The 25th Annual SCLA ‘Simply Shakespeare’ Benefit
The Shakespeare Center of Los Angeles (SCLA) recently presented its 25th Annual Simply Shakespeare benefit reading of “Twelfth Night,” on The Broad Stage in Santa Monica. The SCLA event honored long-time Shakespeare Center supporters Rita Wilson and Tom Hanks for their 25-year commitment to bringing the works of William Shakespeare to the L.A. community and for creating programs for young people throughout the city.
Jackie Watson, the French reporter, was on-site (SCLA) and speared her wall down the red carpet to catch up with both Tom Hanks and his wife Rita Wilson. Hanks and Wilson gladly shared some information with Jackie concerning the event and the roles they have played to keep the benefit alive.
Jackie also spoke with A-list celebrity and SCLA center supporter, Jason Alexander who admittedly likes to ‘mess up’ the Shakespearean plays during the event by adding songs and dialect that he says would probably make Shakespeare spin in his grave. Why are we not surprised?
Martin Short was also among the stars whom Jackie spoke with. As they chatted away about their favorite Shakespearean plays, they were both surprised to find out that they are equally huge fans of ‘Romeo and Juliet.’ So much so, that in fact, they have decided to star in their own performance of the play. Jackie, of course, will play Juliet and Martin will star as Romeo. I think that is a fantastic idea and I do believe that it would be one of the most romantic performances of all time. But I do worry, however, that the play might not get past the first rehearsal, because as is presumed by Martin, there would be a lot of french kissing.
The SCLA event was, of course, a huge success as the star-studded cast included other A-list performers such as Bette Midler, William Shatner, Gillian Jacobs, Anthony Mackie, Eric Idle, Glenn Howerton, Tessa Thompson and Christina Applegate.
All proceeds from the event will support the SCLA and its arts based veteran employment and youth employment programs for inner-city youth, arts education in local schools, and professional union contracted productions at the Japanese Garden on the grounds of the West Los Angeles Veterans Medical Center.
—Written by: Valerie Roop