The Ravinia's official website says the actors will take part in a salute to the works of George Gershwin on July 15, 2006. Gershwin at Ravinia: Who Could Ask for Anything More? will commemorate the 70th anniversary of Gershwin's only performance at the Chicago theatre in 1936. The benefit evening will include selections from Porgy and Bess as well as Gershwin's famed "Rhapsody in Blue."
Andrew Litton, who will be featured at the piano, will also conduct the orchestra. The one-night-only event will be hosted by Hershey Felder, creator and star of Gershwin Alone.
Brian Stokes Mitchell, who will star in the upcoming City Center Encores! presentation of Kismet, earned a Tony nomination for his performance in the title role of Man of La Mancha. He won the 2000 Tony, Outer Critics Circle and Drama Desk awards for his performance as Fred Graham/Petruchio in Kiss Me, Kate, and his other Broadway credits include lead roles in King Hedley II; Ragtime; Kiss of the Spider Woman; Jelly's Last Jam; Oh, Kay!; Mail; and the City Center Encores! presentations of Do Re Mi and Carnival. Television audiences will be familiar with Mitchell's work from his roles on "Trapper John, M.D.," "Roots" and "Frasier." Mitchell was elected the twelfth president of the Actors' Fund of America, and he made his cabaret debut in February at Feinstein's at the Regency.
A four-time Tony Award winner for her work in A Raisin in the Sun, Master Class, Carousel and Ragtime, Audra McDonald was also seen on Broadway in Henry IV. The singer-actress made her solo Carnegie Hall concert debut in an evening of songs scored for big bands, performing several tunes from her Nonesuch CD "Happy Songs." McDonald's other solo recordings, "Way Back to Paradise" and "How Glory Goes," are also on the Nonesuch label. The acclaimed actress also co-starred in the NBC series "Mister Sterling.”
For more information visit www.ravinia.org. Ticket information will be announced at a later date.