Amas Benefit Event Honors Playwright George C. Wolfe with Rosie Award
Amas Musical Theatre (Donna Trinkoff, Producing Artistic Director), will celebrate the Centennial Year of its late founder Rosetta LeNoire at a Gala evening on Monday, April 4th, featuring a special "Blast from the Past" concert of William Finn's songs from the celebrated Romance in Hard Times, starring Tony-Winner Lillias White and a veteran cast of Broadway professionals. The event takes place at the Baruch Performing Arts Center, East 25th Street between Lexington and 3rd Avenues, at 7pm.
The Amas Benefit Event honors the award-winning director, writer and producer George C. Wolfe with the "Rosie Award", named for Amas's founder. The Rosie Award "is bestowed on those individuals who have demonstrated extraordinary accomplishment and dedication in bringing our world more closely together through the performing arts." Previous honorees include Ossie Davis and Rubie Dee, Geoffrey Holder and Carmen deLavallade, Leslie Uggams, Maurice Hines, Phylicia Rashad, Woodie King, Jr., and Dionne Warwick.
George C. Wolfe's directing credits for the theatre include Angels in America - Millennium Approaches and Perestroika, Bring In ‘Da Noise, Bring in ‘Da Funk, Jelly's Last Jam. The Wild Party, Caroline or Change, and A Free Man of Color, among others. He directed the film "Nights in "Rodanthe" and "Lackawanna Blues" for HBO. He is the writer of the award-winning play The Colored Museum and created Harlem Song for the Apollo Theatre. Awards include two Tony Awards, four Obie Awards, Actors Equity Paul Robeson Award, the NAACP Lifetime Achievement Award, and the Lambda Liberty Award, among many others. From 1993-2005 he was the Producer of The Public Theatre/New York Shakespeare Festival and serves on the President's Committee for the Arts and The Humanities.
ROMANCE IN HARD TIMES received its first and only production at The Public Theatre in 1989-90. It was never recorded or published. The storied show's original cast includes several who will appear in the Amas concert, including Lillias White (Fela, The Life, etc.), Victor Trent Cook (Smokey Joe's Café Three Mo' Tenors), Alix Korey (All Shook Up, Chicago, etc.), Tim Jerome (Grand Hotel, Man of La Mancha, etc.), and Michael Mandell (Elf - The Musical). Other cast members include Bernard J. Calloway (Memphis), Carmen Ruby Floyd (Lion King, Little Ham at Amas), Beth Glover (Nat'l. tours All Shook Up, Dirty Blond, etc.), Robert Fowler (The Producers, Beauty and the Beast, etc.), and Destan Owens (Rent, Chicago, etc.).
William Finn is well known for his trilogy of short musical shows IN TROUSERS, MARCH OF THE FALSETTOS and FALSETTOLAND. FALSETTOS, the combination of MARCH OF THE FALSETTOS and FALSETTOLAND, won Tony Awards for Best Score and Best Book, the latter shared with James Lapine. Finn and Lapine's other collaborations include Little Miss Sunshine, the Tony Award-winning The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee and A New Brain, which won the Outer Critics Circle Award for Outstanding Off-Broadway Musical.
Direction is by Amas Artistic Associate Michael Bush (Stormy Weather, Cactus Flower), with music direction by Matt Castle (Musical of Musicals). Stage and screen star Vanessa Williams serves as Honorary Benefit Chair.
There will also be special performances by members of the Rosetta LeNoire Musical Theatre Academy and the Maria Torres Emerging Artists Ensemble. The evening's performance will conclude with the presentation of the seventh annual Rosetta LeNoire Scholarship, which is given to a deserving college-bound student attending the Amas Academy.
The Amas Benefit is an annual event held to raise funds in support of Amas Musical Theatre's ongoing theatre and arts education programs.
Amas Musical Theatre Gala Benefit Event, Honorary Committee Chair Vanessa Williams, Celebrating the Centennial Year of Founder Rosetta LeNoire, Honoring George C. Wolfe with "Blast From The Past" Concert Presentation of Songs from ROMANCE IN HARD TIMES by William Finn, MONDAY, April 4, 2011.
Baruch Performing Arts Center
East 25th Street between Lexington and 3rd Avenues
Performance begins at 7 PM followed by Champagne and Dessert Reception, Silent Auction and Raffle.
Ticket prices are $125 (show only), $200 and $500.
For additional information and reservations visit www.amasmusical.org or call (212) 563-2565.
Photo Credit: Walter McBride/WM Photos