Ezra Knight & Sara Bareilles Join The Acting Company's Annual Reimagined Renaissance Gala

The event will take place on April 24, 2023 at Capitale, and honor Rainn Wilson and Dakin Matthews.

By: Apr. 06, 2023
Ezra Knight & Sara Bareilles Join The Acting Company's Annual Reimagined Renaissance Gala
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Ezra Knight will host The Acting Company's annual Reimagined Renaissance Gala honoring Rainn Wilson and Dakin Matthews, on April 24, 2023 at Capitale (130 Bowery). The evening will include a special performance from Grammy Award winner, Tony and Emmy nominee Sara Bareilles. There will be additional appearances by Kelley Curran ("The Gilded Age"), Allen Gilmore (Objects in the Mirror), and Chelsea Williams (Death of a Salesman).

Ezra Knight is currently in rehearsals for Vineyard Theatre's world premiere of This Land Was Made. Broadway: Mean Girls, Pretty Woman (OBC), and Cymbeline. Off-Broadway: Coal Country at The Public Theatre/Audible Theatre (original cast), Toni Stone at Roundabout Theatre (original cast), Merchant of Venice at Tfana, Oroonoko at Tfana, Julius Caesar at The Public Theatre. Regional: Ivo van Hove's A View From The Bridge at Goodman Theatre, Playing the Assassin at Penguin Rep/TheatreWorks Hartford/DTC, Othello with The Acting Company. TV: "East New York" (CBS), "The Equalizer" (CBS), "Found" (NBC), "Ordinary Joe" (NBC), "Power Book III: Raising Kanan" (Starz), "Billions" (Showtime), "Daredevil" (Netflix), "The Blacklist" (NBC), and "Law & Order" (NBC). Film: The Tender Bar, Lost Cat Corona, The Abandoned, Blood, Sand & Gold, and the short film "Symposium."

Sara Bareilles has received two Tony Award nominations, three Primetime Emmy Award nominations and nine Grammy Award nominations, garnering a 2020 Grammy in the category of Best American Roots Performance for her song "Saint Honesty," and a 2023 Grammy for Best Musical Theater Album for Into The Woods. On Broadway, she composed music and lyrics for Waitress, and stepped into the lead role in 2017, 2018, 2019, 2020 and 2021. Other musical credits include a song on the Tony Award-nominated score for SpongeBob SquarePants and Emmy Award-nominated appearance as Mary Magdalene in NBC's Jesus Christ Superstar Live. Bareilles produced original music and executive produced the musical drama series Little Voice, teaming up with Jessie Nelson, J.J. Abrams and Apple. She plays Dawn Solano on the Emmy-nominated musical comedy series "Girls5eva," and recently starred as The Baker's Wife in the Broadway revival of Stephen Sondheim and James Lapine's Into the Woods.

As previously announced, Timothy K. Saunders Jr. and Tejal P. Wadhwani serve as Co-chairs for the event. "We are excited to again co-chair this event and celebrate The Acting Company's legacy of impact on artists and audiences across the US since 1972," said Saunders. "I'm especially delighted that we will honor our fellow board member Dakin Matthews, one of the company's founding artists, with The John Houseman Award for his work as an actor, playwright, translator and dramaturg for five decades in theatre, film and television."

"We are thrilled to salute Rainn Wilson with The Joan M. Warburg Civic Engagement Award," added Wadhwani. "The award, named for the longtime President of The Acting Company's Board of Directors, recognizes Rainn's philanthropy and leadership, including his work with climate nonprofit Arctic Basecamp, and as founder of The Lidè Foundation, an educational initiative in rural Haiti that empowers women and girls through the arts."

The Acting Company's Reimagined Renaissance Gala will include cocktails beginning at 6:30 PM followed by dinner, a silent auction, live performances, and dancing.

