Rihanna hosted her annual Diamond Ball Thursday evening in N.Y.C. and true to form, she dazzled from every single angle. The star wrapped herself up in a bow-adorned ball skirt worn over her lace high-collar jumpsuit (a look from the Alexis Mabille Fall 2018 Haute Couture collection) for the black-tie affair.
As always, her event brought out a number of high-profile guests including Issa Rae, Tiffany Haddish, Trevor Noah, Paris Hilton, Nicky Hilton Rothschild, A$AP Rocky and many more.
“It’s a big deal to have everybody come out and every year, it’s more people and more people call and ask to buy a table or a ticket,” Rihanna tells PEOPLE. “It means a lot and it feels good to have a foundation and a ball like this that is respected and that people want to come back over and over again and donate every single year.”
Rihanna is the founder of the Clara Lionel Foundation, which is in honor of her grandparents, Clara and Lionel Braithwaite. The Clara Lionel Foundation supports and funds global education, health and emergency response programs and also engages in advocacy with the goal of improving the quality of life for young people around the world.
The event was hosted by “the gorgeous” Rae and Childish Gambino had a special performance during the show.
The Hilton sisters, Joan Smalls and A$AP Rocky more friends were on-hand to celebrate and support a good cause.
And one attendee, Haddish, actually purchased a pair of $75,000 (which retails for $112,000) marquis-cut diamond and 18-karat fairmined white gold earrings during the auction, which she immediately wore after receiving them.
The comedian told PEOPLE exclusively about winning the auction, “I feel fantastic, I feel honored and I feel really happy that the money goes to something positive and good. I feel amazing supporting Rihanna.”
“It’s a nice way to give people an excuse to give money to a good cause,” Noah tells PEOPLE. “It’s not Tiffany buying diamond earrings, it’s her saying, ‘I’m going to give the money to this cause,’ and I think everybody benefits and that’s really what the world should be, I think is that people realizing that everybody can win from giving to good causes.”
He also opened up to PEOPLE about his thoughts on Rihanna’s charitable ways.
“It’s inspiring for me because Rihanna’s one of those people who could have very easily lived in a world where they just enjoyed her success and lived the fabulous life but I think what I admire about Rihanna is she’s gone above and beyond the call of duty with the Clara Lionel Foundation,” Noah tells PEOPLE. “She is working in improving the world, she’s working on educating people, she’s teaming up with amazing initiatives like Global Citizens and as somebody who’s just gotten into philanthropy, I’m inspired by the journey and so it’s really a humbling honor to be here, to experience this and to understand how big an idea can get.”
- Reporting by MARY PARK