Lookingglass Theater Celebrates 30 years
The electricity of the night was remarkable as guests poured into Lookingglass Theater Company’s 30th-anniversary gala. The elegant celebration entitled Gglassquerade “Under the Seas: Reflecting on 30 Years”, welcomed some of the city’s finest artists, social leaders, and patrons to the Four Seasons with a grand entrance complete with outstretched tentacle arms beckoning guests into the posh event. The star-studded celebration was abuzz with anticipation for the evening’s ceremony hosted by Lookingglass Ensemble Member David Schwimmer – who did not disappoint.
The event was a monumental success, raising over $1,100,000 for the highly acclaimed organization. All fundraising efforts from the event will support Lookingglass in its mission to continue to create and develop new groundbreaking theatrical works, in addition to engaging underserved youth in the Chicago area with their Education and Community Programs.
The evening began as guests, donned in stunning formal attire, mingled with cocktails and placed bids on lavish silent auction items. Following the grand reception, guests were welcomed into the dining room to enjoy an elegant seated dinner and award ceremony celebrating 30 years of creating professional ensemble-based theater, and those who have made it possible.
The ceremony’s distinguished host, famed actor David Schwimmer, dazzled guests with his fierce wit and charming humor while inviting the audience to join him in celebrating the company’s accomplishments and this year’s award recipients.
The ceremony recognized three honorees with the Lookingglass Civic Engagement Award, which was presented to Barbara Bradford and Robert Sherman, prominent Chicago philanthropists, and former Lookingglass Executive Director Rachel E. Kraft. Previous recipients of the award include artists and philanthropists such as Joan and Paul Rubschlager, Theaster Gates, Rick Bayless, Ira Glass, and Stephen Colbert – the latter of which greeted the audience with a video presentation congratulating the company for its 30 years of success.
A beautiful presentation by Artistic Director Heidi Stillman and Lookingglass Ensemble Members moved gala goers with their reflections on the early days of the theater company as well as its expansion and evolution over the past 30 years.
Following the heartfelt presentation, guests participated in a spirited live auction which proceeded dancing to live music presented by Dr. Bombay, one of Chicago’s premier live band experiences.
Some of the evening’s top auction items included a trip to Ecuador with cruises to the Galapagos and on the Amazon river provided by Pro Ecuador and United Airlines, as well as a trip to London to see Harry Potter and the Cursed Child, parts 1 and 2 provided by the Ambassador Theatre Group and Hyatt Regency London, and diamond drop earrings with 30 diamonds totaling 3.16 carats provided by A. Marek Fine Jewelry.
It was a monumental celebration and an unforgettable night for Lookingglass Theater Company. Congratulations for 30 years of artistic excellence to the company’s creators, leaders and the artists whose voices are brought to light through its work. I am certain this is just one milestone in what will surely be a long path ahead creating groundbreaking and culturally important works of art.
About Lookingglass Theater Company:
Lookingglass Theatre Company continues to expand its artistic, financial and institutional boundaries under the guidance of Artistic Director Heidi Stillman, Executive Director Rachel L. Fink, Producing Director Philip R. Smith, Connectivity and Engagement Director Andrew White, Interim Managing Director Michele Anderson, a 24-member artistic ensemble, 23 artistic associates, an administrative staff and a dedicated board of directors led by Chairman John McGowan and President Nancy Timmers. For more information, please visit lookingglasstheatre.org.