Cheyenne Jackson, Debra Messing & More Honor Linda Lavin at Vineyard Theatre, 3/12



Stars of both stage and screen are set to join the celebration when the Tony and Pulitzer Prize-winning Vineyard Theatre honors Tony Award-winner Linda Lavin at the Off-Broadway company's annual Gala on Monday, March 12 beginning at 6:00pm at the Hudson Theater. Ms. Lavin made her Vineyard Theatre debut earlier this season in the critically acclaimed production of Nicky Silver's play THE LYONS.

A partial list of artists participating in the salute to Ms. Lavin, subject to change, includes Judy Kuhn, Cheyenne Jackson, Debra Messing, Jill Eikenberry, Michael Tucker, Celia Weston, Hope Davis, Tony Roberts, John Guare, Billy Stritch, Will Chase, Veanne Cox, Julia Murney, Colman Domingo, Ann Harada, Jessie Mueller, Jim Caruso and members of the company of The Vineyard's upcoming musical NOW. HERE. THIS. -- Hunter Bell, Susan Blackwell, Heidi Blickenstaff and Jeff Bowen and Larry Pressgrove.

In addition to honoring Ms. Lavin, the Vineyard Gala will feature special salutes to playwright Nicky Silver and City National Bank during the evening's festivities.

Charles Busch and Julie Halston will co-host the Gala. Carl Andress, who recently directed the Vineyard and Actors Fund benefit performance of Kander and Ebb's THE VISIT, will direct the evening.

It has also been announced that show-only tickets to the Gala and premium tickets (including cocktails and hors d'oeuvres) are now on sale.

Linda Lavin recently starred in The Vineyard's world premiere of THE LYONS written by Nicky Silver and directed by Mark Brokaw, earning praise across the board from critics and audiences alike for her landmark portrayal of Rita Lyons, the indomitable matriarch of a fractured family who summons her children to the bedside of their dying father. As well, Ms. Lavin's first CD, "Possibilities" -- featuring a mix of Broadway standards and cabaret songs, with musical arrangements by Billy Stritch -- was recently released, also to critical acclaim, by Ghostlight Records.

One of the most beloved actresses of stage, film and television, Linda Lavin appeared at the Kennedy Center in FOLLIES and at Lincoln Center Theatre in OTHER DESERT CITIES, THE SISTERS ROSENSWEIG (Broadway), and THE NEW CENTURY (Drama Desk Award; Off-Broadway). Broadway: COLLECTED STORIES (Tony nomination), HOLLYWOOD ARMS, THE TALE OF THE ALLERGIST'S WIFE (Tony nom.), THE DIARY OF Anne Frank (Tony nom., Drama Desk Award), GYPSY, BROADWAY BOUND (Tony, Drama Desk, Outer Critics Circle, Helen Hayes awards), THE LAST OF THE RED HOT LOVERS (Tony nom.), COP OUT, STORY THEATRE, SOMETHING DIFFERENT, IT'S A BIRD…IT'S A PLANE…IT'S SUPERMAN, A FAMILY AFFAIR. Off-Broadway: CAKEWALK; DEATH DEFYING ACTS (Variety Arts Theatre; Obie and Lortel Awards); THE MAD SHOW; OH, KAY! (Theatre World Award), and LITTLE MURDERS (Outer Critics Circle Award). Regional: FINISHING THE PICTURE, COLLECTED STORIES, DOUBT, RABBIT HOLE, DRIVING MISS DAISY. Film: "The Backup Plan," "The Muppets Take Manhattan," "See You in the Morning," "I Want to Go Home." TV: "Alice", "Barney Miller", "Room for Two", "Conrad Bloom". TV films "The $5.20 an Hour Dream", "A Matter of Life and Death", "A Place to Call Home", "Lena: My 100 Children", "Best Friends for Life", "The Ring", "Collected Stories". Cabaret: SONGS AND CONFESSIONS OF A ONE-TIME WAITRESS; national appearances include Birdland, The Metropolitan Room, Wilmington Symphony, NY. Upcoming: the film "Wanderlust."

