Who: Granada Theatre
What: Celebration of the 2013-14 season
When: Tuesday, Sept. 24
Where: "Top of the G," eighth floor of the Granada Theatre, hosted by Dan and Meg Burnham
The Santa Barbara Center for the Performing Arts Board of Directors welcomed select friends and supporters to the "Top of the G" on the eighth floor of the Granada Theatre on Tuesday night with hosts Dan and Meg Burnham for a celebration of the 2013-14 season.
Guests enjoyed drinks, hors d'oeuvres and the setting sun from atop this historic building, followed by a digital cinema presentation in the McCaw Performance Hall with excerpts from West Side Story, Lawrence of Arabia, Moulin Rouge and Seabiscuit. The cinema system is the first of its kind between Los Angeles and San Francisco and utilizes rear-projection technology that is commonly used in major studio screening rooms for crystalline images on a 36-foot-wide screen.
This unique and special evening closed with an after-party in the McCune Founders Room, where guests enjoyed delectable treats and discussed some of the exciting performances coming to the Granada stage from resident companies and international stars, including Taming of the Shrew, Sinead O'Connor and Falstaff.
Originally opened in 1924, the Granada will also celebrate its 90th anniversary in 2014, with more than 100,000 people attending performances in 2012. The historic theater's mission is to serve as a vibrant venue that promotes the arts and enhances quality of life in the community.
The theater does not receive ongoing support from local or state government and covers only half of its annual budget through ticket sales and other earned income. Giving opportunities for this awe-inspiring facility includes the Visionarios, Luminarios and Alhambra society, as well as Patron and Ovation Circles. Click here for more information.
Sarah and Roger Chrisman lead the digital cinema system with a gift of $100,000, with an additional gift of $100,000 from the Audrey Hillman Fisher Foundation that increases the theaters value and capabilities for the Central Coast.
The theater’s eight resident companies, including CAMA, the Music Academy of the West, Opera Santa Barbara, the Santa Barbara Symphony, the Santa Barbara Choral Society, the State Street Ballet Theater League and UCSB Arts & Lectures.
"What was special about tonight was each season we host a party for all of the resident companies, leaders of the art organizations, their boards, their staff leadership. Because really those resident companies is what makes the activity on the stage actually happen," Granada Theatre Executive Director Craig Springer said. "And so we just think it's a great way for us to demonstrate our support for them in an event where we bring them all of them together and thank them for what they do each year."
Springer has been with the Granada Theatre for three years now having run performing arts centers for 35 years and told Noohzawk, "This is possibly the finest one that I've actually run."
The beauty and quality of the theater not only makes patrons and staff feel special but the companies and performers, too.
"Enthusiasm, excitement, inspiration, vision and a pinch of creativity. This is our home,” said Steven Sharpe, general director of Opera Santa Barbara.
Over the past few years, the community has enjoyed internationally famous soloists, orchestras, operas, dance, esteemed guest speakers and more.
The Granada Theatre Concert Series includes Mannheim Steamroller Christmas on Dec. 5, Dave Koz and Friends Christmas Tour on Dec. 16, I Wish … For All Time: Celebrating the Genius of Michael Jackson and Stevie Wonder on Jan. 5, Kathy Griffin on Feb. 1, Riders in the Sky on Feb. 23, In The Mood: A 1940s Musical Review on March 23 and Bella Gaia on May 10.
Guests can create their own series with the purchase of any four shows and save 10 percent on tickets. Tickets are available through the box office by calling 805.899.2222 or clicking here.
— Noozhawk iSociety columnist Melissa Walker can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow Noozhawk on Twitter: @noozhawk, @NoozhawkSociety, @NoozhawkNews and @NoozhawkBiz. Become a fan of Noozhawk on Facebook.