TheatreWorks Silicon Valley creates good museum and always puts on a good do, so we was gratified to accept an invitation to a company’s annual fundraising celebration during a Sharon Heights Country Club in Menlo Park.
“Around a World in 80 Days” is to be TheatreWorks’ subsequent production, so a gala, hold Nov., 4, was formally themed. We all perceived passports on a approach in and were told to get as many stamps as probable from a several country-themed stations, as any pass with 3 or some-more stamps would beget a $100 concession from Gala Chair Cindi Sears.
Gasping for a solitaire and tonic, we dragged my partner to a bar and, formally refreshed, we ambled by several time zones in no sold order. San Francisco’s wire automobile (ding!) was followed by Egypt’s pyramids (Inshallah) as we mingled with a good and a good.
As we juggled my splash and my notebook, we came on newly-minted TheatreWorks residence member Cabell Chinnis looking clean-cut in white loll fit and hat, display off some Cuban style. we asked him what he had taken divided from his initial few residence meetings. “The finances are in most improved figure than a few years ago,” he told me, “and a board’s one-, three- and five-year formulation are ensuring continued expansion and continuity.”
Naturally, a board’s categorical concentration is on anticipating artistic executive Robert Kelley’s successor. After 50 years and 170 productions those are some large boots to fill, though with TheatreWorks’ repute stretching all a approach to Broadway, there should be copiousness of peaceful possibilities from that to choose.
Passing quickly by a neighbor to a north, represented by a Canadian Mountie, we chanced on a hastily integrate in a form of Michelle and Michael Kwatinetz. Long-time supporters of TheatreWorks, Mike is a first partner of try collateral organisation Azure Capital Partners. Mike and Michelle have low roots in entertainment, their nephew carrying constructed Val Vigoda’s 2017 Off Broadway Best New Musical, “Ernest Shackleton Loves Me.” Mike is also heavily concerned in MegaBots. Heaven assistance us.
Wending a approach to a list in a nation of Ireland, indeed a corner bid with Mexico, we met adult with Gala Committee Chair Cindi Sears, looking attractive and really racial in a Mexican outfit. She told us that by chance, everybody on a Italy list was indeed Irish. I’m astounded nobody was dressed as a pope.
Dinner was a juicy and sundry salad, colorful and juicy with too many mixture to name. The categorical march was a beautiful square of beef alongside easily parched salmon, accompanied as always by poetic J. Lohr wines. Yummy. we sat subsequent to Jan and Pete Hellman, and we had inclusive discussions about Brexit and a state of U.S. politics. They adore a museum — who doesn’t? Opening remarks were done by artistic executive Robert Kelley and handling executive Phil Santora, who sensitive us that it was Italian tradition to lift on eating while someone was talking. So we did.
If we fanciful your luck, guest on a approach in could buy $100 tickets to a Stephen Silver valuables raffle, certainly good value a play with a grand esteem of a $10,000 Stephen Silver Experience, including a $9,000 present certificate followed by cooking during a Michelin-starred Madera restaurant. Second esteem was nothing too unfair possibly — $1,000 in grill present certificates to glorious Bay Area eateries.
Broadway actor Donald Corren was a male in assign of a auction, a time for a 220 fabricated fans of TheatreWorks to puncture low into their pockets and bid high on some fanciful items. These ranged from impossible-to-get residence seats on Broadway for both “Hamilton” and “Anastasia.” and personal meet-and-greet backstage with a stars, to an journey holiday in Kauai or a Pick Your Paradise getaway in Costa Rica or Teluride. If we wanted something a small some-more enduring, we could bid on a personal square of talent including music, lyrics and a loll from longtime TheatreWorks crony and Grammy and Academy Award leader Stephen Schwartz. Now that would be a review starter on a coffee table!
Having been enchanted with Hershey Felder’s one-man uncover about Beethoven, where he narrates, plays a composer, and plays his compositions, an insinuate private celebration for only 24 guest with Felder’s judicious explanation and dictatorial singing and personification as celebration would be tough to resist. It didn’t take prolonged for all 24 seats to be snapped adult during $1,000 each.
In any TheatreWorks celebration there has to be some, well, theater. This year artistic executive Robert Kelley had precipitated a outing Around a World from a prevalent 80 Days to a small 20 minutes, and featured an strange strain by Andrew Lippa (“Big Fish,” “The Addams Family”). Featuring songs from past TheatreWorks productions we trafficked by London (“Sweeney Todd”), Egypt (“The Prince of Egypt”), Japan (“Pacific Overtures”) and a series of other countries.
Toward a finish of a festivities we had a possibility to discuss with Kelley. It was formidable to name a favorite uncover from his 50 years with TheatreWorks, though “Into The Woods” was substantially a closest. He also gave me some discernment into a creation of “The Prince of Egypt.” Usally, he can only means to theatre a limit of 15 performers in any show, though with all a dancing and singing in a dried this one compulsory 26! Luckily, assistance was during palm from Universal Studios, a new owners of a strange film, who chipped in to make adult a numbers.
All that was left of a dusk was to bid on a famous Dessert Dash. Our list done an glorious choice and won a Chocolate Raspberry Cake from Icing on a Cake Bakery, Los Gatos. Wait, or was it a Persian Chocolate Strawberry Cake from Lillian Bakery, Saratoga? Bit of a mist during that indicate we have to admit.
The whole dusk was a smashing experience, expertly orderly by Sears, and lifted some-more than $400,000 to assistance safeguard that TheatreWorks continues to raise a inhabitant reputation, producing a really best peculiarity shows, building new plays and musicals, and bringing humanities preparation to a community.