Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Everyone Footloose!

Last night’s free screening of Footloose brought out more than 2,400 local moviegoers to our community plaza. The evening’s festivities got started with 25 local “dancers” who entered the best ‘80s dance moves contest prior to the film. With the song “Let’s Hear it for the Boy” blasting on the speakers, the dance contestants – some dressed in ‘80s inspired garb – showed off their best stuff. After more bopping and grooving by the participants, the field was narrowed down to five, and then audience applause chose Naomi Rogers from Lake Forest as the grand-prize winner (pictured left). For her hard-won efforts, Naomi received two front-row tickets to Legally Blonde the Musical during its visit to the Center September 8 – 20. Naomi said she couldn’t have been happier with her prize because “the musical is my all-time favorite.” All the dance participants received free tickets to the Orange County Fair.

Free Movie Mondays concludes next week on August 3 with the blockbuster hit Mamma Mia! The pre-performance theme contest will be a trivia contest on the show and the pop group ABBA. The contest will start at 7:30 p.m. and the movie will begin at 8 p.m.

Top row
Left photo (l to r): Zoe Sanglerat and Madison Swain from Newport Beach
Right photo (l to r) Angie Rebman and Irelyn Trepesowsky from Huntington Beach

Middle photo (l to r) Dance contestants Sarah Green from Newport Beach and Amber Frakes from Huntingon Beach
Bottom row
Left photo (l to r) Kris and Christine Neuharth from Irvine
Right photo (l to r) Kelly, Gaby, Ian and Jeff Brooks of Irvine

Friday, July 24, 2009

Changing Lives at the Center

The nationally recognized program Summer at the Center returned this week for its 18th year. Watch the video above to learn about how this inspiring program helps local at-risk and underserved high school students by engaging them in the performing arts.

The program culminates in a one-hour Broadway revue-style production which is performed in Samueli Theater. The public is invited to attend this summer’s free performances on Saturday, August 1 at 12:30, 3:30 and 7:30 p.m. The theme for this year’s Summer at the Center show is “be” as in believe, be creative, be the best and anything else with the word "be." We hope you will attend a performance and celebrate the students’ personal journeys.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Costa Mesa’s Own Little Orphan Annie

Movie Mondays’ pre-performance theme contests, started last year, continued this past Monday with a Little Orphan Annie look-a-like contest prior to the movie’s screening. Taking first place was the adorable Grace Messerschmidt of Cosa Mesa who won four free tickets to the musical Annie when it comes to the Center in January and a gift certificate to Charlie Palmer’s restaurant. Audience applause was used to select the winner. The other contestants included Anna Richmond, Emma Moynihan and Merielle Billyon Palmer, and they took home two tickets to see Annie. (Pictured left to right: Merielle Billyon Palmer and Grace Messerschmidt.)

Next Monday’s showing of Footloose (July 27) starring Kevin Bacon and Lori Singer will feature a contest for the coolest ‘80s dance moves. The stage-to-film adaptation of the blockbuster musical Mamma Mia! (August 3), starring Meryl Streep Pierce Brosnan and Colin Firth, will close out this summer’s Movie Mondays series with a trivia contest with questions about the show and the pop group ABBA. Everyone who participates in these contests will win treats from the Orange County Fair with the top finalists winning tickets to this year’s fair.

Set-up for the movies begins at 5:30 p.m. on the community plaza. The theme contests are open to all moviegoers and start at approximately 7:30 p.m. The movies begin at 8 p.m.

Photos from left to right
1) Jessica Block, Selin Karaogud and Blue Rangel
2) Emma Moynihan
3) Mahenna Lipscomb, Estelle and Chuck Vaughn, Emily Lipscomb, Kristen Farrell, Feather Lipscomb

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Win with Free Movie Mondays

The Center’s popular free Movie Mondays kicked off last week with nearly 3,000 people watching Willy Wonka and the Chocolate Factory on the community plaza. For the showing of Annie this Monday, July 20, there will be a contest for the best Annie look-a-like. Prizes will include tickets to the Orange County Fair, the musical Annie when it visits the Center for its 30th anniversary tour and more goodies.

The contests for the other upcoming movies include: coolest '80s dance moves for Footloose on July 27 and a trivia contest for Mamma Mia! on August 3 with questions about the show and the pop group ABBA. The theme contests are open to all moviegoers and will start at approximately 7:30 p.m.

The Movie Mondays series is held outside on the Center’s 46,000-square-foot community plaza with the films projected on the side of Segerstrom Hall. Guests can bring beach chairs or other seating items. Set-up begins at 5:30 p.m. with the movie starting at dusk (approximately 8 p.m.).

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Kids With a Bang

Eight lucky children from the area were cast to perform in the Center’s engagement of the touring musical, Chitty Chitty Bang Bang. They were selected from a pool of more than 100 who showed up at an open audition last month. The talented ensemble includes: Lucas Blankenhorn from Huntington Beach; Caitlin Cohen from Newport Beach; Mary Desmond from Rancho Santa Margarita; Clair Dwyer from Newport Beach; Tristan Egdorf from Newport Beach; Reagan Kilpatrick from Newbury Park; Audrey Miller from Newbury Park and Anna Pier Salvini from Laguna Beach.

Our flip camera captured the kids rehearsing their dancing and singing with cast member Paige Faure before opening night. Click on the video above to see the kids in action and also watch interviews. Many in the group hope to have careers in the performing arts field so we hope when they make it big, they’ll say they got their start at the Center. Chitty Chitty Bang Bang runs through July 19.

Thursday, July 2, 2009

See the Python Behind Spamalot

Eric Idle will be a guest on the Late, Late Show with Craig Ferguson Monday night (July 6) on CBS. A former member of Monty Python, Idle wrote the book and composed the music and lyrics with John De Prez for the Tony Award-winning Broadway show Monty Python's Spamalot. The show is lovingly ripped off from the comedy troupe’s classic film, Monty Python and the Holy Grail, which tells the tale of King Arthur and his Knights of the Round Table as they embark on their quest for the Holy Grail. The hilarious musical comedy will open the Center’s 2009-2010 Broadways Series October 6 – 18.

Aside from his work with Monty Python in films and on TV, Idle has written numerous plays, novels and songs. He has also sung opera, acted in movies, appeared on television and even crossed America performing comedy. There’s no telling what Idle might do next so be sure to catch him on the Late, Late Show.