Fall galas with an arts twist

Come Sat, Aug 20, you can enjoy a special performance of “Hairspray” at Valley Youth Theatre’s 12th annual gala fundraiser, dubbed “The Most VYTal Event of the Season 2011!” It’s being held at the Herberger Theater Center in downtown Phoenix, and proceeds benefit VYT’s education and outreach programs.

The annual gala fundraiser for Copperstar Repertory Company also takes place Sat, Aug 20 — at the Higley Center for the Performing Arts. It features a reception, Broadway theme show and a sneak peek of their coming season. Proceeds benefit education, outreach and mainstage productions.

Arizona Theatre Company’s Gala 2011” celebrates their 45th anniversary. It takes place Sat, Oct 1 in Tucson — and features Academy Award nominee Jevette Steele. Think dinner, dancing and live auction — all to benefit the company’s education and community engagement programs.

The Heard Museum Moondance Gala” takes place Sat, Oct 22 — and features “an intimate concert with country music legends Merle Haggard and Kris Kristofferson.”

Phoenix Art Museum holds “The pARTy, 2011” on Sat, Nov 5. It’s a black tie gala featuring gourmet dining and entertainment — and benefits the museum’s education programs and exhibition schedule.

Come Sat, Dec 3 you can enjoy “ARTRAGEOUS: An Evening of Broadway” to benefit Scottsdale Center for the Performing Arts and Scottsdale Museum of Contemporary Art. The event stars Marvin Hamlisch, Linda Eder and J. Mark McVey.

In the “save the date” department, there are several 2012 galas that look quite lovely too. “Arizona Opera Ball 2012” –which takes place Sat, Feb 11 — features “A Night at the Cabaret” at the Ritz-Carlton in Phoenix. And the Children’s Museum of Phoenix presents their “2012 Fundraising Soiree” — dubbed “Night at the Museum” — on Sat, March 3. I’m told it’ll transport guests to imaginary streets of Paris.

Should someone ask you to help with one of these committees, consider agreeing before any arm twisting is required. Times are tough for arts and culture these days. Not everyone can give money, but gifts of time are also treasured.

— Lynn

Note: Many of these events offer sponsorship and advertising opportunities, or need donations of raffle or auction items. Please keep arts-related causes in mind as your business is considering charitable gifts.

Coming up: Valley acting studios, It’s tea party time!, Going “Glee”

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