Philanthropist and longtime arts supporter Rao Makineni has donated $1.2 million to the Pasadena Playhouse. It is the largest gift in the theatre's 83-year history. Makineni made the contribution to encourage the local community to support the Playhouse's ongoing operations, including expanding outreach and educational programming.
In addition to his $1 million pledge, Makineni also donated $200,000 previously loaned to the theatre. The generous contribuitions came to fruition through the efforts of Ralph Hirschmann, a member of the Pasadena Playhouse board of directors and long-time friend of Makineni.
Makineni has been a long-time philanthropist with a passion for introducing young people to the arts. In his youth, he walked by the Playhouse every day on his way to work and soon fell in love with the cultural landmark. He said that he found the long and illustrious history of the Playhouse appealing and, in particular, its new student outreach program.
The donation is a challenge gift which will double, dollar for dollar up to $1 million, any donation made to the Playhouse.
For more information on donation opportunities, contact Lyla White at (626) 792-8672, ext. 208, or write to the Pasadena Playhouse at 80 S. Lake Ave. Suite 500, Pasadena, CA 91101. -- By Willard Manus
Southern California Correspondent