David DiCristofaro to be Honored for The Wells Fargo Diversity Project at Pasadena Playhouse, 11/6


The Wells Fargo Theatrical Diversity Project opening night celebration honors Playhouse Executive Board Member David DiCristofaro of Wells Fargo Bank tonight for his leadership and support of theatrical diversity at The Pasadena Playhouse. The evening is held in conjunction with the official opening night performance of BLUES FOR AN ALABAMA SKY starring Robin Givens.

"I am very happy that this year's Theatrical Diversity Project celebration will take place in connection with the opening of a play that I dearly love," said Artistic Director Sheldon Epps. "It is entirely apt and fully deserved that the honoree this year is David DiCristofaro of Wells Fargo Bank. David has been an incredibly valuable member and officer of The Playhouse board for many years, and a dynamic supporter of many important organizations in our community. In addition, both he and Wells Fargo have been hugely involved in the mission of the Diversity Project since its inception. Their support has been fully tangible and very much at the heart of the success of the Project's goals, both on stage and off. It is our great honor to honor them this year. I hope that their many friends and colleagues will join us as we celebrate their many accomplishments."

"As the new Chairman of the Diversity Committee, I am honored to be leading the diversity efforts at The Playhouse on behalf of the Board of Directors and to be working with the Theatrical Diversity Project members to raise important funds for The Playhouse's education and outreach programs during this year's annual fundraiser event in connection with the opening of BLUES FOR AN ALABAMA SKY, stated Playhouse Board Member Darrell Miller. "David DiCristofaro of Wells Fargo is the perfect honoree for the Diversity Award based on his impressive record of service as a Pasadena Playhouse Board Member, liaison to Wells Fargo, and for being a dedicated champion focused on improving the long-term success and strength of The Playhouse through its education and outreach programs."

"Wells Fargo has proudly sponsored the Diversity Project since 2005 to bring diverse shows to The Playhouse stage and to allow children of all backgrounds to experience the magic of the theater," said David DiCristofaro, Wells Fargo Greater San Gabriel Community Bank president. "We are only as strong as the communities we support and The Pasadena Playhouse is a terrific partner in providing exciting activities and opportunities to all members of our community."

DiCristofaro assumed his current role as senior vice president and regional president for Wells Fargo's Greater San Gabriel Community Bank in Los Angeles in March 2010, overseeing nearly 60 banking stores in Pasadena and neighboring communities. Previously, he was regional president for the South Coast Community Bank for four years. He also served as head of Wells Fargo's retail bank financial management and development programs for Greater Los Angeles. DiCristofaro joined the former Norwest Bank in 1997 as managing director of online banking. In 1999, he was named to head finance and strategy for Wells Fargo's Northern California Community Banking region, where he also oversaw operations and group services. Before joining Wells Fargo, DiCristofaro worked with Financial Institutions Consulting Group, FinExc Group LLC as senior consultant and chief financial officer at Roosevelt Bank as vice president of corporate planning. DiCristofaro is active in non-profits in the community and also serves on the Board of the American Red Cross of Greater Los Angeles.

The Pasadena Playhouse's Theatrical Diversity Project was created in 2005 to support The Playhouse Artistic Director's vision to build a legacy of artistic and theatrical diversity at The Pasadena Playhouse and is currently named the Wells Fargo Theatrical Diversity Project in honor of its corporate sponsor. Operating under the overall Playhouse mission, governed by The Playhouse Board of Directors and a Committee chaired by a Playhouse Board member, the Theatrical Diversity Project is committed to promoting diverse programming at The Playhouse by engaging writers, actors, designers and directors of all ethnic backgrounds and providing opportunities within the craft to all age groups, on and off the stage. The objective of the Theatrical Diversity Project and its Committee is to increase and maintain diversity of talent on stage in all productions and behind the scenes on the crews, production staff and in the box office. In addition, the committee will strive to work closely with the Theatrical Diversity Project in connection with the creation of mentoring and internship programs to help youth from the Pasadena Unified School District and surrounding areas develop and achieve greater goals. The Committee is also committed to building on the relationship with the senior citizens in our community whose dedication, wisdom and guidance we rely on in our efforts to preserve the unique history of The Pasadena Playhouse.

