Music Theater Works Hosts Annual Producers Gala ALL THAT JAZZ in May

The event will be held on Saturday, May 11 at 6 p.m. 

By: Mar. 01, 2024
Music Theater Works Hosts Annual Producers Gala ALL THAT JAZZ in May
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Music Theater Works has announced its annual gala, the Producers Gala, All that Jazz, Saturday, May 11 at 6 p.m. All That Jazz, at the Kenilworth Club at 410 Kenilworth Ave., begins at 6 p.m. with a cocktail hour and is followed by a sit-down dinner, the presentation of the third annual Joyce Ruth Saxon Award for Excellence to Bridget McDonough, live and silent auctions and entertainment from Music Theater Works’ artists. Black tie/cocktail attire is encouraged. Funds raised at All that Jazz support Music Theater Works education and artistic programming. Tickets are $250 each with table sponsorships starting at $2500 for ten people.

“Everyone at Music Theater Works looks forward to the Producers Gala each year,” said Producing Artistic Director Kyle A. Dougan. “It gives us an opportunity to have many of our sponsors and supporters in one room to celebrate past accomplishments and look forward to the new season. This year, we honor Bridget McDonough, one of the founders of the organization, as the Joyce Ruth Saxon Award for Excellence recipient during this night of fine dining, fundraising and unforgettable performances.”

The third annual Joyce Ruth Saxon Award for Excellence will be awarded to Bridget McDonough for his years of dedicated and generous support of Music Theater Works. The Joyce Ruth Saxon Award for Excellence, named in honor of the longtime supporter of Music Theater Works who passed away in 2022. The award is given each year to an individual who has made an impact on the art of music theater in Chicago, through artistic expression, public advocacy or significant financial support; recognizes the importance of engaging the entire community in the public, private, arts and business sector; is instrumental in the creation of great art and has demonstrated through their actions, works, and words their personal and profound commitment to our beloved art of musical theater in Chicago. The 2023 award recipient was Howard Hallengren.

ABOUT BRIDGET McDONOUGH, 2024 Joyce Ruth Saxon Award for Excellence Recipient

Bridget McDonough was employed in arts management from 1978, when she graduated from Northwestern University, until her 2019 retirement as general manager of Music Theater Works, which she co-founded (as Light Opera Works) in 1980 with Philip Kraus and others. Prior to founding Light Opera Works she worked for The Organic Theater Company in Chicago, The Troupe in Colorado Springs and Actors Equity Association.

She has served on the boards of many arts and civic organizations both nationally and locally in the Chicago area.  She is past president of the Rotary Club of Evanston and the North Shore International Network, where she still holds memberships. She served on the boards of the Evanston Convention and Visitors’ Bureau, Evanston Chamber of Commerce, Evanston Arts Alliance, National Alliance for Musical Theatre, Chicago Music Alliance, Around the Coyote, as well as the School of Communication Alumni Board at Northwestern University and the tourism committee of Chicago’s North Shore Convention and Visitors’ Bureau.

Ms. McDonough was honored by the Evanston YWCA with their “Women on the Move” Award in 1991 and by the Evanston Chamber of Commerce with their 2009 Public Service/Nonprofit Person of the Year Award.

She is currently on the board of the Musicians Club of Women and Season of Concern in Chicago, the Tubac Nature Center in Arizona, and Write 4 Art in Los Angeles. She is a member of the advisory board of the Rocky Mountain Ballet Theatre in Montana.Ms. McDonough served as an international judge at the Second Vladimir Kurochkin International Competition of Young Artists of Operetta and Musicals in Yekaterinburg, Russia, and VIBE (Vienna International Ballet Experience) in Missoula, Montana. She currently is serving as an international juror for Ballet Beyond Borders. 

Prior to her career in arts management, she studied dance and theater in Milwaukee and Chicago.