Broadway Vet Bebe Neuwirth to Perform in Support of Arena Stage This Spring

Arena Stage at the Mead Center for American Theater will host An Evening with Bebe Neuwirth on Monday, May 1, 2017.

The exclusive benefit features the presentation of the second annual Beth Newburger Schwartz Award to Arena Stage Emeritus Trustee Arlene R. Kogod. The evening, helmed by event chair Susan Haas Bralove and diplomatic chair His Excellency Björn Lyrvall, Ambassador of Sweden, includes a VIP cocktail reception, three-course seated dinner, one-night-only performance and post-show music, wine and dessert reception.

Bebe Neuwirth, a two-time Tony and Emmy Award winner, plays the recurring role of Nadine Tolliver on the hit CBS series Madam Secretary. She was seen on Broadway as Nickie in Sweet Charity and Velma Kelly in Chicago. She later returned to Chicago to play both Roxie Hart and Matron in one of Broadway's longest running musicals to date. She received two Emmy Awards for her role as Dr. Lilith Sternin Crane on television's Cheers, and reprised her role on Frasier. Her cabaret-style performance will weave together stories from her acclaimed career and feature some of her favorite tunes.

Dinner will feature the presentation of the Beth Newburger Schwartz Award to Arlene R. Kogod, in recognition of her unparalleled commitment to and support of the arts throughout Washington, D.C. (Arena Stage's 200-seat theater, the Kogod Cradle, is named after Arlene and her husband Robert). The award was first presented to Arena Stage board chair Newburger Schwartz in 2016 and celebrates female leaders in the community.

"I have had the pleasure of knowing Arlene Kogod for many years, and am delighted to celebrate her special contributions to our community through the Beth Newburger Schwartz Award," says Artistic Director Molly Smith. "Arlene is an inspirational leader among Washington women. She is a staunch supporter of the community and of the arts. I love seeing her name on our building every day I come to work. Arlene sets an example to all of us with her quiet and steady generosity of spirit. She deserves to be feted this way, and how better than with Bebe Neuwirth, a multi-talented and amazing artist. Bebe does it all-singing, dancing, acting-and is a great example of the strength of American women."

"Arlene Kogod exemplifies all that is excellent in a patron of the arts," adds Newburger Schwartz. "Her love of theater, fine art, music and literature is reflected in her personal collections and public contributions. I am honored that she will accept Arena's award that recognizes outstanding women in the Washington community."

All proceeds from the evening support Arena Stage's award-winning artistic and community engagement programs.

The Honorary Committee for An Evening with Bebe Neuwirth includes Ayad Akhtar, Judith N. Batty, Linda A. Baumann, Marc Duber, Congresswoman Suzanne Bonamici, Susan and Steven Bralove, Congressman G. K. Butterfield, Senator Ben Cardin, Senator Thad Cochran, Congressman Gerald E. Connolly, John Edelmann and Jeff Love, Drs. Elliot J. Feldman and Lily Gardner Feldman, Congresswoman Marcia L. Fudge, Ann O. Hamilton, Congressman Alcee L. Hastings, Kay Kapoor, Senator AnGus King, Arlene and Robert Kogod, Senator Patrick Leahy, Congresswoman Gwen Moore, Congresswoman Eleanor Holmes Norton, Congresswoman Chellie Pingree, Congresswoman Lucille Roybal-Allard, Congressman Dutch Ruppersberger, Gene Samburg, Beth Newburger Schwartz, A. Christopher Sega, David and Peggy Shiffrin, Congresswoman Louise M. Slaughter, David Bruce Smith, Senator Chris Van Hollen and Senator Roger F. Wicker.


Monday, May 1, 2017
Arena Stage at the Mead Center for American Theater (1101 Sixth St., SW)
5:30 p.m. VIP cocktail reception
6:30 p.m. Seated dinner and presentation of the Beth Newburger Schwartz Award
8:30 p.m. Cabaret performance by Bebe Neuwirth
Post-show music, wine and dessert reception following the performance

Individual Tickets:
Dinner Ticket - $1,000
Performance Ticket - $500
Young Professional Ticket (35 or under) - $150
For additional event details, visit

For information on individual ticket or table purchases, please contact Maria Corso at 202-600-4025 or email For information on corporate sponsorship packages, contact Char Manlove-Laws at 202-600-4030 or email

An Evening with Bebe Neuwirth is sponsored in part by AT&T, Arent Fox, Judith N. Batty, The Bernstein Companies, Susan and Steven Bralove, John Edelmann and Jeff Love, Drs. Elliot J. Feldman and Lily Gardner Feldman, Ann O. Hamilton, Gene Samburg , Beth Newburger Schwartz, David and Peggy Shiffrin, David Bruce Smith and Venable.

