La Jolla Playhouse Continues Cabaret Series with STEPPIN' OUT WITH BEN VEREEN, Now thru 3/31
La Jolla Playhouse announces a special engagement of Steppin' Out with Ben Vereen as part of its cabaret series, running tonight, March 29, 2013 at 8:00 pm, Saturday, March 30 at 2:00 pm and 8:00 pm and Sunday, March 31 at 2:00 pm. The four performances will take place in The Playhouse's specially-designed performance space in the Sheila and Hughes Potiker Theatre, created by The Playhouse's scene shop artisans for the theatre's 2011, 2012 and 2013 Galas.
Steppin' Out with Ben Vereen has been dazzling audiences around the world. The show highlights Mr. Vereen's unique artistry, combining a tribute to Broadway, Frank Sinatra and a very special tribute to Sammy Davis Jr. Featuring hit songs such as "Defying Gravity," "Mr. Bojangles" and "Life is Just a Bowl of Cherries," Steppin' Out with Ben Vereen is a contemporary yet timeless journey. The New York Times dubbed him "an old-school song and dance man who never lets up. He wins you over with his sheer energy, good will and showbiz know-how."
"If you've had the good fortune to see Ben Vereen on stage - whether in Pippin, Jesus Christ Superstar, in concert or elsewhere - you know what an electrifying performer he is," said Playhouse Artistic Director Christopher Ashley. "Steppin' Out with Ben Vereen offers San Diegans the opportunity to experience this one-of-a-kind entertainer in a uniquely personal way, as he takes the stage in our specially-designed cabaret setting."
The 2013 cabaret series will also feature the previously-announced engagement of Chicago's legendary sketch comedy theatre, The Second City's Laughing Matters Tour running March 20 - 23, 2013. Tickets for Steppin' Out with Ben Vereen and The Second City are currently only available in a subscription package. Seating map for the cabaret and additional ticketing details are available by calling (858) 550-1010 or online at www.LaJollaPlayhouse.org.
The nationally-acclaimed, Tony Award-winning La Jolla Playhouse is known for its tradition of creating the most exciting and adventurous new work in regional theatre. The Playhouse was founded in 1947 by Gregory Peck, Dorothy McGuire and Mel Ferrer, and is considered one of the most well-respected not-for-profit theatres in the country. Numerous Playhouse productions have moved to Broadway, including the currently running hits Jersey Boys, Peter and the Starcatcher and Chaplin: The Musical, as well as Memphis, Big River, The Who's Tommy, How to Succeed in Business Without Really Trying, A Walk in the Woods, Billy Crystal's 700 Sundays, the Pulitzer Prize-winning I Am My Own Wife, Thoroughly Modern Millie, The Farnsworth Invention, 33 Variations and Bonnie & Clyde. Located on the UC San Diego campus, La Jolla Playhouse is made up of three primary performance spaces: the Mandell Weiss Theatre, the Mandell Weiss Forum Theatre and the Joan and Irwin Jacobs Center for La Jolla Playhouse, a state-of-the-Art Theatre complex which features the Sheila and Hughes Potiker Theatre. La Jolla Playhouse is led by Artistic Director Christopher Ashley and Managing Director Michael S. Rosenberg.
Ben Vereen is currently touring his one man show, Steppin' Out with Ben Vereen, dazzling audiences throughout the United States, Europe, Australia and Abu Dhabi. Ben's show is a unique blend of artistry, combining a tribute to Broadway, Frank Sinatra, and a very special tribute to Sammy Davis Jr. Featuring hit songs such as "Defying Gravity," "Mr. Bojangles," "My Way" and "Life is Just a Bowl of Cherries," Steppin' Out with Ben Vereen is a contemporary and timeless journey. Ben headlines performing arts centers and symphonies, with either a quartet or as many as 60 musicians accompanying him. Each performance is filled with song and dance, stories of his life, a great deal of humor and always, multiple standing ovations.
A Tony Award winner for his renowned performance in Bob Fosse's Pippin, Ben has gone on to solidify his place among Broadway royalty, with starring roles in such Broadway productions as Wicked, Fosse, Chicago, Jesus Christ Superstar, Hair, Jelly's Last Jam, Grind, A Christmas Carol and I'm Not Rappaport. He starred in the new play Fetch Clay, Make Man, directed by Jersey Boys director Des McAnuff.
A legend of the stage and screen, Ben is best known for his iconic role as Chicken George in the groundbreaking television miniseries Roots. Ben guest starred on the television shows How I Met Your Mother, Grey's Anatomy (Prism Award), Tyler Perry's House of Payne, Law & Order: Criminal Intent, and co-starred in the Emmy-nominated made-for-TV-movie, An Accidental Friendship, for which he earned a NAACP nomination. Ben is also a well known speaker, lecturing across the country on topics as diverse as Overcoming Adversity, African-American History, Physical and Occupational Therapy and Ben's Broadway Lecture with Song. In addition, Ben continues to be the spokesman for the leading pharmaceutical company Sanofi U.S., spearheading a proactive and preventive campaign for those living with diabetes. Ben's new CD Steppin' Out Live with Ben Vereen is available on iTunes, Amazon.com, and wherever and whenever Ben is performing his concerts and personal appearances.
On January 30th, 2012, Ben was inducted in to The Theatre Hall of Fame. Ben performed for 100,000 people at the Washington Monument on July 4th, 2012 and on August 11, Ben was inducted into the Dance Hall of Fame. In March of 2013, Ben will receive his honorary degree from the LaGuardia High School of Performing Arts.