THE GRANDES DAMES


 






 







 



 



 




 

 



 

 


 


 




 

 

 

Fashion Happenings & Tea

The Grandes Dames of Rubicon Theatre Company are delighted to present a light afternoon tea served by La Dolce Vita restaurant with a lovely fashion show hosted by Follow Your Heart and Sixteen. Please dress appropriately as this is an outdoor event, and be sure to wear a fabulous hat for a chance to win a prize.

When & Where

Wednesday, June 29 2-4pm at Heritage Square, 715 South A Street, Oxnard

Reservations

$40 Per Person & Reservations Required by June 22

 

Contact
Amber Landis (805) 667-2912 ext. 237, alandis@rubicontheatre.org

 


"No one has ever become poor by giving." - Anne Frank

.and Rubicon has become quite rich in the generosity of its beloved Grandes Dames. The Grandes Dames is Rubicon's 300 member auxiliary group which supports the activities of non-profit Rubicon Theatre Company through service and fundraising. Founded in 1999 by Rubicon patrons NancyGregory, Sandra Laby, Rosa Lee Measures, Barbara Meister and Dottie Novatt, the group is now governed by an active volunteer Board of Directors who meet monthly under the direction of President Penny Barnds.

Joining the Grandes Dames is a wonderful way to meet fellow theatre lovers and be the first to hear about upcoming productions and backstage news. Men are always welcome! Our Grandes Dames help by providing actor meals, ushering, being part of mailing teams, putting up posters, passing out post cards, working in the box office, helping arrange luncheons, assisting with fundraising for Rubicon and numerous other fundamental theatre functions. Grandes Dames receive preference in their chosen volunteer areas, and have their own luncheons where they are entertained by our talented performers.

Grande Dames Luncheons in the past have featured performances by Rubicon favorites like Linda Purl and Stephanie Zimbalist as well as Broadway stars from Wicked, Les Miserables, Into the Woods, Cats, Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat and many more.

Luncheons for 2008 are scheduled for Monday, January 14th at 11:30 am, Tuesday, April 29th at 11:30 am, and Tuesday, June 10th at 11:30 am.

Grandes Dames Annual membership dues are only $40.

To join please contact Development Associate Amber Landis at 805.667.2900 ext.239

 

Holiday Lunch and Boutique

No, it doesn't seem possible, but the holiday season is fast approaching. Wouldn't it be nice to get your gift shopping started early, so that you can cross at least one task off your lengthy to-do list?

The Grandes Dames - Rubicon Theatre Company's amazing and invaluable support group - are offering just such an opportunity. You are cordially invited to their annual Holiday Luncheon and Boutique, which will take place Nov. 13th at Courtyard by Marriott, 600 E. Esplanade Drive in Oxnard.

It's a chance to not only do some early shopping, but also to have a delicious meal, enjoy some wonderful music - and support Rubicon Theatre Company.

Beginning at 10 a.m., a variety of lovely gift items will be on sale, including jewelry, clothing, handicrafts, fine wine and gourmet teas. The luncheon starts at 11:30, followed by a performance by the amazing Daniel Tatar (see below) and more chances to shop.

The $35 cost for Grandes Dames, $45 for general public includes lunch (for the main course, you can choose between chicken piccata or vegetarian lasagna), entertainment, tax and tip. Reservations must be made no later than Wednesday, Nov. 7.

To reserve a spot, call Amber Landis at (805) 667-2912, ext. 239.

Or simply mail your check to:
Amber at Rubicon Theatre Company, 1006 E. Main St., Ventura 93001.

Direct from Pasadena Playhouse

Daniel Tatar, a co-star of the Pasadena Playhouse's world premiere musical Ray Charles Live, will serenade the guests at the Grandes Dames Nov. 13th Holiday Luncheon and Boutique. Tatar plays Ahmet Ertegun, co-founder of Atlantic Records, in the new stage biography of the legendary singer, which runs Oct. 31 through Dec. 9 at the historic theatre.

A guest star on the hit television series "Gray's Anatomy," Tatar has received critical acclaim for his many theatrical performances, including The Last Five Years at the Pasadena Playhouse and Baby at UCLA's Freud Theatre (part of the Reprise series). Critics have called him "charismatic ... likeable and charming ... dark-haired and adorable with a powerhouse tenor voice ... an actor who can sing and a singer who can act."

You can check him out at his website, www.danieltatar.com.
Or, better yet, experience him in person Nov. 14th.  



*****************   THE JEWEL CLUB  *****************

Go Behind-the-Scenes as a Gold Coin or Jewel Club Member!

