Summer Circle Courtyard Project
(East Lansing, MI) – WLNS/6 morning news anchor Evan Pinsonnault, also known to local theatre audiences as an actor who has appeared in numerous community theatre performances, will emcee “Setting the Stage,” the kickoff event for the Summer Circle Courtyard Project sponsored by MSU Friends of Theatre.
The event will take place Wednesday, May 7 at MSU’s Fairchild Theatre from 6-9 p.m. Tickets are $40 and include dinner with wine, a preview of the upcoming Summer Circle season and a silent auction. One of the big silent auction items is a two-night stay at the Grand Hotel on Mackinac Island. Food for the event will be catered by Grand Grillin’, voted as Lansing’s Favorite Food Truck in a FOX/47 news poll and appearing on Food Network’s “Food Court Wars” on May 25, 2014. Reservations are now being taken for the event at (517) 355-6691and online at theatre.msu.edu.
All proceeds from the event will go toward the construction of the Summer Circle Courtyard, the new permanent home of the MSU Department of Theatre’s free summer festival. This year’s festival includes five shows, including a children’s production, a musical and others suited for the family.
Pinsonnault most recently starred as Paul Sevigne, the bumbling inspector in Riverwalk Theatre’s “A Shot in the Dark.” He also is host of the “Evan Michael Show,” which appears periodically on local television channels. The program highlights the region’s vibrant arts scene.
“We’re thrilled that Evan Pinsonnault will be joining us at Setting the Stage,” says event chair Chris Knapp. “He also served as last year’s emcee and we received many favorable comments from guests after the gala about his participation. We appreciate his support as we begin this venture is a tremendous boost and we appreciate his sharing his time with us in this way.”
Now in its 54th year, Summer Circle provides free productions throughout the month of June, allowing community theatre fans an outdoor venue for performance.
“The Courtyard Project is funded completely by the community, with the Friends of Theatre committing to raise $100,000 of the total cost through personal donations and through special events such as this one,” says Jacqie Babcock, president of Friends of Theatre. The organization is dedicated to supporting the Michigan State University Department of Theatre in general and Summer Circle in particular.
“We know the community enjoys the free productions each year at Summer Circle,” adds Babock. “Supporting the Courtyard Project by attending the gala or joining other generous donors who are acting as sponsors or donating silent auction items will help all our patrons have a more enjoyable theatrical experience when the Courtyard opens.”
Those wishing to support the event through sponsorship or silent auction donation, as well as reserving tickets, may contact Dionne O’Dell at (517) 355-6691.
The Courtyard will be located between Fairchild Theatre and the Kresge Art Center on the MSU campus and will seat over 400 with adequate room for portable lawn chairs and picnickers. Unlike the recent Summer Circle location on the banks of the Red Cedar, the area will be more easily accessible to handicapped patrons and because it is off the flood plain, more comfortable following a rain. In addition, because it is farther from the water, it is possible that fewer mosquitoes will be part of the theatre experience..
Additional events are planned by the Friends of Theatre to help raise funds for the Courtyard, including a wine tasting at Burgdorf’s Winery in late May.