knight, John Legend, Rick Ross, Nikka Costa, Topher Grace, Michelle Rodriguez, Jay Mohr and Nikki Cox.
Cruz and friends sat front and center – Diddy made a beeline for her as soon as she arrived – while at stage left Swank rubbed Campisi’s back and Grace, witnesses said, watched the show from the back of the room with a group of young women.
Throughout the two-hour concert, which kicked off around 12:30 a.m., Cruz was on her feet singing along – and just before 2 a.m. Prince let a back-up singer belt out “I Never Loved a Man” while he left the stage to sit next to Cruz as he played guitar for the song.
Minutes later, he returned for his encore, “Purple Rain” (Cruz turned to her friends and exclaimed, “Alright!’ as the first notes played) – for which he was joined onstage by Costa, who tore into the song, Janis Joplin-style. At a quarter past 2, a giddy Cruz and her pals exhorted Prince to return for a second encore. When he obliged, she sang along with him, eyes closed, to “Nothing Compares 2 U.” She was the last celeb to leave, an hour later.
Prince’s Sunday night show at the Blossom Room was a more subdued affair, both onstage and off: The singer surprised the mostly-industry crowd with an intimate acoustic set accompanied by his former Revolution bandmate Wendy Melvoin. Celebs in the audience included Tommy Lee (who bought Jägermeister shots for his section), matchbox twenty’s Rob Thomas and Brett Ratner, with rapper Heavy D.
• Reporting by REAGAN ALEXANDER