Emmy, Grammy, Academy and Tony Award-Winning Star Rita Moreno headlines ‘Rising Stars: An Afternoon on the Red Carpet’ fundraiser for Gulfshore Playhouse Education
June 24, 2021
NAPLES, Fla. (June 24, 2021) – Gulfshore Playhouse, Naples’ premier professional regional theatre, and Event Chairs Dr. Rich and Mrs. Kyla de Asla, have announced actress, singer, and dancer Rita Moreno as the keynote speaker at “Rising Stars: An Afternoon on the Red Carpet” – a special fundraiser for Gulfshore Playhouse Education. Rising Stars will take place Monday, Nov. 15 at 11 a.m. at Arthrex One. Guests will enjoy an entertaining afternoon while raising funds for five key theatre education programs that inspire, transform and enrich the lives of students of all ages.
Moreno has won all four of the most prestigious awards in show business: an Oscar, a Tony, two Emmys, and a Grammy. Her countless credits span more than seven decades, beginning with her Broadway debut at age 13. Moreno has starred on Broadway and London’s West End, appeared in more than 40 feature films, and countless television shows, and has performed in numerous regional theaters including her one woman show, “Life Without Makeup” at the Berkeley Repertory Theatre. She recently also co-starred and is an Executive Producer of the Steven Spielberg remake of “West Side Story,” scheduled for December 2021 release.
Recipient of the Peabody Career Achievement Award and the Kennedy Center Honor for her lifetime contributions to American culture, she was also honored by her peers as the 50th recipient of the Screen Actors Guild Life Achievement Award. Moreno has received the Presidential Medal of Freedom by President George W. Bush and the National Medal of Arts by President Barack Obama.
Guests at Rising Stars will walk the red carpet complete with live cameras and paparazzi and enjoy featured entertainment by students from the STAR Academy program.
Funds raised from this year’s event will ensure access to vital theatre education programming that invigorates, nurtures and fosters self-confidence for numerous children throughout Southwest Florida. Each theatre education offering provides real-life skills and learning experiences readily accessible to every member of the community, thanks to reduced-price programming and scholarships.
“Education is an important component of our mission,” said Kristen Coury, CEO and producing artistic director for Gulfshore Playhouse. “From in-school residencies and pre-professional theatre training to community partnerships, audience engagement, and student matinees, our education programs have introduced tens of thousands of Southwest Florida students to the life-changing power of the arts.”
Gulfshore Playhouse Education initiatives, such as STAR Academy, offer the best theatre training in town for both students who are looking to get their first experience on stage and more seasoned actors who hope to strengthen their skills. The programs also provide students with the opportunity to learn from professional teaching artists, while making lifelong memories and friendships.
Individual tickets for Rising Stars start at $400. VIP opportunities are also available and include an intimate private reception with star Rita Moreno. Table sponsorships start at $10,000. For information about tickets or sponsorship opportunities, visit www.gulfshoreplayhouse.org or call 239-261-PLAY.
Gulfshore Playhouse is passionately committed to enriching the cultural landscape of our region by producing professional theatre to the highest artistic standards and providing unique educational opportunities to diverse groups of people in a spirit of service, adventure, and excitement. The work of Gulfshore Playhouse is inspired by a belief in the magic of theatre to expand the imagination, challenge the senses, provoke discussion, and revitalize in its audiences an understanding of our common humanity. This belief drives the care with which Gulfshore Playhouse treats its artists, audiences, students, staff, and members of the greater community.
The professional theatre is also leading the nation’s growth for arts and entertainment with progress for the new Gulfshore Playhouse at the Baker Theatre and Education Center. Recently announcing the public phase for the fundraising campaign for the new building, welcoming gifts of all sizes, the new Cultural Campus is slated to break ground this fall. The Cultural Campus has been created as a cornerstone for culture, education, and community engagement that epitomizes the region’s growing reputation as a destination for the arts. The Baker Theatre and Education Center will be home to world-class professional productions that have the power to foster connections, catalyze conversations, and bridge cultural differences. The new theatre and education center will also serve the entire region with accessible education programming and elegant cultural engagement spaces open to the public.