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Geffen Playhouse is ready to put on a show.
The Westwood-based theater has announced the details for its Aug. 7 gala, Backstage at the Geffen: Under the Stars, with a trio of honorees in Netflix chief content officer and co-CEO Ted Sarandos and wife, former U.S. Ambassador Nicole Avant, along with breakout poet Amanda Gorman. The couple will be awarded the Distinction in Service Award while Gorman will receive an Artist Impact Award.
As COVID-19 restrictions are lifted across Los Angeles this summer, event organizers are still proceeding with caution and offering hybrid events, and that’s exactly what the Geffen is planning. Per an email from the theater, the invite for this year’s Backstage at the Geffen offers guests the chance to join in-person or online. Capacity for the former option is limited, of course, to 216 guests who will be treated to “an intimate, outdoor fine dining and theater experience” that will include a three-course meal from chef Abigail Chilton of Alligator Pear Catering.
Also on the program is music, dance and intimate theater stories by secret celebrity guests. “You never know who will show up to perform, tell a story, or steal the show,” teases the promotional email. Attendance won’t come cheap: In-person packages range from $10,000 (including two VIP orchestra seats for Gil Cates Theater opening night for one year) up to $75,000 for a VIP table for 10 guests (including four VIP orchestra seats for all Gil Cates Theater Opening Nights and two VIP seats for Audrey Skirball Kenis Theater opening nights for one year). Meanwhile, streaming packages start at $300 and go to $3,000.
Sarandos, Avant and Gorman join a roster of Backstage honorees and storytellers that includes Dave Chappelle, Helen Mirren, Billy Crystal, Quincy Jones, Julie Andrews, Tom Hanks, Clint Eastwood, Kristin Chenoweth, Ben Affleck, Samuel L. Jackson, Steve Martin, Carol Burnett, Julia Louis-Dreyfus, Morgan Freeman and Jennifer Garner.
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