BWW TV: First Look at Highlights of 30th Anniversary of S.T.A.G.E. - Betty Buckley, Helen Reddy, Jason Gould, Shirley Jones & More!
Over two dozen stars of film, stage and television were given a standing ovation by a sold out crowd for the 30th Anniversary of S.T.A.G.E. at the historic Saban Theatre in Beverly Hills, CA Saturday, May 10, 2014. And, on hand to get up close and personal with the stars, were BWW TV's longtime Los Angeles Correspondent and Co-Producer Michael Sterling with Videographer/Co-Producer, Jordan Santacana. Check out the video below!
This one-night-only Southland Theatre Artists Goodwill Event (S.T.A.G.E.) spectacular (www.stagela.com) raised close to $275,000 for HIV/AIDS direct care, education, and advocacy services offered by AIDS Project Los Angeles (APLA). Since the first S.T.A.G.E. show in 1984, the event has featured more than 300 stars raising nearly $7 million for APLA and other Southern California AIDS service organizations. Before the show began, Director David Galligan was presented with APLA's Crystal Apple Award, the organization's highest honor.
S.T.A.G.E. marked its 30th production with a new theme: "S.T.A.G.E. Goes to the Movies," which showcased the stellar cast performing popular musical numbers and featuring film clips from 100 years of American cinema. The constellation of stars gathered for this year's show included Obba Babatundé, Rona Barrett, Tom Berklund, Mary Beth Black, Debby Boone, Betty Buckley, Richard Chamberlain, Carole Cook, David Engel, Julie Garnyé, Mitzi Gaynor, Jason Gould, Bill Hutton, Heather Macrae, Jon Maher, Pat Marshall, Donna Mckechnie, Patricia Morison, Jeffrey Scott Parsons, Helen Reddy, Rex Reed, Jake Simpson, Kevin Spirtas and Mary Wilson.
Hosted by acclaimed film historian Robert Osborne of Turner Classic Movies, and featuring appearances by noted celebrity journalists Rona Barrett, "S.T.A.G.E. Goes to the Movies" was a vibrant celebration of all things cinema. Tony© Award-winning actress Amongst the stars performing were Betty Buckley who opened the show with an evocative performance of "As If We Never Said Goodbye" from the musical Sunset Boulevard. Jason Gould (son of Barbra Streisand and Elliott Gould) took the spotlight with "The Way You Look Tonight" from the 1936 motion picture Swing Time. Grammy® Award winner Helen Reddy performed "Candle on the Water" from the film Pete's Dragon. Bill Hutton crooned a haunting rendition of Alan and Marilyn Bergman's "How Do You Keep the Music Playing" from the movie Best Friends. Shirley Jones reminisced about starring in the great movie musicals Oklahoma! and Carousel and then enjoyed Heather MacRae's lilting performance of "Surrey With the Fringe On Top," originally sung by her father, Gordon MacRae. Grammy© Award winner Debby Boone delivered an elegant version of "It Might As Well Be Spring" from State Fair which her father, Pat Boone, sang in the 1962 film. Distinguished actor Richard Chamberlain delightfully demonstrated his song and dance skills in "I Could Have Dance All Night" from My Fair Lady. Emmy® Award-winning Mitzi Gaynor had the audience in a lather with her sailor-costumed performance of "Honey Bun" and "I'm Gonna Wash That Man Right Out Of My Hair" from South Pacific, while Jeffrey Scott Parsons and David Engel brought to contemporary life the great tap dance number "Begin the Beguine" from Broadway Melody of 1940, made famous by Eleanor Powell and Fred Astaire. Engel also sparkled on a solo vocal turn with "Movies Were Movies" from the musical Mack and Mabel. Tony© Award winner Donna McKechnie shared "Astaire," a song and dance, and personal experience with and about the legendary Fred Astaire, while Astaire's daughter Ava Astaire McKenzie looked on with Robert Osborne. Jake Simpson proved why he's a two-time "Star Search" winner bringing a modern edge to "You Don't Know What Love Is" from Behind the Eight Ball. Days of Our Lives' Kevin Spirtas raised temperatures with "Stayin' Alive" from Saturday Night Fever; while Film and TV's Carole Cook delivered a comedy cavalcade followed by a stirring rendition of Billy Barnes' "Something Cool." Mary Wilson was nothing less than Supreme singing
Artie Butler's "Here's To Life" from Full Metal Jacket, while Betty Buckley returned to close the show with her signature song "Memory" from the Broadway mega-hit musical Cats.
SiriusXM Radio host Frank DeCaro led a spirited live auction at intermission that also secured pledges dedicated to bringing APLA clients a proper Thanksgiving dinner. The show was directed, as it has been for three decades, by David Galligan, with John McDaniel returning as music director. Dan Mojica and Lee Martino choreographed the production.
Funds raised through S.T.A.G.E. support APLA programs including its Vance North Necessities of Life Program food pantries; freestanding and mobile dental clinics; in-home health services; housing assistance; HIV prevention and testing efforts; and a range of other APLA services that thousands of Angelenos affected by HIV/AIDS depend on. S.T.A.G.E. is among the most enduring and valuable sources of private support for the agency's HIV/AIDS care, prevention, and advocacy work. www.apla.org