The Night of the Stars took place Sunday evening, April 18, 2021, on the sidewalk in front of the Sierra Madre Playhouse. Attendees were there in person and online through Facebook Live.
By Jean Sudbury
Christian Lebano, Artistic Director, welcomed everyone to the Sierra Madre Playhouse, as he has always done before each play. Sidewalk stars were revealed, honoring heroes of the Sierra Madre Playhouse. He celebrated all involved as heroes, mentioning the audience members as part of the playhouse. In this introduction, he thanked the patrons and the donors for support and mentioned that 227 new donors have been added to the list in the difficult year of 2020. Christian said that the donors made it clear that the Sierra Madre Playhouse is an essential part of the City of Sierra Madre. He thanked board members, past and present, the staff and the volunteers for their involvement in keeping the playhouse vibrant.
The building has been a cultural events center for almost 100 years. The Sierra Madre Playhouse has received Ovation Awards, NAACP Awards, and foundation grants. Each member of the organization puts in countless volunteer hours to keep the playhouse a vibrant arts performance and education center. The importance of community interaction is clearly shown through the history of the playhouse.
David Gordon, Board President gave a speech honoring the past, present and future of this organization. In his speech, he announced the next show, ‘’You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown,’’ which will take place at Memorial Park this summer. Tickets for this play will be available for purchase online starting May 3.
Ward Calloway, a long-time board member, gave a wonderful tribute to George Enyedi, past President of the Sierra Madre Playhouse. He described him as a resourceful person, an immigrant who became a citizen, and went from ditch digger to CPO. George took over the finances for the playhouse. Through his tireless efforts, negotiations and fund raising, he enabled the purchase of the building in 2001. He also did a great amount of refurbishing and remodeling of the building so the legal standards were met to keep the organization strong.
Barbara Scofield, Director, gave a tribute to Barry Schwam, whom she has known since high school days at PHS. She described Barry as extraordinarily unique, with a quirky character, and always involved in an unusual artistic project. She lauded Barry for keeping his creativity flowing through his entire life.
The stars were revealed, cake was served with champagne to the guests on the sidewalk. The Artistic Director, Christian Lebano, thanked all for supporting the playhouse and ended the Night of the Stars by saying, ‘’Hopefully, we will see you in September.’’ The five stars placed permanently in front of the playhouse hold the names, Charles Andrese, Founder; Verna Chilton; George Enyedi, Visionary; Barry Schwam; and Stan Zalas, Founder. These stars will always be remembered by the community as vibrant members of this stellar organization.
Don’t miss ‘’You’re a Good Man, Charlie Brown,’’ which will take place at Memorial Park from July 30th through August 29. Tickets for these shows will be available online starting May 3rd.
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