Rubicon's special VIP Membership program gives special benefits to the theatre's devoted benefactors. As a Gold Coin or Jewel Club member, you share once-in-a-lifetime experiences, receive discounts on season tickets (depending on the level) and enjoy an exclusive Gold Coin or Jewel Club Hotline. Your three-year membership helps Rubicon plan for future programs, assists in the long-term stability of the company and ensures the continued level of outstanding artist and production values you expect. Three Jewel Club membership levels are offered - Diamond, Emerald and Ruby, and Rubicon has recently introduced the "All Access" pass to everything Rubicon, the Gold Coin Club.

To decide which Jewel Club Level is right for you, please contact
Amber Landis at (805) 667-2912 ext. 239.

For more information about the Gold Coin Club, call
Mychele Dee at (805) 667-2912 ext. 237.

GOLD COIN CLUB
($10,000 a year for three years)

Members Receive -

  • "The All-Inclusive Membership Level"
    Access for yourself and a guest to:

    VIP Opening Night Subscription
    or alternate series of your choice
    Tower Club Broadway Cabaret Series (past artists saluted have included Jason Robert Brown, Stephen Schwartz, Richard Maltby Jr. and David Shire)
    Exclusive Invitations to Directors’ Previews with desserts and coffee in private homes
    Day Trips Tied to Themes of the Shows
    Single-Day Excursions to shows and seminars in Los Angeles
    Plus:
    Custom Gold Coin Pin with Four Diamonds created by Lynn’s Jewelry Studio
    Program Listing at the Gold Coin Level
    Access to Additional “House Seats” for Your Special Guests with 72 hours notice (subject to availability)
    Cast-Signed Posters of Every Show
    Complimentary Concessions (just show your Gold Coin pin)

 

DIAMOND LEVEL
($5,000 a year for three years)

  • Gold Jewel Club Pin with a Diamond Inset designed by Lynn’s Jewelry Studio
    75% Discount on Four Season Subscriptions (VIP seating and highest priority for upgrades)
    Gift Voucher for Two Tickets to Any Two Shows
    Access to Purchase Additional “House Seats” for Your Special Guests with 72 hours notice (subject to availability)
    Exclusive Invitations to Directors’ Previews with desserts and coffee in private homes
    “Table Read” and Designer Presentations
    Advance Invitations to purchase day trips tied to themes of the shows
    Twelve Complimentary Concession Vouchers
    Program Listing at the Diamond Level

 

EMERALD LEVEL
($2,500 a year for three years)

  • Silver Jewel Club Pin with a Emerald Inset designed by Lynn’s Jewelry Studio
    50% Discount on Two Season Subscriptions (VIP seating and highest priority for upgrades)
    Gift Voucher for Two Tickets to Any One Show
    Exclusive Invitations to Directors’ Previews with desserts and coffee in private homes
    “Table Read” and Designer Presentations
    Advance Invitations to purchase day trips tied to themes of the shows
    Six Complimentary Concession Vouchers
    Program Listing at the Emerald Level

 

RUBY LEVEL
($1,000 a year for three years)

  • Silver Jewel Club Pin with a Ruby Inset designed by Lynn’s Jewelry Studio
    VIP Seating with your purchased subscription
    Exclusive Invitations to Directors’ Previews with desserts and coffee in private homes
    “Table Read” and Designer Presentations
    Advance Invitations to purchase day trips tied to themes of the shows
    Two Complimentary Concession Vouchers
    Program Listing at the Ruby Level

 

 

2011 - Luncheon Information

The Grandes Dames February Luncheon
Tuesday, February 8 at Saticoy Country Club
11:00 a.m. Registration
11:30 a.m. Lunch

SPECIAL PERFORMANCE by AMANDA McBROOM and GEORGE BALL
Join us for a fun-filled afternoon with great food and entertainment! Rubicon favorites AMANDA McBROOM (The Rose, Jacques Brel is Alive and Well and Living in Paris) and GEORGE BALL (Rubicon's All My Sons and Man of La Mancha) will serenade us with love songs. And get a behind-the-scenes look at "MASTER HAROLD"...and the Boys with director Brian McDonald.

Cost: $35 for Grandes Dames Members and Guests
Price includes gourmet 3-course luncheon—butternut squash soup, poached pear salad with or without grilled chicken, and a decadent chocolate dessert, non-alcoholic beverage, tax, tip and entertainment.

For Reservations
Limited seating. Please call 805.667.2912, Ext. 237.

