Category Archives: Hollywood

Kym Whitley and D. L. Hughley Partner with Special Needs Network in 4-Week Gift-Giving Campaign

Kym Whitley
Kym Whitley

*(Los Angeles) — Special Needs Network under the direction of Areva Martin, will partner with actor D.L. Hughley and the D.L. Hughley Foundation; and Young & Hungry star, Kym Whitley, as they embark upon a 4-week journey to collect 10,000 gifts for deserving children; children with autism, and children in foster care.

Coming off of perhaps the most divisive presidential campaign in modern history, the participants hope this season of giving will encourage individuals and businesses alike to help create a new tone and focus for a deeply divided nation. Giving to others in need can be a great help in empowering one’s self, while easing fears and spreading joy.

“Too many families are frightened about their livelihoods, safety, and security in this post election America. Now more than ever, we need to rally together and show each other love and support. That’s why I’m partnering with Special Needs Network for 4 weeks of Christmas giving. It’s the perfect opportunity to spread joy in the midst of a grey and an uncertain time,” explains D.L. Hughley. Continue reading

Pasadena Playhouse Presents Student Matinee Performance of ‘A Cinderella Christmas’

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* (PASADENA, CA)  Happy Holidays! The Pasadena Playhouse (Sheldon Epps, Artistic Director and Danny Feldman, Producing Artistic Director)) announced on Thursday that the opening night celebration of this year’s Panto at the Playhouse, A CINDERELLA CHRISTMAS, on Thursday, December 8, 2016 will be dedicated as a benefit event with proceeds supporting The Pasadena Playhouse Education Programs and a student matinee performance over the holiday season.

The benefit will be co-chaired by Anita Lawler and Julietta Perez. Benefit Committee members also include Darrell Brooke, Renee Chang, Amber Gerhardt, Kathryn Hamilton, Emilie Lanstra,   Elsa Luna, Rebecca Lythgoe, Kris Lythgoe, Pam King, Cherol Nellon, Jennifer Rogers, and Melissa Tyson.

The benefit includes a VIP pre-show reception in the Carrie Hamilton Theatre of The Pasadena Playhouse, including delicious hors d’ oeuvres, desserts, beverages, and a post-show celebration with the cast of A CINDERELLA CHRISTMAS.

Julietta Perez, Panto Benefit Co-Chair, says, “I look forward to Panto at the Playhouse every year because it always such a sensational show! It’s an honor to attend Opening Night, filled with holiday cheer, and know we are helping children attend the theatre and have their first introduction to this magical art form, who otherwise would not have the opportunity.” Continue reading

Cirque du Soleil Accident Leaves Set Technician Dead

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*After recently seeing Toruk: The first Flight, a new Cirque du Soleil show that opens in January; but previewed at Los Angeles’ Staples Center in November, I was reminded of the admiration and respect I have for the work that these athletes do as performers; and the team behind the scenes that supports them. Yet at the same time we in the audience wonder at what cost are these jaw-dropping feats accomplished or perfected. Today offered a sad reality as the news of one of the brands employees, a technician who was preparing the set for a performance of Cirque du Soleil’s show, ‘Luzia,’ was struck by a piece of lifting equipment and later succumbed to his injuries.

According to an ABC News report…

San Francisco police responded to the accident at 6:43 p.m. in the city’s Mission Bay neighborhood. “The employee was transported to the hospital with life threatening injuries,” police said in a statement, adding that investigators would be on scene to determine the cause of the accident.

“It is with immense sadness that we report a fatal accident that occurred on Nov. 29, during the preset of the show “Luzia” in San Francisco,” Cirque du Soleil said in a statement. “One of our employees, a technician on the show, was struck by a lift and passed away from his injuries.”

The company declined to release the person’s name. Tuesday’s 8 p.m. show was canceled.

 

 

Pasadena Playhouse Tree Lighting Celebration (Free Community, Celebrity Event, Dec. 4)

L-R: Alex Newell, Lauren Taylor, and Morgan Fairchild in A CINDERELLA CHRISTMAS Photo credit: F. Scott Schafer.)
L-R: Alex Newell, Lauren Taylor, and Morgan Fairchild in ‘A Cinderella Christmas. Photo credit: F. Scott Schafer

*PASADENA, CA – The Pasadena Playhouse (Sheldon Epps, Artistic Director and Danny Feldman, Producing Artistic Director) announced today that this year’s Panto at the Playhouse, Lythgoe Family Productions’ ‘A Cinderella Christmas’ (opening Thursday, December 8, 2016) kicks off with a special Tree Lighting Celebration on Sunday, December 4, 2016 at The Pasadena Playhouse (39 S. El Molino Avenue).

The event will be hosted by Ben Giroux (CW’s Hart of Dixie), and features performances by Dawnn Lewis (A Different World), The Bob Baker Marionettes and Alex Newell (Glee) with special guests Assemblymember Chris Holden and his wife Melanie Caldwell-Holden and Lauren Taylor (“Cinderella” in ‘A Cinderella Christmas’ ) to help light the Christmas Tree.

