Pret-a-Reporter

This Is How John Legend Likes to Throw His Parties

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John Legend at the Stella Artois' "Host Beautifull" soiree on May 18.

The R&B crooner shares his party-planning process and the best dish Chrissy Teigen has made so far.

John Legend has been a busy dude lately. The Grammy Award-winning crooner has gone from walking the red carpet at the Met Gala and Cannes to performing at the Rock in Rio Festival and Sunday's Billboard Music Awards (with a trip in between to Bali, no less). Not long after his performance with Meghan Trainor during the BBMAs, Legend was back on stage, serenading a cozy crowd at Stella Artois' outdoor event at the famous Golden Ranch Park on Monday.

With the evening's theme dedicated to inspiring guests to "Host Beautifully" for soirees held this summer (and beyond), Legend tells Pret-a-Reporter that when it comes to throwing a party, he usually starts with the guest list.

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"We usually start thinking about who we'd like to invite — that's always important, the right kind of people," says the Oscar winner, who notes that location is key. "It depends on where we are, because my friends in L.A. are more entertainment-based; my friends in New York are usually people I've met in college who are working in finance or consulting. We try to have an interesting mix of people wherever we are."

While Legend usually handles the music ("I usually make a playlist for every party"), wife Chrissy Teigen is "more in charge of that [good food]." Given his supermodel spouse's well-documented (on social media) love affair with cooking, Legend shares that one of the her best dishes includes "this buffalo chicken spinach artichoke dip. It's pretty amazing."

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During Legend's performance of his hit singles, including "Save Room," "All of Me," and "Ordinary People," the crowd enjoyed a menu curated by chef Aliya LeeKong that involved a farmers market salad, shrimp and grits, the choice of a pork belly or a chicken dish, a variety of mini desserts, and of course, specially-designed Stella Artois chalices. Set against a magical rustic setting (many guests were overheard describing the atmosphere as looking like a wedding), the evening was completed with tethered hot air balloon rides against nature's green backdrop.

So what's next on Legend's hectic schedule? He's teaming up with Axe, Billy Reid and Esquire fashion director Nick Sullivan to start a fashion mentorship program. "We reach out to aspiring designers and give them a chance to show their stuff during New York Fashion Week this fall," explains the 36-year-old performer of his latest partnership. "It's all about helping young artists get the opportunity to be seen and heard. I needed that as a young artist so I think it's cool for us to be able to do that for them, too."

So, not only does Legend know how to host beautifully, he leads life beautifully, too. Swoon.

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