Gala participants include Judy Kuhn (LES MISÉRABLES, Vineyard's ELI'S COMIN'); Cheyenne Jackson ("30 Rock," Vineyard's production of Nicky Silver's THE AGONY AND THE AGONY), Hope Davis (Vineyard's PTERODACTYLS by Mr. Silver, "American Splendor"), Will Chase ("Smash," HIGH FIDELITY);, Jill Eikenberry and Michael Tucker (best known for their roles in the long-running series "L.A. Law"), Celia Weston ("Alice," "The Village"),Tony Roberts (THE TALE OF THE ALLERGIST'S WIFE, "Annie Hall"), Veanne Cox (Tony Nominee for COMPANY, Vineyard's THE ALTRUISTS by Mr. Silver), , Julia Murney (THE WILD PARTY, WICKED), Jessie Mueller (ON A CLEAR DAY YOU CAN SEE FOREVER), Billy Stritch (Grammy Award-winning composer and musical director for Ms. Lavin's CD "Possibilities"), John Guare (Tony Award-winning playwright), Colman Domingo (Vineyard's THE SCOTTSBORO BOYS and A BOY AND HIS SOUL), Ann Harada (Vineyard's AVENUE Q), Jim Caruso (host of "Cast Party" at Birdland) and the cast of The Vineyard's upcoming NOW.HERE.THIS, the new musical from the creators of [title of show].

Nicky Silver is the playwright most produced by The Vineyard: the world premiere of THE LYONS marked his ninth play to debut at The Vineyard, following PTERODACTYLS (Oppenheimer Award, Kesselring Award, Drama Desk nom, Outer Critics Circle nom), RAISED IN CAPTIVITY (Drama Desk nom, Outer Critics Circle nom), MY MARRIAGE TO Ernest Borgnine (Vineyard Lab Production), THE MAIDEN'S PRAYER, THE EROS TRILOGY, THE ALTRUISTS, BEAUTIFUL CHILD and THE AGONY AND THE AGONY (Vineyard Lab Production).

A longtime supporter and industry partner of Vineyard Theatre, City National Bank is the wholly owned subsidiary of City National Corporation (NYSE: CYN) with 79 offices nationwide. City National has a long and successful history of meeting the financial needs of the entertainment industry and currently has two offices in New York and banks about 40% of all Broadway shows.

Charles Busch -- the author of numerous plays, in which he has also starred, including DIVINE SISTER, VAMPIRE LESBIANS OF SODOM, THE LADY IN QUESTION and PSYCHO BEACH PARTY -- wrote THE TALE OF THE ALLERGIST'S WIFE which starred Linda Lavin and for which she received a Tony nomination for Best Actress.

Julie Halston, who has co-starred opposite Charles Busch in many of his plays, has appeared on Broadway in GYPSY, TWENTIETH CENTURY, THE WOMEN, HAIRSPRAY and is currently appearing in ANYTHING GOES.

Honorees at Vineyard Theatre Galas in recent years include Susan Stroman, John Kander, Marian Seldes, Edward Albee and Paula Vogel.

One of the nation´s leading non-profit theatre companies dedicated to new plays and musicals and bold programming, The Vineyard has consistently premiered provocative, groundbreaking works including the Pulitzer Prize-winning productions of Edward Albee´s THREE TALL WOMEN and Paula Vogel´s HOW I LEARNED TO DRIVE, Tarell Alvin McCraney´s WIG OUT!, The Civilians´ THIS BEAUTIFUL CITY, Nicky Silver´s PTERODACTYLS and RAISED IN CAPTIVITY, the Laura Nyro musical ELI´S COMIN´, A BOY AND HIS SOUL, written and performed by Colman Domingo, Adam Rapp´s THE METAL CHILDREN, Will Eno´s MIDDLETOWN, Christopher Shinn's PICKED, and most recently the acclaimed premiere of Zayd Dohrn's OUTSIDE PEOPLE, directed by Evan Cabnet in a co-production with Naked Angels. Following its premiere last fall of THE LYONS, The Vineyard co-produced with The Actors Fund a concert version of John Kander and Fred Ebb's musical THE VISIT -- starring Chita Rivera and John Cullum -- on Broadway. Next up at The Vineyard is the world premiere of NOW.HERE.THIS., from the creators of [title of show], beginning previews March 7. The Vineyard will conclude the 2011-12 season with a developmental lab production of John Kander and Greg Pierce's musical THE LANDING.

The Vineyard produced the world premiere of the musical THE SCOTTSBORO BOYS -- with music and lyrics by John Kander and Fred Ebb, book by David Thompson, and direction and choreography Susan Stroman - in March 2010 and on Broadway. Vineyard Theatre is a recipient of the Tony Award for the musical AVENUE Q and continues as producer of the musical´s current production at New World Stages in New York. The Vineyard also produced the musical [title of show] both off and on Broadway.

Douglas Aibel is Artistic Director of Vineyard Theatre, Jennifer Garvey-Blackwell is Executive Producer, Sarah Stern is Co-Artistic Director and Rebecca Habel is Managing Director.

Tickets for the evening for dinner and performance range from $750 - $2,000 and tables are $10,000, $15,000 and $20,000. For reservations or more information, please call 212-353-3366 ext. 242.

For tickets and more information visit or call 212-353-3366.

Photo Credit: Walter McBride/WM Photos

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