Danny Feldman, Producing Artistic Director of The Pasadena Playhouse, said, “I can’t think of a better way to usher in the holiday season with a Tree Lighting  Celebration before next week’s opening of our production of ‘A Cinderella Christmas’ . This is a time to bring together not only our good friends and family, but a special time to share with the community as well.” Continue reading

Remember L. A. Women’s Theatre Festival on #GivingTuesday (November 29)!

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*(Los Angeles) #GivingTuesday is a global day of giving that celebrates and supports the work of nonprofit organizations and encourages people to contribute. On Tuesday, November 29, 2016, you can join the national day of generosity and make a difference.

All proceeds will go towards funding the Los Angeles Women’s Theatre Festival’s 24th Annual Festival that will be held on March 23-26, 2017. Your giving will support their venue rental, performer and tech team stipends, Champagne Gala and Awards Ceremony, and Marketing Campaign for our upcoming and exciting next Festival.

There are three ways in which you can give, help and act. Continue reading

New Cirque du Soleil Touring Show – TORUK – The First Flight – Inspired by James Cameron’s AVATAR

Photo Credit: Jesse Faatz
Photo Credit: Jesse Faatz
TORUK – The First Flight
written and directed by Michel Lemieux and Victor PilonReturns to Los Angeles at The Forum
6 Performances Only — January 12-15, 2017 — Tickets now on sale

*After a nearly sold out engagement at the Staples Center, November 11-13, the new Cirque du Soleil arena show inspired by James Cameron’s record-breaking movie AVATAR, TORUK – The First Flight returns to Los Angeles at The Forum for six performances only from January 12-15, 2017.

The show
Inspired by James Cameron’s AVATAR, TORUK – The First Flight transports you to the world of Pandora in a visually stunning live setting. Experience a storytelling odyssey through a new world of imagination, discovery, and possibility.

Through a riveting fusion of cutting-edge visuals, puppetry and stagecraft buoyed by a soaring cinematic score, Cirque du Soleil applies its unique signature style to James Cameron’s imaginary world and “makes the bond” between two kindred artistic visions that capture the imagination. Continue reading

Adopted Siblings Say Parents Kicked Them Out After ‘Extreme Makeover’ Win (Watch)

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The Friday family in happier times

*Oh man. If this is true, it is what you would call a low-down, dirty, shame. No ifs, ands, or buts, about it. Do you remember the hit show, ‘Extreme Makeover Home Edition?’ I never missed it. It was one of my favorite shows. It aired for nine seasons and ended in December 2012. But during its heydey, host Ty Pennington led a group of designers who sought out one deserving family to get their home renovated over a one week period. The team worked like crazy to get the task completed in time, and never failed to deliver. And they looked so genuinely happy for the winning family.

Well one featured family, the Friday’s, had seven children in all, including 5 newly adopted siblings. And when you watch the video (scroll down) you will see how the loving parents were on screen telling the renovation team how they had adopted these children, who were biological siblings, but needed help so badly. Forward five years, at least two of the siblings are grown, and they say that after the cameras stopped rolling, their adoptive parents kicked them, and eventually the others, to the curb.

Now an investigation has ensued.

What made the show so awesome was the entire community would come out at the end; with all kinds of congratulatory signs, as the family — who was generally sent to a place like Disneyland (all expenses paid) while the renovations were being done, would pull up behind a HUGE bus that blocked the newly renovated home and the crowd would chant, “Move that bus!” And once the bus was removed, jaws would drop at the incredible, amazing structure that stood before them.

The family (along with the designers) and the cameras would then rush into the new dwelling, and room by room, we would get to witness their glee.

The Friday’s were featured on the show in 2011. And Devonda and James Friday are seen on camera, in a most pitiful voice saying, “We desperately need you,” to come help our family.” Continue reading

The Cosby Show Coming Back To TV…”By Popular Demand?”

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*Bounce TV is bringing The Cosby Show back to television starting December 19.

The network says its decision to return the classic 80s sitcom to your home and mine was one made “by popular demand.”

The network announced the decision via a tweet:

“You asked, and we heard you loud and clear, Bouncers. We’re bringing #TheCosbyShow back by popular demand!  Tune in December 19th.  #TVOurWay” – @bouncetv

Predictably, the Twitterverse responded in kind.  Here are a few of my favorites:

“sorry would rather not imagine him drugging & raping those women between scenes. Would u air this if he’d raped your daughter?” @idkidd wrote.

“Good cause if Trump can be president we should be able to watch Cosby show. Thanks #BounceTV,” @oju1 wrote.

“Bounce TV you got be kidding me?? seriously Bill Cosby is being accused how many women on sexual abuse,” @Kellyannk308 “wrote.”  (Girl could use an editor, right?)

“Great! This show had an entire cast that made it wonderful tv,” @caramelcoat8dme wrote.

Here’s Bounce TV’s full statement:  Continue reading