Thursday, July 7, 2016

Hot Off the Press—Gala Entertainment Update

Tracy Kirwan and Sarah McElroy
SCR Associate Artistic Director John Glore and Gala Executive Chair Sally J. Anderson
Audrey Greenfield and Barbara Cline
Cuisine, Decor & Entertainment and Hospitality Committee member Jane Taylor shows off a dinner napkin.
There’ll be music galore during SCR’s “Stagestruck!” Gala at The Westin South Coast Plaza on Sept. 10. Here’s the scoop from the Gala Committee’s June luncheon meeting.
  • A lively ensemble … to provide the beat for the Galleria reception.
  • A big band … to entice guests into the ballroom.
  • A hip DJ … to select dinner tracks
Later, the band will be back—for dancing the evening away. And for those who linger into the wee hours, the DJ won’t leave until the last note has sounded.

Musical names are still under wraps, but the Gala Committee is ready to announce the big entertainment news—SCR’s “Stagestruck!” Gala headliner will be Nicole Parker, “MADtv” and Wicked star (and SCR Theatre Conservatory grad).

She’ll sing, of course, do a little standup, as is her wont, and reminisce about the years at South Coast Repertory, where she got her start as a member of the Young Conservatory Players.

“I believe my entire childhood was shaped by SCR,” Parker says, “starting with classes when I was seven years old until my last show at age 12. Those were truly formative years.” And they are years filled with fascinating memories that Parker will share when she headlines the SCR Gala.

Meanwhile, SCR Associate Artistic Director John Glore joined the Gala luncheon to fill everyone in on Nicole’s career and share some memories of his own. They include the first time he saw her in rehearsal for Wind of a Thousand Tales—Folk Tales From Far-Away Places, which Glore wrote for the Young Conservatory’s 10th anniversary.

“I had limited expectations for a nine-year-old actress, especially one who hadn’t even completed SCR’s Young Conservatory training, so I was astonished when Nicole took on the lead role in my play," Glore relates. "She was like this pint-sized professional, entirely natural on-stage while also projecting a huge personality and heart in the role. What a gift she was to me in my first venture as a playwright, and again in the follow-up a year later. I certainly wasn’t surprised when she went on to stardom on television and on Broadway.”

Learn all about Parker here.

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