Barefoot Theatre Company and SVA Film Department Presents the 15th Anniversary Gala & Awards Ceremony, 6/23

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Barefoot Theatre Company and SVA Film Department Presents the 15th Anniversary Gala & Awards Ceremony, 6/23

Barefoot Theatre Company and the SVA Film Department (Reeves Lehmann, Chair) presents the 15th Anniversary star-studded Barefoot Gala & Awards Ceremony produced by Artistic Director Francisco Solorzano (Floating Sunflowers, Love Simple, Sins of the Mother), Producing Director Christopher Whalen (Sins of the Mother, PS. I Love You), Associate Producing Director Danelle Eliav (Emoticon; Carnival Kids) and company members Raye Levine (Pirate, Other Histories) and Daniella Rabbani (Nina at Primary Stages).

Featuring new short plays by award-winning playwright and Academy Award Nominee Jose Rivera (Motorcycle Diaries,Adoration of the Old Woman), Kristina Poe (Love Sick), Adam Szymkowicz (Food for Fish), Mel Nieves (Tours of Duty),Jennifer Skura (Sweet Citrus) with brand new poem by Craig muMs Grant (Oz) and musical guests Oriane and Daniella Rabbani. Directors include Barefoot co-founder Michael LoPorto (New Shorts), Shira-Lee Shalit (Open Air) and prominent Casting Director Paul Schnee. The cast will feature Barefoot company members along with celebrity guests - names soon to be announced.

The Gala will also present the inaugural Vassallo Awards dedicated to the memory of Actor/Producer Ed Vassallo, who inspired many with his talent and generosity. Barefoot will honor Stella Adler Studio of Acting (New York) with the Outstanding Achievement in Educational Outreach Award, Israel Horovitz (Indian Wants the Bronx) with the Outstanding Achievement in Mentorship Award and Lynn Cohen (Munich, Hunger Games, Sex And The City) with the Outstanding Achievement in the Arts Award for her dedication to theater, film and television.

In 1999, Barefoot Theatre Company was founded by a multicultural group of artists determined to produce vital, thought-provoking works, both new and existing. Barefoot Theatre Company has developed a loyal audience over the past 15 years, producing over 75 productions, workshops and readings in New York and Los Angeles. Recent productions Off-Broadway include the premieres of Teeth of the Sons, a stage adaptation of the film Dog Day Afternoon, NYC Revival of Joe Pintauro's Raft of the Medusa, the workshop of Israel Horovitz's Gloucester Blue, as well as the 70/70 Horovitz Project, a yearlong worldwide festival that feature 70 of Horovitz's plays on the occasion of his 70th birthday.

Barefoot Theatre's sister film company, Barefoot Studio Pictures just premiered the award winning short film, Floating Sunflowers, which is currently playing the festival circuit and stars Anna Chlumsky (Veep, My Girl) and Lynn Cohen (Munic; Hunger Games 2; Sex and the City). Several other film projects are in the works, including The Girl with the Jacket,a short written and directed by company member Caitlin FitzGerald (Masters Of Sex) which is in post-production.

Sponsors include Brooklyn Brewery, Stellarhead Digital Storytelling, Pravda, Bone/Levine Architects and SITU Studio.

The Barefoot Gala will be held on Monday June 23rd at 8 pm at the SVA Beatrice Theater (333 West 23rd Street at 8th Avenue). Tickets range from $25 General Admission, $75 Silver Pass (2 Tickets), $250 Gold Pass (4 Tickets), $500 Platinum (6 Tickets) to $1000 Diamond (8 Tickets) VIP Passes. Tickets are available at http://www.brownpapertickets.com/event/720710 or by calling Brown Paper Tickets at 1-800-838-3006.

Tax-deductible donations may also be made via the company's website:
http://barefoottheatrecompany.org/donate.php.