Mission

The mission of the Grandes Dames is to support the activities of Rubicon Theatre Company through volunteerism and fund raising.

 

 

GRANDES DAMES: HOLIDAY BOUTIQUE & LUNCHEON
Tickets on sale for the November 18th luncheon featuring Broadway star James Barbour.

Grandes Dames Luncheon
November 23, 2010


Grandes Dames Luncheon & Holiday Boutique

Tuesday, November 23, 2010
Courtyard by Marriott
600 E. Esplanade Drive, Oxnard, CA 93036
10:00 am: Check-In and Boutique Shopping
11:30am: Luncheon & Entertainment begin
Menu: Chicken Parmigiana or Vegetable Lasagna

Join the Grandes Dames for fun holiday shopping, food and entertainment! 10% of all boutique sales will go to support Rubicon. Our wonderful entertainment features James Barbour, Broadway Star: The Beast in Beauty and the Beast, Edward Rochester in Jane Eyre and Billy Bigelow in Carousel! You will not want to miss the fun and the festivities!

For more information or to make a reservation, call Amber Landis at 805.667.2912 ext. 237.

 

2010 - Luncheon Information

The Grandes Dames Valentine’s Luncheon
Monday, February 15 at The Tower Club
11:00 a.m. Registration
11:30 a.m. Lunch

SPECIAL PERFORMANCE BY DAVIS GAINES
"Best-known as the star of the Broadway and LA companies of Phantom of the Opera, Davis Gaines sings holiday love songs and the cast and director of Trying give you a preview of our upcoming show. For this special luncheon (which takes place on President's Day—a holiday for most businesses) any Grandes Dames who brings their spouse or a friend gets entered into a drawing for gift certificates.


Cost: $35 for Grandes Dames Members and Guests
Price includes gourmet 3-course luncheon (including Tower Club’s famous chocolate lava cake for dessert), non-alcoholic beverage, tax, tip and entertainment.

For Reservations

Limited seating. Please call (805) 667-2912, Ext. 237.

 

The Dramatic Dames Calendar!!!

http://www.vcstar.com/news/2009/nov/29/its-a-date/

http://www.vcstar.com/photos/2009/nov/27/80935/


Photo courtesy of Jeanne Tanner Photography

Merle DiVita is Nurse Ratched and a sheet-covered Joseph Fuqua is McMurphy in the 2010 Dramatic Dames Calendar’s February depiction of the play “One Flew Over the Cuckoos Nest.” Organized as a fundraiser for Rubicon Theatre Company in Ventura, it features members of the volunteer auxiliary Grandes Dames.

 

With a passion for the arts, some give their all in new calendars

It's a date

When the going gets tough, the tough get naked.

Prodded by stripped-to-the-bone budgets, supporters of the arts in Ventura County have taken off the gloves — and the shirts, pants and assorted unmentionables — to help. The results are two calendars for 2010 that feature local residents posing in the buff.

The Dramatic Dames Calendar is the inaugural effort of the Grandes Dames, the volunteer auxiliary of the Rubicon Theatre Company in Ventura.

It features members of the fundraising group wearing little more than smiles and carefully placed props as they interpret scenes from plays staged by the professional theater troupe.



Merle DiVita is Nurse Ratched and a sheet-covered Joseph Fuqua is McMurphy in the 2010 Dramatic Dames Calendar’s February depiction of the play “One Flew Over the Cuckoos Nest.” Organized as a fundraiser for Rubicon Theatre Company in Ventura, it features members of the volunteer auxiliary Grandes Dames.

Photo courtesy of Jeanne Tanner Photography

Merle DiVita is Nurse Ratched and a sheet-covered Joseph Fuqua is McMurphy in the 2010 Dramatic Dames Calendar’s February depiction of the play “One Flew Over the Cuckoos Nest.” Organized as a fundraiser for Rubicon Theatre Company in Ventura, it features members of the volunteer auxiliary Grandes Dames.

“A couple of years ago, we did a cookbook of the Grandes Dames’ favorite recipes. Last year, the project was cases of wine with show posters as the labels. This just seemed like a fun way to continue the theme,” said Grandes Dames President Wendy Gillett.

The Men of Ojai Calendar for 2010 is an all-new version of one last produced in 2007, said Demitri Corbin, director of what is now called the Ojai Calendar Project.

“In the beginning, it was a protest, a way of bringing awareness to the need for the city of Ojai to reinstate the arts grants it had discontinued during an earlier financial crisis,” he said.

But the inspiration to actually create the black-and-white calendar of images by photographer Attasalina Dews was a lot more colorful than that sounds, Corbin admitted.

