(MADISON, NJ) — The Shakespeare Theatre of New Jersey will hold its renowned fundraiser gala and cabaret performance on March 26 beginning at 6:30 p.m. at the Hilton Short Hills in Short Hills, New Jersey. In addition to kicking off the 2011 Season, The Shakespeare Theatre gala will celebrate the 10th Anniversary of the Theatre's acclaimed Outdoor Stage and the partnerships that make this extraordinary event possible each summer. Artistic director Bonnie J. Monte and the Board of Trustees will recognize the contributions of The College of St. Elizabeth, Bank of America, The Geraldine R. Dodge Foundation, and Air Group in a special tribute. The annual gala is the Theatre's largest fundraiser of the year. For more information or to purchase tickets, call 973-408-3761 or visit www.ShakespeareNJ.org.
In 2002, the Geraldine R. Dodge Foundation awarded The Shakespeare Theatre a prestigious Strategic Partnership Grant to support the institution's artistic and educational programming. With the support of this important award, the Theatre was able to enter into a visionary partnership with the College of St. Elizabeth and launched the Outdoor Stage at the College's beautiful open-air Greek Theatre. Each summer, the Shakespeare Theatre presents a production at the Greek Theatre, which is nestled into the hillside on the bucolic campus of the College. Since 2002, more than 40,000 adults and children have attended this unique venue for such productions as The Grouch, The Taming of the Shrew, A Midsummer Night's Dream, The Complete Works of William Shakespeare (abridged), The Servant of Two Master and many more.
"We are immensely grateful to each of these organizations for their support of The Shakespeare Theatre and especially the Outdoor Stage," said artistic director Bonnie J. Monte. "Partnerships like this one are vital to our continued success and to our mission of presenting the world's great classics for people of all ages and means."
The gala evening begins at 6:30 p.m. with cocktails, delicious passed hors d'oeuvres, scrumptious dishes from carving and sauté stations while Gala attendees mingle with guest artists and performers, and shop the spectacular silent auction that offers scores of unique items including clothing, jewelry, getaways, and sports and theatrical memorabilia. Afterwards, guests will enjoy the Shakespeare Theatre's renowned cabaret performance with music and comedy sketches featuring notable performers from the stage and screen including Broadway's Robert Cuccioli, and star of the New York cabaret scene Baby Jane Dexter.
Included in the silent auction is an exclusive behind-the-scenes tour of the Vanity Fair offices with Vanity Fair contributor and best-selling author Bryan Burrough (Barbarians at the Gate, Public Enemies, The Big Rich) and lunch in the famous Condé Nast cafeteria with Mr. Burrough and a Vanity Fair editor.
Guests can also bid on the opportunity to have a conversation with Charlie Rose over coffee. The winner will also attend a taping of The Charlie Rose Show and will receive a tour of the Bloomberg Studios in New York City.
One lucky bidder will have the exclusive opportunity to appear on stage at The Shakespeare Theatre. For one performance, the winning guest will join the cast in the courthouse gallery during the trial scene of To Kill A Mockingbird which will be presented as part of the Theatre's 2011 Season. Many more exciting items can be viewed prior to the event on the Shakespeare Theatre's website at www.ShakespeareNJ.org.
Gala tickets range from $295 to $1,000 per person and there are numerous sponsorship opportunities available. A portion of each ticket is tax-deductible to the fullest extent provided by law. For more information or reservations, call 973-408-3164 or visit www.ShakespeareNJ.org.
The acclaimed Shakespeare Theatre of New Jersey is an independent, professional theatre company located on the Drew University campus. One of the leading Shakespeare theatres in the nation, serving 100,000 adults and children annually, it is New Jersey's only professional theatre company dedicated solely to Shakespeare's canon and other world classics. Through its distinguished productions and education programs, the company strives to illuminate the universal and lasting relevance of the classics for contemporary audiences.