Dinklage, Bernstein, Rabe for Public Theater: Scene

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Photographer: Amanda Gordon/Bloomberg

Actor Peter Dinklage and his wife, theater director Erica Schmidt, greet guest Valerie Lemon, a singer and actress with a one-woman show about Marvin Hamlisch, sitting next to Hamlish's widow, Terre Blair Hamlisch.

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Photographer: Amanda Gordon/Bloomberg

Actor Peter Dinklage and his wife, theater director Erica Schmidt, greet guest Valerie Lemon, a singer and actress with a one-woman show about Marvin Hamlisch, sitting next to Hamlish's widow, Terre Blair Hamlisch. Close

Actor Peter Dinklage and his wife, theater director Erica Schmidt, greet guest Valerie Lemon, a singer and actress... Read More

Photographer: Amanda Gordon/Bloomberg

Mandy Hackett, associate artistic director at the Public Theater, Arielle Tepper Madover, chairman of the Public, and her husband Kieran Jason Hackett, chief marketing officer at New York Cruise Lines. Close

Mandy Hackett, associate artistic director at the Public Theater, Arielle Tepper Madover, chairman of the Public, and... Read More

Photographer: Amanda Gordon/Bloomberg

Courtney Love in Issa and Mark Subias, head of the theater department at United Talent Agency. Close

Courtney Love in Issa and Mark Subias, head of the theater department at United Talent Agency.

Photographer: Amanda Gordon/Bloomberg

Len Tessler, senior managing director at Cerberus Capital Management LP, and John Lambros, managingn director at GCA Savvian Advisors LLC. Close

Len Tessler, senior managing director at Cerberus Capital Management LP, and John Lambros, managingn director at GCA... Read More

Photographer: Amanda Gordon/Bloomberg

David Geffen and Daryl Roth. Close

David Geffen and Daryl Roth.

Photographer: Amanda Gordon/Bloomberg

Uzo Aduba, an actress in "Orange is the New Black." Close

Uzo Aduba, an actress in "Orange is the New Black."

Photographer: Joan Marcus via Bloomberg

Zachary Quinto performing Paul's Monologue from "A Chorus Line." Close

Zachary Quinto performing Paul's Monologue from "A Chorus Line."

Photographer: Amanda Gordon/Bloomberg

Sarah, Tanya and Vimbai Masiyiwa, daughters of Strive Masiyiwa, founder of Econet Wireless. Close

Sarah, Tanya and Vimbai Masiyiwa, daughters of Strive Masiyiwa, founder of Econet Wireless.

Photographer: Amanda Gordon/Bloomberg

Lily Rabe and Hamish Linklater, currently in "Much Ado About Nothing" at Shakespeare in the Park. Close

Lily Rabe and Hamish Linklater, currently in "Much Ado About Nothing" at Shakespeare in the Park.

Photographer: Amanda Gordon/Bloomberg

Fran Kranz and Pedro Pascal, in a John Varvatos vest, met starring as enemies in the horror comedy film "Bloodsucking Bastards." Close

Fran Kranz and Pedro Pascal, in a John Varvatos vest, met starring as enemies in the horror comedy film "Bloodsucking Bastards."

Photographer: Amanda Gordon/Bloomberg

Curtain call for the Public Theater's "One Thrilling Combination" gala event celebrating composer Marvin Hamlisch, the Public Theater and the creation of "A Chorus Line." The cast included representatives of the Public Works Community Ensemble and studentse of the Ballet Tech School. Close

Curtain call for the Public Theater's "One Thrilling Combination" gala event celebrating composer Marvin Hamlisch,... Read More

Theater producer Arielle Tepper Madover arrived for the Public Theater’s annual gala wearing a white tulle dress by Viktor & Rolf and a jumbo heart-shaped Lanvin ring.

The event in Central Park, in celebration of Marvin Hamlisch and the creation of “A Chorus Line,” was “a unique night,” said Madover, who became the chairman of the Public last year, following Warren Spector and Ken Lerer.

The timing didn’t hurt.

“It’s very nice being a week or two after the Tony awards,” said Madover, whose “Cripple of Inishmaan” received several nominations. “We’ve finished the season, we’re now into the summer and we can sort of relax and be free and have a breather before we think about fall shows.”

It wasn’t exactly a breather. The gala was a long, intense tribute with more than 100 people doffing hats and kicking legs for “One,” including 17 cast members from the original production of “A Chorus Line.”

