• 24-hour party with Isabel Pantoja in Monaco: this was her big day at the Rose Ball

Night falls in Monte Carlo. The Rose Ball is now over. From the 17th floor of the Tour building, the couple formed by Thomas Schmieder (84) and Manel Dalgó (56) talk with LOC to reveal the secrets of the great party of the Principality. And, above all, to describe who is this couple who invited Isabel Pantoja. Thomas is a German businessman who made his fortune in entertainment. With a keen eye he knew that in the middle of the Cold War joy could be distributed in a Berlin divided by the wall of shame. In the early 60s he became the owner of the cabaret Chez Nous and with the tours made by Germany, Switzerland and Austria he earned quite a few millions.

That paradise of the forbidden brought together the best of the olympiens of the time. Amanda Lear starred in her first striptis in 1962 when she was still Peki d'Oslo; Marlene Dietrich bewitched with her beauty from her little table; the Kessler twins (86) abducted with their dances; Liberace, Coccinelle and Shirley Bassey (86) entertained some nights... Chez Nous was the sanctuary from 1958 to 2008 for a multitude of heterosexuals, transsexuals, homosexuals, transformistas and lesbians who longed to combine the word freedom and, why not, in debauchery. "In Spain we have been the pintao faggot, while in Germany they treated you as an actor and artist." Who speaks is Manel, the Catalan transformist who sold ice cream from Jijonenca with 16 years and made substitutions as a caretaker at the Bellvitge Hospital where he was bullied became a star in the German capital after landing in 1991.

If that's who he is, he owes it to his close friend Fidel Rodríguez Funny Boy, who along with Ricky Anderson and Louis Feder led the Opale trio with which they obtained successes in Switzerland and the Côte d'Azur. Louis left and Fidel replaced him with Manel. In Berlin time stood still.

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The mysterious millionaire who has invited Isabel Pantoja to the Ball of the Rose


The mysterious millionaire who has invited Isabel Pantoja to the Ball of the Rose

In the Chez Nous Manel caused a sensation. The audience used to ask, "Is the Spaniard performing tonight?" The room was packed. It emanated something special and caught Thomas' attention. In the mind of the owner his professional side was clear but ... and his heart? The Teuton had fallen in love, but Manel was not for the work because he liked brunettes "with jabugo legs". However, "for about a year and something was pick and shovel, pick and shovel behind me, but blondes with blue eyes wouldn't throw me. Well, take. For resisting, life imprisonment," he admits with a beating jaw. The last nine years of Chez Nous served as artistic director.

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As soon as that stage was closed in 2008 they moved permanently to Monaco. She assures that "Estefanía is very funny and human. Sometimes we have coincided buying at the Carrefour and if he catches me off guard he crashes his car with mine." About Carolina he thinks that "she is more stretched, posh and keeps her distance". She inherited her mother's duties as president of the Grace Kelly Foundation, which goes to the proceeds from the Rose Ball, which this year was dedicated to Bollywood.

With a hint of voice, Thomas assures that "for more than forty years I have had a reserved table at the Sporting Club, where we usually attend the most outstanding events. Together with my husband we invite the people we love." Hence, they invited the tonadillera. The covered cost 850 euros. Manel and Fidel, entrepreneur of the Drag show hall at Yumbo Center Maspalomas (Gran Canaria), covered these expenses. The rest, Hello!.

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Manel explains that his tour manager "contacted him because they are preparing an album of duets on the occasion of Isabel's 50th anniversary in music. He told me that they would like Shirley to participate. I told him, I played the song Esta es mi vida that the Pantoja covered and loved it." Shirley and Manel are like brothers. After that talk it occurred to him that the Ball of the Rose would be a good time to get to know each other.

"They greeted each other affectionately in the hall of the building where Shirley lives and sat in the back of the car where they talked about banal things," Manel says. After the tombola and dinner they left their skin on the dance floor. "Isabel and I danced a sevillana with modern music, the foul was lifted and next to Shirley did the same. He danced to Augustine!"

Carolina and Alberto de Monaco on their arrival at the Sporting Club de Monte Carlo.GTRES

At one point in the evening, Manel approached Prince Albert III of Monaco: "Monsignor, Mrs. Shirley Bassey would like to greet you and gave you a hug. Then I introduced Isabel Pantoja as a star in Spain and Latin America, she took her by the waist and they photographed themselves." However, the long-awaited dream of the interpreter of Sailor of lights to meet Princess Carolina was shattered since she was "surrounded by seguratas and you can not approach. When he got up from his table he passed by us, we said 'good evening, your highness, a very nice party' and he waved."

Throughout the night there was no talk of work or duets. But between Isabel and Shirley there was a very good feeling. This is how Manel specifies it: "The next day I had a coffee with her and she told me that it had been the funniest night she had lived at the Ball. She is always one of the first to leave and that night she wanted to stay until the end." Will there be a duet?

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