A host of artists will attend the evening in Rockwell's honor, including Streep, Baldwin and Close as well as Cynthia Nixon, Sam Rockwell, Kathleen Turner, Neil Patrick Harris, Jane Krakowski, Julianna Margulies, Nora Ephron and S. Epatha Merkerson. Additional names will be added in the coming weeks.
The 2008 Summer Gala commences at 5:30 PM with a buffet dinner in Central Park, followed by the 8 PM opening-night performance of the Shakespeare in the Park Hamlet — starring Michael Stuhlbarg and Sam Waterston — and will conclude with a cast party at Belvedere Castle overlooking Turtle Pond and the Delacorte.
Rockwell currently serves on the board for the Public and has been involved with the downtown theatrical institution for 20 years
In response to the honor, Rockwell commented in a statement, "The Public Theater produces Shakespeare with no admission charge (a miracle unto itself!). It bustles with new actors and new scripts. It works ceaselessly to build a large, diverse audience of first-time theatergoers. It is a people's theatre in the very best sense of the word, and I am exceptionally proud of my association with it."
Rockwell's designs for Broadway include Legally Blonde, All Shook Up, Dirty Rotten Scoundrels, Hairspray, The Rocky Horror Show and the forthcoming David Yazbek musical Houdini. Rockwell is the CEO and founder of Rockwell Group, an award-winning architecture and design firm. He was also awarded the Presidential Design Award for his work for the Grand Central Terminal renovation. Tickets and sponsorships, ranging $750-$50,000, are available by phoning (212) 539-8547 or by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org.
For further information visit www.publictheater.org.