A host of performers have joined the ranks of those saluting the music of Richard Rodgers during the November Actors' Fund of America benefit in Los Angeles.
To date, those taking part in the Nov. 9 (8 PM) and 10 (3 PM) concerts — Something Wonderful: The Richard Rodgers Centennial — include Ian Abercrombie, Loni Anderson, Christine Andreas, Theodore Bikel, Carole Cook, Tyne Daly, Nancy Dussault, Mitzi Gaynor, Estelle Harris, Gregory Harrison, Marilu Henner, Michael Jeter, Jane A. Johnston, Dale Kristien, Lorenzo Lamas, sign-language interpreter Jon Maher, Karen Mason, Marilynn Lovell Matz, Rod McKuen, Rita Moreno, Patricia Morrison, Pamela Myers, Jack Noseworthy, Hugh Panaro, Valarie Pettiford, Stefanie Powers, John Raitt, Alice Ripley, Honey Sanders and Lesley Ann Warren. Gordon Davidson will be honored with the Nedda Harrigan Logan Award at the event, which boasts Mary Rodgers and Julie Rodgers as Honorary Chairpersons. David Galligan will direct with musical direction by Gerald Sternbach.
During his lifetime, Richard Rodgers penned over 900 songs. His partnerships with Lorenz Hart and later with Oscar Hammerstein II produced some of the most successful musicals in Broadway history. His works with Hart included On Your Toes, Babes in Arms, I Married an Angel, The Boys from Syracuse, Pal Joey and By Jupiter, and the Rodgers-Hammerstein collaboration spawned Oklahoma!, Carousel, South Pacific, The King and I, Flower Drum Song and The Sound of Music. The hit revival of Oklahoma! currently plays Broadway's Gershwin Theatre, and Flower Drum Song recently opened at the Virginia.
Something Wonderful will be held in the Luckman Fine Arts Complex at Los Angeles' Cal State. Tickets, priced between $50 and $250, are available by calling (323) 933-9266, ext. 54 or by e-mailing firstname.lastname@example.org. The Actors' Fund of America, a nonprofit organization founded in 1882, provides for the social welfare of all entertainment professionals. Its headquarters and The Aurora Residence are located in New York City, and its nursing home and assisted living care facility are in Englewood, New Jersey.
—By Andrew Gans