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The Crowd: Cue the spotlight for SCR namesakes

January 23, 2014|By B.W. Cook
  • Donor Mary Lou Shattuck, SPIN's development director Kim Frazier, South Coast Plaza’s Debra Gunn Downing and David Grant present SPIN with a check for $8,500 from South Coast Plaza retailers.
Donor Mary Lou Shattuck, SPIN's development director… (Lee Healy )

It is a very special week for South Coast Repertory.

On Wednesday, the complex was renamed the David Emmes and Martin Benson Theatre Center. Previously, the SCR complex had taken the name of Paul Folino, former board president and honorary trustee, whose $10-million gift in 2002 was honored with the renaming of SCR the Folino Theatre Center.

Last fall, on the occasion of the 50th-anniversary gala season opening ball for SCR, Folino generously told the patrons gathered for the celebration that his gift in honor of the 50th anniversary was to rename the center and recognize its founders, Emmes and Benson. At dusk Wednesday, outside the theater complex, loyal SCR devotees gathered for the official unveiling of the name change, followed by a champagne reception held in the SCR lobby.

In other SCR news, "The Light in the Piazza," winner of six Tony Awards, will debut on the Segerstrom Stage on Jan. 31. The musical, book by Craig Lucas, will be produced as part of the 50th season at SCR. Lucas has produced five of his own plays at the Orange County theatrical complex over the past five years.

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The "Piazza" score is by Adam Guettel, the grandson of composer Richard Rodgers. Honorary producers of the production are Joan and Andy Fimiano and Laurie Smits Staude, along with corporate honorary producer Haskell & White LLP. For more information and tickets, go to http://www.scr.org.

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'Dancing for Tomorrow's Stars' returns

The Assistance League of Newport-Mesa will present the seventh annual "Dancing for Tomorrow's Stars" fundraising gala March 29. The Grove of Anaheim will once again be the setting for the performance show, which will be produced by honorary chair Stephanie Argyros.

The evening will feature a served dinner along with the dancing competition, which pairs community leaders with professional ballroom dancers in a format similar to that of the popular ABC television production "Dancing with the Stars." As of this publication date, local celebrities signed up to dance include Marisa Wayne, Lisa Heil, Lauren Kear and Brad Davidson.

This week on the coast, Newport Beach jeweler Black, Starr & Frost hosted a cocktail reception in the store to announce the upcoming dancing show. Donors mingled with cast and crew Thursday evening to set the wheels of production in motion.

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SCP retailers help homeless

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