Bebe Neuwirth has achieved extraordinary success in theater, television and film over the course of her distinguished career. In 1980, she made her Broadway debut in A Chorus Line. She then appeared in Little Me, Dancin' and Sweet Charity, for which she won her first Tony Award, followed by Damn Yankees, Fosse and The Addams Family. Bebe won her second Tony, as well as the Drama Desk, Astaire, Outer Critics Circle and Drama League Distinguished Performance of the Year Awards for her portrayal of Velma in Chicago. A few years later, she played Roxie in the show, making her the only triple-threat to have played both parts on Broadway. Her broad diversity of roles in regional theater and Off-Broadway have included Anita in West Side Story at Cleveland Opera, Katherine in The Taming of the Shew at Williamstown Theatre Festival, a Richard Greenberg play at Lincoln Center and a Woody Allen play directed by Mr. Allen at the Atlantic Theater Company. Several years ago she appeared in the critically acclaimed Here Lies Jenny, a music theater piece comprised entirely of music by Kurt Weill, at the Zipper Theatre. It was directed by Roger Rees and choreographed by Ann Reinking. Bebe is well known for her work in film and television. She won two Emmy Awards for her role of Lilith Sternin Crane on Cheers, and was nominated for Emmys for her work on Frasier and for her portrayal of Dorothy Parker in the TV movie Dash and Lilly. After recent guest appearances on The Good Wife and Blue Bloods, she now has a regular role on CBS' new series Madam Secretary. She has appeared in numerous films, including Say Anything, Green Card, Bugsy, Jumanji, Summer of Sam, Liberty Heights, Celebrity and Tadpole. Bebe is the recipient of the CTFD Rolex Dance Award, Dance Magazine Award and Sarah Siddons Society Award, among others. She is an Honorary Ziegfeld Girl and honorary member of Local One, the Stage Hands Union. She is a vice-chair of The Actors Fund, for whom she founded a program called the Dancers' Resource, aimed at relieving the particular emotional and physical challenges faced by dancers.

Arlene R. Kogod is a graduate of the University of Pennsylvania (B.A. in economics) and Trinity College (M.A. in counseling). She has worked in private practice as a mental health and youth counselor, and co-founded and facilitated a college-bound program for at-risk adolescent minority girls in a District of Columbia public high school. The program offered the girls tuition and all expenses paid provided they graduate from high school and did not become pregnant. When this program ended and the girls were college bound, Arlene, with her associate, established a lunch hour program for minority high school girls to meet and engage with professional minority women to explore career options. Additionally, Arlene worked at the Reginald Lourie Regional Center for Infants and Young Children Parenting Psychotherapy Program and the Clinical Infant Development Program, part of the National Institutes of Health. She is a member of the National Board for Certified Counselors and a State Certified Counselor. Arlene is also a member of The Cosmos Club and has served on the Board of Trustees of Arena Stage, the Sidwell Friends School, the Service Guild of Washington and the Governor's Committee for Prevention of Teenage Pregnancy. Arlene and her husband Robert are residents of Washington, D.C. and have three grown children and four grandchildren. They are active philanthropists and support many educational, healthcare and cultural organizations, especially the performing and fine arts.

Beth Newburger Schwartz is an entrepreneur who has founded and sold several businesses and is currently heading Richlynd Federal and Epoch Communications. She is known for her work as director of communications for the National Trust for Historic Preservation. Prior to joining the National Trust, she was appointed by President Clinton to co-chair the Presidential Women's History Commission and vice-chair the bi-partisan Congressional Women's Progress Commission. She also served in both Clinton administrations as associate administrator of the general services administration and outreach coordinator for the White House Office of Women's Initiatives and Outreach. Before entering public service, Beth was the founder and CEO of Corabi International Telemetrics, Inc., the company that invented and marketed the patented telepathology process that allows physicians to make diagnoses from a remote location. She was also the founder/president of Owlcat/Digital Research, Inc., the company that developed the first computer-based test preparation products for the SATs. Newburger Schwartz has also served as publisher of Washington Woman Magazine, chairman/CEO of Health Street, Inc., marketing manager of The Washington Post and the director of advertising for the New Republic Magazine. Newburger Schwartz is a former chairman and currently a trustee of the National Children's Museum and the Franklin D. Roosevelt Library. In addition to Arena Stage, she also serves on the boards of the Eleanor Roosevelt Papers, President's Council of Cornell Women, ApolloPacs and Boat Owners Association of the United States. The Cornell University graduate shared her love of theater and the arts with her late husband, Richard Schwartz, the founder of BoatUS and an extraordinary philanthropist.

Arena Stage at the Mead Center for American Theater, under the leadership of Artistic Director Molly Smith and Executive Director Edgar Dobie, is a national center dedicated to American voices and artists. Arena Stage produces plays of all that is passionate, profound, deep and dangerous in the American spirit, and presents diverse and ground-breaking work from some of the best artists around the country. Arena Stage is committed to commissioning and developing new plays and impacts the lives of over 10,000 students annually through its work in community engagement. Now in its seventh decade, Arena Stage serves a diverse annual audience of more than 300,000. Visit

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