One-Starry-Night-at-Pasadena-Playhouse Over three dozen performers joined forces and raised voices at the Pasadena Playhouse on Monday, January 13, 2014, as Juliana Hansen and Jonathan White presented One Starry Night, Hollywood Coming Together To Fight ALS, benefiting the ALA Association Golden West Chapter.

With writer/director Bruce Kimmel assuredly in charge and musical director Richard Allen conducting a sensational onstage orchestra, a packed house was treated to some splendid vocalizing with a bit of magic and stand-up thrown in for good measure.

One terrific solo performer after another followed Monk and The Office’s Melora Hardin’s advice to “Raise The Roof”  in song. Canada’s Reagan Pasternak (“Somewhere That’s Green”), Tony-winner Daisy Eagan (“You’d Be Surprised”), John Sloman (“Help Is On The Way”), Ilene “Mr. Belvedere” Graff (“Porgy And Bess Medley”), teen idol-turned adult triple-threat Rex Smith (“This Is The Moment”), Jean Louisa Kelly of Yes, Dear (“Defying Gravity,” “What I Did For Love”), Broadway’s Kerry O’Malley (“I Had A Ball”), Monkee extraordinaire Mickey Dolnez (“I’m A Believer”), Dreamgirls’ Tony-nominated Obba Babatundé (“Bluesette”), power-piped Ruthless! star Joan Ryan (“On A Clear Day”), and co-producer Hansen of Grease: You’re the One That I Want! (“Gimme Gimme”) each received considerable applause, with Best Of Show honors going to grand dame Terri White (“Being Alive”) and the evening’s youngest solo star, the exquisite Jenna Lea Rosen (“Disneyland”).

Harmonizing in groups were Susanne “Forbidden Broadway” Blakeslee, Musical Theatre Guild treasure Marsha Kramer, and Lisa “Wicked” Livesay bending genders with “Fugue For Tinhorns”; Drama Desk Award nominee James “A Tale Of Two Cities” Barbour and L.A. favorite James C. Mulligan (“Agony”); Devin Kelly and Dennis Kyle (“I Like Your Style”);  and petite charmers Brook Besikof, Brennley Brown, Oliviana Marie, Hadley Belle Miller, and Skylar Rose in Boylan Sisters mode with “You’re Never Fully Dressed Without A Smile,” and scene-stealingly hilarious Hairspray couple Bruce Villanch and Barry Pearl as Edna and Wilbur Turnblad with “Timeless To Me.”

Mystifying feats were performed by Crow Garrett, Gary Morgan and the Flying Morgans, and Jonathan Pendragon, while comedian Jason Collings nailed every single one of his one-liners in the evening’s most laugh-packed segment.

Adding their spoken voices to support the fight against ALS were Dallas icon Charlene Tilton and veteran Young And The Restless player Kate “Esther Valentine” Linder, national spokesperson for The ALS Association.

The night’s most unforgettable moment belonged to Disney legend Richard M. Sherman on piano performing “Feed The Birds” (with Hansen on vocals) and an appearance by Disney heir Roy to present Sherman with the first annual One Starry Night Award. (A bit of Richard Sherman memorabilia earned extra bucks for ALS under the auctioneering of a fleet-tongued Pearl.)

Hilda Kane directed the evening’s lighting with conservable flair, with Josh Benton, Eric Thompson, and J.P Van Hulle in charge of sound. Orchestrations were by musical director Allen. Tom Griep was assistant musical director. Brian L’Ecuyer was production stage manager and Patty Ramsey assistant stage manager.

–Steven Stanley
January 13, 2014