Dinner Theater Gala Showcases
West Valley College
Music, magic and merriment will come together April 28 in a
gala production of the smash Broadway hit “Pippin” as part of a dinner theater gala
event that celebrates West Valley College.
“I wanted to find a way to celebrate the richness of West
Valley College with our communities and I also wanted to build relationships
and friendships within the community,” said WVC President Lori Gaskin. “The
best way to do that, from my perspective, is to showcase the student and
faculty talent that so distinguishes us.”
Three departments in particular will be highlighted during
the gala as theater arts, music and dance students perform in the musical. Written
by “Wicked” creator Stephen Schwartz, “Pippin” tells the story of a young
prince who longs to discover the secret of happiness. He seeks it in the
glories of the battlefield and, in the end, finds it in the simple pleasures of
home and family.
Brad Weisberg, director of the production and chair of the
theater arts department, said “Pippin” was a natural choice because it is a
truly ensemble production, highlighting not only actors, but also dancers and
singers. That emphasis fits well with the mission of the West Valley College
Musical Theater Collaborative, which not only brings together acting, singing
and dance students for the production, but also helps them to understand they
need training in all three areas.
The idea, he said, is not to turn students into one of the
other types of performers. Rather, it is about students learning from the other
performance disciplines, such as an actor learning voice techniques from a
singing class, and broadening the scope and training of WVC’s performance
“This goes beyond just getting together to do a show,”
Weisberg said. “It is really about creating a stronger student base for all
three of these programs.”
Half of the net proceeds from the gala will go to the three
departments and the other half goes toward general educational and student support
needs on campus. Last year’s gala, WVC’s first, drew 330 people and brought in
$10,000 in total net proceeds.
Tickets to the gala cost $45 per person and include
appetizers, a hearty dinner, wine, dessert, the “Pippin” performance as well as
some added magic and merriment. The whole family is welcome.
“We invite everyone to join us for this extravaganza that
showcases our students and our college and the richness and vibrancy that we
have here,” Gaskin said.
Dinner begins at 6:30 p.m., with the performance starting at
8 p.m. Tickets, which must be purchased in advance, are available at: http://westvalleycollege-esearch.eventbrite.com/?srnk=1.