Press Release - ​2017 Fundraising Gala

South Coast Repertory's 2017 Fundraising Gala Has a Sense of Whimsy​—"Let's Play"—and Purpose

COSTA MESA, Calif. (Aug. 22, 2017)—South Coast Repertory’s 2017 Gala takes on a whimsical and playful theme—“Let’s Play.” The annual fundraiser, which supports the theatre’s onstage artistry and its core outreach and education programs, will be held on Saturday, Sept. 16, at The Westin South Coast Plaza. Tickets and tables are on sale now by calling (714) 708-5518.

Talya Nevo-Hacohen and Bill Schenker chair the 2017 Gala Committee. The husband-and-wife team has long-supported SCR and has sought out every opportunity to go behind-the-scenes and get more involved. Last season, the couple served as Honorary Producers for Aaron Posner’s District Merchants; planning for the Gala started in earnest several months later.

“We wanted this year’s Gala to be distinctly theatrical and about our theatre,” said Nevo-Hacohen, about the Gala’s name choice, Let’s Play. “We coalesced around the notions of fun, whimsy and the unexpected and we know the end result is going to be an evening full of wonder.”

Schenker added, “The creative process in theatre can be hard but, every time there's a breakthrough and ideas gel, there is such joy and optimism.”

Broadway star and SCR Theatre Conservatory alumna Allison Case will headline the Gala with a performance that will mix songs she loves to hear as well as some favorites from shows she has been in. Her credits include Mamma Mia (Broadway), the revival of Hair (Broadway, Shakespeare in the Park, London’s West End) and Matilda (Broadway). Case enrolled in SCR’s Summer Acting Workshop at her father’s suggestion and she promptly fell in love with acting. She progressed through kids, teens and adult classes in the Theatre Conservatory and took the professionally focused Acting Intensive Program before moving to New York.

A new feature for SCR’s Gala this year will be a raffle drawing to help raise much-needed additional funding for the theatre. Among the raffle prizes this year are memorable experiences and fashion including the opportunity to learn the art of Shakespearian acting, followed by an Elizabethan feast; a $1,000 shopping voucher for Chloe’s South Coast Plaza Boutique; and a necklace from David Yurman’s Oceanica Collection. Single raffle tickets are $250 or five tickets for $1,000.

The Gala Committee members include Bette Aitken, Sally Anderson, Julianne Argyros, Kathryn Cenci, Barbara Cline, Sophia Hall Cripe, Paul Gadbut, Maralou Harrington, Sue Hecht, Olivia Johnson, Shannon Kennedy,  Tracy Kirwan, Richele Lowery, Sarah McElroy, Carole Meltzer, Stacey Nicholas, Jeanne Pepper, Susan Shieldkret-Dull  and Jane Taylor.

About the SCR Gala

SCR’s Gala has been the traditional opener of both the social and theatrical seasons in Orange County. It provides the first—and the largest—donation to the theatre’s Annual Fund, in support of the artistry onstage and the educational programs that bring theatre to children and underserved populations in the community. The first white-tie event in Orange County was SCR’s Fourth Step Opening Gala, held in a tent outside of the then-new building in 1978. In the years that followed, the theatre’s Galas has raised more than $11 million to support the works on stage and an array of educational and outreach programs.

A limited number of $1,500 Gala single tickets are available. For table sponsorships, patron-level single ticket sponsorships or complete details about the fundraiser, contact SCR at (714) 708-5518.

2017 Sponsors

Event sponsors for Let’s Play include The Passionate Collector, Tito’s Handmade Vodka, Le Grand Courtâge, E. & J. Gallo Winery, Mangiamo Gelato Caffe, ‘Lette Macarons and Nordstrom. Raffle sponsors include Crème de la Crème, Signature Party Rentals, Chloé and David Yurman.

Complete information about Let’s Play is available at:

ABOUT SOUTH COAST REPERTORY: Tony Award-winning South Coast Repertory, founded in 1964 by David Emmes and Martin Benson, is widely recognized as one of the leading professional theatres in the United States. While its productions represent a balance of classic and modern theatre, SCR is renowned for its extensive new-play development program, which includes the nation’s largest commissioning program for emerging and established writers. One-quarter of SCR’s 525 productions have been world premieres. SCR-developed works have garnered two Pulitzer Prizes and eight Pulitzer nominations, several Obie Awards and scores of major new-play awards. Located in Costa Mesa, Calif., SCR is home to the 507-seat Segerstrom Stage, the 336-seat Julianne Argyros Stage and the 94-seat Nicholas Studio.