Additionally, Diversity Project donations support production budgets of shows such as BLUES FOR AN ALABAMA SKY and make it possible to put celebrated plays with exceptionally talented actors on stage.

The annual Theatrical Diversity Project event has featured past performances by Leslie Uggams in Uptown Downtown as well as Laurence Fishburne and Angela Bassett in Fences, and since its inception has raised more than $350,000 to support The Playhouse's mission of theatrical diversity.

The Pasadena Playhouse (Sheldon Epps, Artistic Director and Stephen Eich, Executive Director), presents BLUES FOR AN ALABAMA SKY starring Robin Givens, written by Pearl Cleage and directed by Sheldon Epps now playing through November 27.
BLUES FOR AN ALABAMA SKY unfolds in the summer of 1930 in Harlem, NY, just as the harsh realities of the Great Depression have devastated an ebullient decade of the Harlem renaissance. Disease and poverty have overshadowed the creative euphoria that permeated and fueled a surge of African American artists, writers and luminaries. BLUES FOR AN ALABAMA SKY introduces a rich cast of characters, scrambling to survive and make some sense of their overlapping personalities, politics and love lives: Angel is a struggling blues singer and nightclub performer who cannot find a job. Her friend Guy, a costume designer, is also out of work but dreams of being hired to design dresses for the famous African-American singer and dancer Josephine Baker. Their neighbor Delia, a social worker, is trying to organize a family planning clinic in Harlem. Their friend Sam, a doctor, works long hours delivering babies at the Harlem Hospital. And Leland, having recently moved to New York from Tuskegee sees in Angel a memory of lost love and a reminder of those "Alabama skies where the stars are so thick it's bright as day."
The Theatrical Diversity Fundraiser will be held at The Pasadena Playhouse on Sunday, November 6, 2011, in conjunction with the opening night of BLUES FOR AN ALABAMA SKY. The event will consist of a pre-show Champagne reception in the Engemann Family Courtyard beginning at 3:30 p.m. At 4:45 p.m., just before the performance begins, David DiCristofaro will be recognized from the stage of The Playhouse in a brief presentation of the Diversity Award. Following the performance, a VIP party will be hosted at Noor in its' Sofia Ballroom (260 East Colorado Boulevard-in the Paseo Colorado), recipient of Pasadena Weekly's "Best Banquet Hall 2011" award. The reception will feature a BLUES FOR AN ALABAMA SKY martini sponsored by Svedka Vodka.

Donations to attend the Theatrical Diversity Fundraiser event and performance start at $250 and are available by calling The Pasadena Playhouse Development office at 626-921-1156 or by email at blewis@pasadenaplayhouse.org. All patron levels of support are available upon request.

BLUES FOR AN ALABAMA SKY is now playing at The Pasadena Playhouse through November 27, 2011. The Pasadena Playhouse is located at 39 South El Molino Avenue, Pasadena, CA 91101. The performance schedule is Tuesday - Friday at 8:00 p.m.; Saturday at 4:00 p.m. and 8:00 p.m.; and Sunday at 2:00 p.m. and 7:00 p.m. Regular ticket price range is from $39.00 - $69.00, with Premium Seating available for $100.00. Tickets are available by calling The Pasadena Playhouse at 626-356-7529 or by visiting The Pasadena Playhouse Box Office, Monday from 12:00 p.m. - 5:00 p.m. and Tuesday - Sunday from 12:00 p.m. until 6:00 p.m. during non-performance dates and Tuesday - Sunday from 12:00 p.m. - 8:00 p.m. on performance dates. The box office is closed on holidays. Tickets are available 24 hours online at www.PasadenaPlayhouse.org. Group Sales (8 or more) are available by calling 626-921-1161. For additional information on BLUES FOR AN ALABAMA SKY and other productions at The Pasadena Playhouse, visit www.PasadenaPlayhouse.org.


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