Stars shower Minelli

New York � The songstress was serenaded and the guest list was star-studded at Liza Minnelli's bridal shower.

Donna Summer, Natalie Cole and Valerie Simpson performed "You Are So Beautiful to Me," said Warren Cowan, publicist for Minnelli's fianc�, producer David Gest, on Thursday. Socialite songwriter Denise Rich was the host of Wednesday's shower at her Fifth Avenue penthouse.

Minnelli, who turned 56 on Tuesday, and Gest, 48, are marrying at the Marble Collegiate Church. The marriage will be Minnelli's fourth and Gest's first.

Michael and Tito Jackson will be the best men at the ceremony, and Whitney Houston will sing "The Greatest Love of All" as Minnelli walks down the aisle in a Bob Mackie gown. The bridesmaids, who will be dressed in black, include Mia Farrow, Gina Lollobrigida and Petula Clark.

Backstreet Boy to wed

Miami � Backstreet Boy A.J. McLean has quietly gotten engaged.

The boy band bad boy proposed to singer Sarah Martin on Dec. 16, spokesman Carlos Vega said.

Vega said no wedding date has been set and offered no further details.

In an interview with VH1 in Miami over the weekend, McLean said he and Martin planned to marry next year.

That would leave Nick Carter and Howie Dorough as the only Backstreet bachelors. Brian Littrell married in 2000, as did Kevin Richardson.

Just last year, the 24-year-old McLean entered rehabilitation for depression and alcohol abuse, forcing the Backstreet Boys to postpone the rest of their U.S. and Canada tour.

The circus is over

Zurich, Switzerland � Princess Stephanie, 37, of Monaco has ended her yearlong relationship with the Swiss national circus director. "Stephanie goes home to Papa," the mass-circulation daily newspaper Blick shouted. She took her three children and two dogs with her, the newspaper said.

Why the split? Lausanne's daily Le Matin said that the director-elephant trainer, Franco Knie, was still married to Claudine, his wife of 14 years � and that the princess never got used to living in a circus trailer.

We should have seen it coming ...

Tallahassee, Fla. � The state of Florida has come up with more evidence in its fraud case against the phone hot line psychic Miss Cleo.

The state attorney general says her birth certificate shows she was born in California (She bills herself as a shaman from Jamaica.) Miss Cleo's TV ads promise insights on love and money, but the Federal Trade Commission says she has made unsolicited calls, billed for services never purchased, and threatened complainers.

Florida authorities say her parents are from Texas and California, and that her real name is Youree Dell Harris.


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