ABOUT THE HONOREES
Established in 1949 by the great Stella Adler, the Stella Adler Studio of Acting was founded upon Stella's belief in the supreme seriousness of her art, and has, for the last five decades, enriched every part of the American theatre and motion picture arts. Stella's philosophies kept many well-known members of the theatre coming back and the school has since trained many of the brilliant actors of our time, including Marlon Brando, Robert DeNiro, Elaine Stritch, Benicio del Toro and Salma Hayek. The Studio currently trains over 500 actors per year and also presents world class lectures, poetry readings, jazz, classical music, theater, and dance theater events. For the past 15 years, Artistic Director and President of Stella Adler Studio, Tom Oppenheim, has continued his grandmother's tradition and has built upon it, adding components that emphasize social outreach and the potential for theatre to influence society. Tom founded The Stella Adler Outreach Division, which aims to empower young people through craft. Since 2004, Adler Outreach has provided free actor training to over 5,000 low income New York City public school students and others.

Playwright-screenwriter-director Israel Horovitz's 70+ plays have been translated and performed in as many as 30 languages, worldwide. His stage-plays have introduced such actors as Al Pacino, John Cazale, Jill Clayburgh, Marsha Mason, Gerard Depardieu, and many others. Best- known plays include Line (in its 40th year, off-Broadway), The Indian Wants The Bronx, Rats,The Wakefield Plays, The Widow's Blind Date, Park Your Car in Harvard Yard, North Shore Fish, My Old Lady, Sins of the Mother. Screenplays include Author! Author!, The Strawberry Statement (Prix du Jury, Cannes Film Festival), Sunshine (European Academy Award - Best Screenplay), New York, I Love You, James Dean (which introduced James Franco), and 3 Weeks After Paradise (which he wrote, directed and starred in). Horovitz recently wrote and directed his first feature film (at age 74) based upon his stage-play My Old Lady, starring Maggie Smith, Kevin Kline and Kristin Scott-Thomas. He has written and published one novel Cappella and one novella Nobody Love Me. Awards include OBIE (twice), Prix Italia, Sony Radio Academy Award, writers Guild of Canada Best Screenwriter Award, Christopher Award, Drama Desk Award, Award in Literature of the American Academy of Arts and Letters, Lifetime Achievement Award from B'nai B'rith, Boston Public Library's Literary Lights Award, Massachusetts Governor's Award, and many others. Horovitz was recently decorated as Commandeur dans l'Ordre des Arts et des Lettres, France's highest honor awarded to foreign artists. He is Founding Artistic Director of Gloucester Stage, and active Artistic Director of the New York Playwrights Lab, and is co-artistic director of Compagnia Horovitz-Paciotto in Italy. NYC's Barefoot Theatre celebrated Horovitz's 70th birthday by organizing The 70/70 Horovitz Project, a year-long event with 70 Horovitz plays having had readings and/or productions by theatres around the globe. Horovitz has written poetry throughout his lifetime. Heaven and Other Poems is the first collection of his poetry he has authorized for publication.

Lynn Cohen is an esteemed actress in theatre and film. Her roles have ranged from Golda Meir in Steven Spielberg's Munich and Maman in Louis Malle's Vanya on 42nd Street to the nanny Magda in Sex in the City (both the two movies and the TV series). Most recently Ms. Cohen starred in Hunger Games: Catching Fire as Madge opposite Jennifer Lawrence. Included among her many other movie and TV credits are Woody Allen's Manhattan Murder Mystery and Deconstructing Harry; Eagle Eye; Invincible; The Extra Man; Everybody's Fine; Hello Lonesome; Law and Order; Nurse Jackie, Damages, and Bored to Death. On the New York stage, she has appeared in such plays as Tina Howe's Chasing Manet(with Jane Alexander), Hamlet (with Kevin Kline), Macbeth (with Liev Schreiber), Orpheus Descending (with Vanessa Redgrave), and Israel Horovitz's New Shorts with Barefoot Theatre Company. Recent productions include Three Sisters in the new Sarah Ruhl translation directed by John Doyle and Beckett's Happy Days. Awards include a Fox Fellowship; a Richard Seff Award from Actors Equity Association: a Screen Actors Guild ensemble award (for Sex and the City), and a Bowden Award from New Dramatists. Barefoot Theatre Company Ensemble Member since 2007.

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