August 2021MAIN STORY

North Coast repertory Theater’s Spotlight Gala


By Deborah Vietor

Join the North Coast Repertory Theatre to celebrate the beginning of life with the Spotlight Gala! Sunday, August 29, the theater community will come together at the Fairmont Grand Del Mar, beginning at 5 p.m. with cocktails and a silent auction followed with wine, fine cuisine, and an elegant plated seated dinner served in the ballroom at 6:30 p.m.

Auctioneer Clint Bell will conduct the live auction and fund-a-need segment. Some elements include an evening with Richard Dreyfuss and a doll house signed by Dr. Ruth and Tovah Feldshuh and a live session with Dr. Ruth. There will be a cork pull as well. Artistic Director David Ellenstein will serve as Master of Ceremonies during the event.

The dedicated and passionate volunteer committee, led by Chair Laura Applegate and Sarah King are preparing a festive evening for 350 guests.

Honorary Chairs for the Gala include Academy Award winning actor Richard Dreyfuss, and wife Svetlana, longtime supporters of the North Coast Rep Theatre.

Entitled “The Lights Are Bright at North Coast Rep,” who will join the fun?

Featuring show tunes from Gypsy, Cabaret, Sweet Charity and Forum, guests will be delighted to dance in their seats with this evening of musical comedy, with a 4-piece band and 5 local actors. A performance by the Theatre School will be included as well.

Surprises illuminate the evening, joining guests for a magical evening through the North Coast Rep. The event’s fundraiser is another way to raise philanthropic revenue. Through the generosity of table sponsors, auction bidders & event sponsors, North Coast Rep raises over one third of their total annual budget for donated income at this event.

Dreyfuss’s observations on the impact of the theater are viewed through the looking glass of an actor. “Most people don’t realize that when you do a comedy and you make people laugh, you are doing what is known in Judaism as a mitzvah – it’s a gift. It means you can find that people laugh so hard it looks like they haven’t laughed in a hundred years, and you know you’ve lifted something painful off their shoulders.”

Svetlana illustrated her enthusiasm by proclaiming, “It’s our favorite theatre. They do remarkable work! At it’s purest, theatre, like religion, answers questions you didn’t know you had. The plays at North Coast Rep open your eyes to new worlds, exposes you to new experiences, and makes you think. We are happy to do anything we can to support them. They’re just terrific!”

An American actor and writer, Dreyfuss achieved an Academy Award for Best Actor in a Leading Role for The Goodbye Girl, (the youngest actor ever at the age of 30 to win.) He was also awarded a BAFTA, Golden Globe Award and countless others. His starring roles include: American Graffiti, Jaws, What About Bob?, Stand By Me, and Mr. Holland’s Opus, (nominated for an Academy Award in 1995.) Dreyfuss has performed multiple outstanding roles over the years.

Jay and Julie Sarno will be presented with San Diego’s Champion for the Arts Award, a community-wide effort honoring individuals who have made a difference in the arts. This honor is bestowed to individuals giving an extraordinary measure of their time, talents and treasure to benefit the visual and performing arts in the greater San Diego region. With a passion for North Coast Rep, Julie was the former Director of Development and Jay currently (a Board Member) dedicates time and energy during the week, assisting in many ways. The Sarno’s met at the North Coast Rep, marrying there 34 years ago!

Nancy Richards, director of marketing and public relations mentioned North Coast Rep was the only theater open with live streaming for a full season during these trying times of the pandemic. Richards has brought her creative expertise, dedication and resilience to the North Coast Rep for several years.

North Coast Rep announced Season 40, for 2021/2022, celebrating the resiliency of the human spirit, with the first live show previewing on September 8. The lineup includes Dancing Lessons, Ben Butler, Desperate Measures, The Homecoming, Forbidden Broadway’s Greatest Hits, The Outgoing Tide, and The Remarkable Mr. Holmes.

Subscribers save money with the best seats in the house and enjoy the benefits of unlimited exchanges!

North Coast Repertory Theater is located at 987 Lomas Santa Fe, Suite D, Solana Beach, 92075. For more information regarding the Spotlight Gala, contact Denise Young, (858) 481-2155 ext. 210, or For upcoming show tickets, Contact the Box Office: (858) 481-1055 or online at


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