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My View: Fran Drescher Toasts, Judy Gold Hosts, The Friars Club Roasts Gloria Allred

My View: Fran Drescher Toasts, Judy Gold Hosts, The Friars Club Roasts Gloria Allred

In 1983 Phyllis Diller had to dress up in drag to sneak into a men’s only Sid Caesar’s Friars Roast. Last night women’s champion Friar Gloria Allred resplendent in an attractive pants and gold jacket was escorted through the front door of The Monastery for that time-honored Friar privilege  of being Roasted. Photos only…….. What’s said in the Friars, stays in the Friars.

1988 was the year that many Private Men’s Clubs started admitting women, and Gloria  Allred was at the forefront of that development.  Liza Minnelli was the first woman to become a Friar at the New York Friars Club. 

It is common knowledge that the Friars only Roasts the ones they love and in a statement given to the  Press yesterday the Friars Club noted that: “Gloria Allred has been a distinguished member of the Friars Club for more than 30 years. She was the first female member of our California club, and played a pivotal role in opening the New York club to women in 1988, she has remained a strong advocate for women’s rights in the club and elsewhere.”

Fran Drescher Toasted Gloria and The Friars presented the famed attorney with a check for the Women’s Equal Rights Legal Defense & Education Fund

The Roastmaster was the “politically correct” comedian Judy Gold who first introduced the “silent members” of this, the first all female Friars Roast Dias….  Academy Award Winner Helen Hunt, Comedy Club owner Caroline Hirsch, and Attorney Lisa Bloom Gloria’s daughter.  Judy Gold looked at Lisa and “politely” remarked…”Lisa you look pale, have you been standing in Gloria’s shadow too long”?  Judy also informed the overfilled Frank Sinatra Dining Room that she was perplexed as to why Harvey Weinstein cancelled at the last minute…and so it continued with the Roastwomen (all in pants suits).

 Joanna Cassidy, Robin Tyler, Chanel Ali, Lainie Kazan, Maddy Smith, Lauren Frost, Aby James, and Cat Greenleaf.

Robert DeNiro was not at this Roast but that word he used at the Tony Awards sure was, and Gloria was coaxed into the spirt of things.

The list of Celebrity Friars Roasts is made up of the worlds most esteemed entertainers, sports icons, and businessmen.  Rocky Marciano,Leo Durocher,Sophie Tucker, Milton Berle, Eddie Fisher, Humphrey Bogart, Sammy Davis,Jr. Johnny Carson, Jack Benny, Nat “King” Cole, David Frost, Robert Merrill, Mayor John V. Lindsay, George Steinbrenner, Terry Bradshaw, Donald Trump, Billy Crystal and of course Jerry Lewis just to name a few.  Gloria Allred has now been added to that historic list.  As Judy Gold remarked…..Two things a man doesn’t want to be told,

(the first to to be repeated here)…the 2nd….”Gloria Allred is on Line 1…..”

These Roasts are for members only, but if you promise not to laugh too hard and repeat the jokes to your friends you can join the Friars Club.

(Complete Celeb photos on

Fran Drescher & Gloria Allred

Judy Gold & Gloria Allred

Joanne Cassidy, Lainie Kazan, Fran Drescher

Errol Rapport & Lainie Kazan

Stephen Sorokoff, Gloria Allred, Eda Sorokoff

Judy Gold, Lainie Kazan, Jane Hanson, Eda Sorokoff

Gloria Allred, 1st woman Friar & Jamie deRoy, 8th woman Friar

Judy Gold & Stephen Sorokoff


Stephen studied at the Manhattan School of Music. Besides being a pianist, Stephen’s business career was in the Fashion Industry. He was CEO of a textile manufacturing facility and President of an international textile machinery company. Stephen was on the Board of Directors of the “First All Children’s Theatre” which brought the Stephen Schwartz musical The Trip and Captain Louie to the Kennedy Center in Wash DC. His wife Eda, an interior space designer and classical pianist was on the Board of Barrington Stage Company and is still active at BSC. Stephen’s photographs, videos and articles appear on, and The New York Observer. He is active in the entertainment events at the Friars Club, where he is a member. Stephen is also an Honorary Board Member of The Society For The Preservation of The Great American Songbook. Stephen

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