Archived entries for benefit

Carol Wins! (

Carol CookCarole Cook performs at the 31st Annual S.T.A.G.E. Aids Benefit (Photo: Chris Kane)

Carole Wins!

By Ken Werther

It all began on a Monday night in October 1984, and I was there. The newly formed Southland Theatre Artists Goodwill Event (S.T.A.G.E.) presented An Evening of Leonard Bernstein at the historic Variety Arts Theatre in downtown LA. The admission price — a $10 donation or groceries for the fledgling food bank. A previously unknown disease had reared its ugly head. AIDS was unknown. Mysterious. Deadly. Something had to be done.

Now the longest-running annual HIV/AIDS fundraiser in the world, S.T.A.G.E. celebrates its 31st birthday on May 9 with To Broadway, From Hollywood With Love at the Saban Theatre in Beverly Hills. Focusing on songs from Broadway shows that began as Hollywood feature films, the evening will include a costume cavalcade showcasing original wardrobe from classic Broadway productions.

Through the years, the best of the best in musical composers and lyricists have been honored and a veritable who’s who of musical performers have participated. Directed by David Galligan for the 31st year in a row and with musical direction by Brad Ellis, the evening will feature performances by a veritable who’s who of musical performers, all donating their time and talents. The inimitable Carole Cook will perform for the 31st year. I have attended 30 out of 31 shows  — Carole has only beaten me by one!

S.T.A.G.E is happening on May 9 at the Saban Theatre in Beverly Hills. To purchase tickets and reserve seats, click here.

Press Release — All Star Cast Will Perform ‘The Vagina Monologues’ May 16-17-18 to Benefit V-Day &

All-Star Cast Will Perform
The Vagina Monologues
to Benefit V-Day and

Popular LATalkRadio Host Sheena Metal
Directs the Eve Ensler Play
at the Atwater Village Theatre Speakeasy

3 Performances Only, May 16-17-18

VDay LOGO 2014More than 50 film and television stars will perform Eve Ensler’s The Vagina Monologues in an intimate theatrical setting for three performances only, May 16, 17, and 18 at 8pm, at the Atwater Village Theatre in Los Angeles. Produced and directed by Sheena Metal for Ensemble Studio Theatre Los Angeles, all proceeds will benefit V-Day, A Global Movement to End Violence Against Women and Girls, and, a national pro-child, anti-crime association committed to building a powerful, nonpartisan force for the protection of children from abuse, exploitation and neglect.

“It is exciting to work with so many great actresses, all of whom are graciously donating their time and talents,” said Metal, whose popular LATalkRadio show, The Sheena Metal Experience (M-F, 5-7pm) is only one of four programs she hosts on LATR each week. “I salute every artist, onstage and off, that is contributing to this special presentation of The Vagina Monologues.”

Among the long list of luminous actresses who will perform in the three benefit performances are (in alphabetical order) Alison Arngrim, Yvette Cason, Daisy Eagan, Ilene Graff, Sally Kirkland, Ann Noble, Jenny O’Hara, Susan Olsen, Lizzie Peet, Suzanne Westenhoefer, and Kim Yarbrough. A complete cast list is available at

To date, the V-Day movement, founded by playwright/actress Eve Ensler, has raised over $75 million and educated millions about the issue of violence against women and the efforts to end it. In 2006, the V-Day movement was named one of Marie Claire Magazine’s Top Ten Charities, and in 2010, over 5400 V-Day benefit events took place produced by volunteer activists in the U.S. and around the world, educating millions of people about the reality of violence against women and girls. In 12 years, the V-Day movement has reached over 300 million people.

These special performances of The Vagina Monologues are Friday, Saturday, and Sunday May 16, 17, and 18, at 8pm. Tickets are $25, and may be purchased online at The Atwater Village Theatre Speakeasy is located at 3269 Casitas Avenue, in Los Angeles.

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Press Release: Vibrant Voice Awards Benefit Event Raises $40,000 for Celebration Theatre

Celebration Theatre’s
Featuring Betty White
And Her Hot in Cleveland Co-Stars
Valerie Bertinelli, Jane Leeves, and Wendie Malick
Reading a Classic Episode of The Golden Girls

Raised $40,000
for the non-profit theatre, now in its 31st year

2014 Vibrant Voice Awards
were presented to
Wendie Malick and Robert Forster

With Special Guests
Sean Hayes, Tracie Thoms, Dan Lauria, Tim Daly,
Max Greenfield, Millicent Martin,
and the legendary Mary Wilson
(of the original Supremes)

On Saturday, April 26 on Sound Stage 19 at CBS Studio Center in Studio City, CA, Celebration Theatre’s Vibrant Voice Awards benefit event raised $40,000 for the non-profit theatre, now in its 31st year. The evening featured original ‘Golden Girl‘ Betty White along with her Hot in Cleveland co-stars Valerie Bertinelli, Jane Leeves, and Wendie Malick reading an episode of The Golden Girls (“Blanche and the Younger Man”). The 2014 Vibrant Voice Awards were presented to Wendie Malick and Robert Forster, and there were special appearances by Sean Hayes, Tracie Thoms, Dan Lauria, Tim Daly, Max Greenfield, Millicent Martin, and Mary Wilson (of the original Supremes). The evening was hosted by Michael Burger.

The Vibrant Voice Award is presented annually in recognition of long-term support of Celebration Theatre as well as spreading the word about the work and mission of Celebration. Past recipients of the award are Leslie Jordan and Sharon Lawrence.

Founded in 1982, Celebration Theatre is a community of artists dedicated to presenting innovative, provocative and relevant work that examines the gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender and queer experience. It provides a supportive forum for professional and emerging writers, directors, designers and performers, giving voice to the full experience of gay culture. The theatre endeavors to challenge society’s perception of the community and give a vibrant voice to its evolving identity.

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