Almost all the musical numbers were included, which is maybe why the non-musical turn of Zachary Quinto doing Paul’s Monologue was the most arresting scene of the night.

For laughs, Jane Lynch helped Jesse Tyler Ferguson “Sing” and Emily Bergl examined some of the plastic surgery in the audience while performing “Dance: 10, Looks: 3.”

It was “Dinner: 8, Looks: 9” for the first part of the gala on a sunshine-dappled lawn outside the Delacorte Theater, home to the Public’s Shakespeare in the Park.

Union Square

Artichoke and fava bean salad with savory granola came courtesy of Union Square Events. Gala co-chairman Renee Beaumont of Providence Equity Partners was there, as was David Geffen, in a Beats baseball cap sitting with producer Daryl Roth. Other attendees included Alexandra Kaufmann of Pershing Square Capital Management, actor Josh Charles, and Len Tessler of Cerberus Capital Management.

Courtney Love, clad in a navy Issa dress, chatted with manager Mark Subias, playwright Suzan-Lori Parks and composer Jeanine Tesori. Gerald Hathaway, Anne Hathaway’s dad who’s a partner at Mitchell Silberberg & Knupp and does pro bono labor-law work for the Public, spotted Peter Dinklage, who played Richard III at the Public 10 years ago.

Dinklage posed for selfies with guests as did fellow “Game of Thrones” star Pedro Pascal, who’s in the current production of “Much Ado About Nothing.”

Chelsea Piers

Uzo Aduba, who plays Crazy Eyes in “Orange is the New Black,” sat with Connie Verducci of Bank of America, who’d spent the day touring some of the new education spaces at Carnegie Hall, where Bank of America is a sponsor. The bank is the season sponsor of Shakespeare in the Park through 2016.

As for the chorus line: Jeffrey Kim, a trading assistant at Select Equity Group, recalled singing “One” in the sixth grade, though he didn’t execute any high kicks.

Tom Bernstein, president of Chelsea Piers, said he saw the original production of “A Chorus Line” at the Public in 1975, a year after he’d graduated college.

Bernstein had spent the day in Atlanta for the opening of the National Center for Civil and Human Rights, where former Public artistic director George C. Wolfe has designed exhibitions focused on storytelling. With him were the daughters of Strive Masiyiwa, chairman and founder of Econet Wireless, including Vimbai, who said she’s studying information systems in college and rooting for Brazil and Ghana in the World Cup.

Ivy League

One Bernstein not present was Sam, who graduated from Yale last month as a two-time Ivy League Golf Player of the Year. His excuse: he was playing the Ike, the Metropolitan Golf Association’s Stroke Play Championship, which he led after the first round.

Joshua Bell confessed he asked “Chorus Line” composer Marvin Hamlisch to perform with him on an album so they might become friends. (Hamlisch’s wife, Terre, confirmed it had worked.) Donna McKechnie, the original Cassie in the show about a group of dancers auditioning, spoke, as did several members of the original creative team.

The show’s history helps explain the loving nature of the tribute. Michael Bennett developed “A Chorus Line” at the Public starting without script or score, or much of a budget. Time was the ultimate gift that Joe Papp, the Public’s founder, bestowed, according to the testimonials. It was a good investment: the show became a hit, and a cash cow for the nonprofit theater.

America’s Heart

Oskar Eustis, the Public’s artistic director, said the production “touched the heart of America” because “it was a musical about working people who wanted a job” at a time when “times were tough.”

Actor Fran Kranz said he played Zach, the director in “A Chorus Line,” in college. (Brian Stokes Mitchell had the role last night.)

“I like to sing and dance, so what was hard was watching them do it. I felt envious,” said Kranz, adding that he’d love to be cast in Shakespeare in the Park. His resume includes playing Claudio in Joss Whedon’s “Much Ado About Nothing.”

“It’s an elite and desirable job, more so than Broadway,” he said.

“It’s the greatest place to work on earth,” Lily Rabe, on a night off from “Much Ado,” said to guests before top hats were passed for donations.

“She’s a good actress, but she’s not that good,” added her co-star and partner off stage, Hamish Linklater. “She really means it.”

The gala’s total haul: $2.2 million.

To contact the reporter on this story: Amanda Gordon in New York at agordon01@bloomberg.net

To contact the editors responsible for this story: Christine Harper at charper@bloomberg.net Peter Newcomb

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