Rainn Wilson

is an Emmy nominated and SAG Award-winning actor best known for playing the inimitable Dwight Schrute for nine seasons on NBC's "The Office." He recently wrapped "Lessons in Chemistry" with Brie Larson for Apple TV and the unscripted travel series "Geography of Bliss," which will air on Peacock in May 2023. He stars in Jerry and Marge Go Large, with Bryan Cranston and Annette Bening; "Utopia" for Amazon; Roger Michell's "Blackbird," opposite Kate Winslet; The Meg alongside Jason Statham; "Star Trek Discovery"; Hesher, opposite Natalie Portman and Joseph Gordon-Levitt; James Gunn's Super with Kevin Bacon and Elliot Page; Cooties opposite Elijah Wood; Juno; Galaxy Quest; and Almost Famous. He has an MFA from NYU's Graduate Acting Program at the Tisch School of the Arts and spent 10 years doing theatre in NYC, including The Acting Company's productions of A Midsummer Night's Dream, The Three Sisters, Romeo and Juliet, and The Two Gentlemen of Verona, before moving to LA. He was on Broadway in The Tempest with Patrick Stewart, and the Tony-nominated London Assurance. Rainn performed the critically acclaimed one-person monologue Thom Pain (based on nothing) at The Geffen; and played the lead role in the political farce The Doppelgänger (an international farce) at Steppenwolf Theater. Rainn founded the digital media company, SoulPancake (3.5 million subscribers on YouTube). He's the author of The Bassoon King and the NYT bestselling SoulPancake: Chew on Life's Big Questions. His next book, Soul Boom: Why We Need a Spiritual Revolution, releases April 25, 2023.

Dakin Matthews

is an actor, award-winning playwright, dramaturge, published translator, stage director, emeritus professor, and Shakespeare scholar. He is a Founding Member and current Board Member of The Acting Company, with whom he made his New York debut in The Hostage, The School for Scandal, The Lower Depths, and Women Beware Women. He has also appeared in gala performances, reading series events, and served as script consultant on The Acting Company's productions of The Tempest, Henry V, and Romeo and Juliet. He has been a leading actor in over 250 professional plays, including on Broadway in To Kill a Mockingbird, The Iceman Cometh, Waitress, A Man for All Seasons, Shakespeare's Henry IV, and Lincoln Center's 2023 production of Camelot. Dakin has appeared in 40 feature films (Bridge of Spies, Lincoln, True Grit) and over 300 TV episodes with recent regular and recurring roles on "Desperate Housewives," "The King of Queens," "Gilmore Girls," and "The Gilded Age." He is also a member of both the Motion Picture and the Television Academies.

The Gala Committee includes J. Barclay Collins II, Peter H. Darrow, John N. Gilbert, Margot Harley, Dana Ivey, Jessie Kelly, Ezra Knight, Dakin Matthews, Angela Pierce, Richard Reilly, Louis Rodriguez, Jean-Luc Sinniger, Earl D. Weiner, and Lori-Ann Wynter.

The Acting Company's Board of Directors includes Earl D. Weiner (Chair), Timothy K. Saunders, Jr. (Vice Chair), Robert T. Goldman (Vice President), Lori-Ann Wynter (Secretary), Jean-Luc Sinniger (Treasurer), Mary Ann Fribourg, Edgar Lansbury (Directors Emeritus), and Margot Harley (Founder).

Tickets are available for purchase at https://theactingcompany.org/gala. For information on table purchase and gala sponsorship opportunities please contact hcohen@theactingcompany.org.

About The Acting Company

Under the leadership of Artistic Director Kent Gash, Producing Director Devin Brain and Managing Director Erik Schroeder, The Acting Company brings professional productions and education programs, in-school residencies, and teacher training workshops to thousands of audience members and students in underserved communities and schools each year. Founded by John Houseman and Margot Harley, the company seeks to develop emerging actors and build enthusiastic, knowledgeable audiences for the theater in towns across the United States. The Acting Company launched the careers of nearly 500 actors, including Kevin Kline, Patti LuPone, Mary Lou Rosato, Keith David, Rainn Wilson, Lorraine Toussaint, Frances Conroy, Harriet Harris, Lisa Banes, Jeffrey Wright, Hamish Linklater, Jesse L. Martin, Roslyn Ruff, Jimonn Cole, and Kelley Curran.

Among many accolades, The Acting Company received the 2003 Tony Award for Excellence in the Theater, and recently won the 2019 Audelco Award for Best Play for its production of Nambi E. Kelley's Native Son, directed by Seret Scott.

Since 1972, The Acting Company has performed for over 4 million people in 48 States, 10 foreign countries, on and Off-Broadway, and at leading resident theaters including The Guthrie and The Kennedy Center. New works commissioned by the company include plays by William Finn, Marcus Gardley, Rebecca Gilman, John Guare, Beth Henley, Tony Kushner, Lynn Nottage, Meg Miroshnik, Ntozake Shange, Maria Irene Fornés, Spalding Gray, Marsha Norman, Charles Smith, Samm-Art Williams, and Wendy Wasserstein.

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