updated 08/15/1983 AT 01:00 AM EDT

originally published 08/15/1983 AT 01:00 AM EDT

Bang-up Job
Unlike other performers who protest apartheid in South Africa by refusing to perform there, rocking Rod Stewart bopped in where others choose not to tread. Too bad about what happened just before his arrival last month. The prongs of a forklift truck went straight through a packing case holding his $155,000 custom-made piano. Ouch.

Speaking in Tongues
At Manhattan's Michel Thomas Language Center, where for a mere $3,500 they teach you to parler a foreign language in only 10 days, all those movie stars who don't have much time are lining up for a quickie education. Karen Allen just studied French so she can talk to natives while shooting an upcoming flick in France. Lauren Hutton shelled out $700 to bone up on her German accent for a new film with Tom Selleck. And Warren Beatty, who had already taken crash courses in German and French, recently rounded out his education by learning Spanish. Does this mean the rest of us will need a crash course in reading subtitles?

Music for Middle-Agers
It seems there's a frustrated rock'n'roller in more than one elderly movie star. Not long ago, horror film veteran Vincent Price, 72, recited a rap lyric on Michael Jackson's monster hit album Thriller. And Manowar, a macho heavy metal quartet that signed their latest record contract in their own blood, has an equally esteemed patron. The well-known model of urbanity, Orson Welles, 68, thinks these musical barbarians, who style their clothes and songs after those in vogue during the Dark Ages, deserve a listen. Welles narrated a song on last year's debut album, Battle Hymns, and can be heard again on a soon-to-be released single, Defender. Orson won't comment on his contribution, but then again one can't help but wonder if he's miffed. His rather weighty name appears on the premier album in nearly microscopic print. Those dang barbarians.

Post-Wedding Plans
Susan Anspach, who starred in Five Easy Pieces and Blume in Love, didn't always follow the rule of polite society. She bore two children out of wedlock and lived two years with her current husband, rock musician Sherwood Ball, before marrying him three months ago. Now, after their impromptu civil ceremony, Susan is exhibiting a latent sense of propriety. Asked when she planned to hold a wedding reception, Susan remarked, "I think Emily Post says you've got a year to hold one and still be proper."


•Joan Rivers wasn't the only one thrilled to hear that she had clinched a deal for a 10-week gig at Caesars Palace in Las Vegas. Said she of her husband's reaction, "Edgar has always loved the mirrors over the beds. I hope they put him in with somebody affectionate."

• After separating from his wife, Elizabeth, last year, Billy Joel's life changed dramatically. "Suddenly," admits Billy, "there were a lot of women around. I felt like I'd just come out of a cocoon. I was in love with 15 of them at once." That's funny. They only take his picture when he's with Christie Brinkley.

•Talk about raking in the profits. Songwriter Paul (You're Having My Baby) Anka still collects a $200 residual check every time you hear his 1962 composition, the Tonight Show theme. Says a modest—and wealthy—Anka, "I think it's a good little song. I just wish I could have written some words for it."

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