“I was at Movino Wine Bar one night and asked some friends, ‘Would you pose nude for a good cause?’ And people said, ‘Sure!’ A few weeks passed and I forgot about it. Then a friend asked, ‘What’s going to happen with the calendar, man?’”

The selection of models was more complicated than merely finding local men willing to show some skin, he said.

Volunteers were asked to fill out an application listing their interests, then to undergo face-to-face interviews with Corbin on the topic of the calendar theme, which this year is “freedom.”

Finalists then were selected by the cheekily named Council of Fabulousness, a group of women with ties to the arts in Ventura County.

“It’s not just about looks; it’s about who makes real contributions to the community,” said Corbin.

This year, the project comes full circle with the inclusion of Movino manager and Ojai Art Center Theater producer Billy Wilds, who is featured striking what is, for the calendar, a rare indoors pose: reading on his couch at home.

In the spirit of the 2003 Helen Mirren film “Calendar Girls,” women willing to appear in the Dramatic Dames project were asked to put their names into a bucket for selection by drawing. Winners of the drawing were then paired with what Gillett considered “iconic” plays from Rubicon’s history.

They include former Ventura Mayor Rosa Lee Measures in a depiction of the William Inge play “Bus Stop,” certified financial planner Merle DiVita as Nurse Ratched from “One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest,” and octogenarian Realtor Helen Yunker — her hair loosened from its usual bun — as Blanche DuBois in a tableau from “A Streetcar Named Desire.”

The calendar’s images were shot on the Rubicon stage by photographer Jeanne Tanner during a single, busy week in October, between performances of “Daddy Long Legs.” The women did their own hair and makeup and in some cases brought their props.

“When you see them, you really get the sense that these are gorgeous, confident women who felt the importance of taking it off for charity,” said Gillett. “We loved doing it, and would consider doing it again.”

Dramatic Dames 2010: The calendar produced by the Grandes Dames as a fundraiser for Rubicon Theatre Co. in Ventura will debut at the group’s luncheon and boutique from 11:30 a.m. Dec. 7 at the Courtyard by Marriott in Oxnard, 600 E. Esplanade Drive. It also is available by calling Rubicon development coordinator Amber Landis at 667-2912, ext. 237. Cost is $20 for advance orders, $25 after Dec. 7.

 

http://www.vcreporter.com/cms/story/detail/a_tale_of_two_calendars/7475/


A tale of two calendars

The yin and yang of local arts fundraising

By Michel Cicero 12/10/2009

Two calendars, two causes, both genders, all nude. Forget the puppies, astrology, Twilight and lighthouses calendars at the mall kiosk this year. Depending on your sexual preference (and other associated fetishes) there are but two choices (excluding the other locally focused calendars currently in stores): Hot Dames 2010 and Men of Ojai 2010.

Hot Dames, a product of Rubicon Theatre Company’s 


                                                      Photo by: Jeanne Tanner
Grande Dames fundraising auxiliary is a full-color racy spread featuring high profile mature women posing as characters from productions past wearing little more than a prop or two. Tastefully photographed by Jeanne Tanner, the women — who include former deputy mayor Rosa Lee Measures, arts patron Sandra Laby and community icon Helen Yunker — bared all to raise money for the award-winning theatre company.

Brave as it would appear for women of a certain age to show their stuff, Seana Sesma, owner of The Wine Rack in Ventura, says all who participated are hams at heart, spending hundreds of dollars in a $20 per ticket drawing, for a chance to pose for the calendar.

That’s not to say the experience was without its challenges. “The biggest thing was letting go and being OK,” says Sesma. One of the women recently battled breast cancer and wanted women to know you can still be beautiful naked, post-mastectomy. Another woman, at 70 seized the opportunity to purchase her first thong undergarment. Helen Yunker, 88 years old and a fixture at Ventura City Council meetings for more than a decade, let down her hair for the occasion to “portray” Blanche Dubois from A Streetcar Named Desire.

Sandra Laby, who posed as Dulcinea from Man of La Mancha said she was “overjoyed” when plans for the “Calendar Girls” project was announced at a Grande Dames meeting. In retrospect, Laby, who says she would do almost anything for the Rubicon, would have preferred to have done the shoot with a drink in her belly. “It was a little scary, but the feelings that all of us had actually helped us through the group pictures. We could all feel the uneasiness that we all shared. We did lots of laughing almost like a group of school children.”

Rosa Lee Measures agreed that the shared experience was bonding. “It has been a lot of fun and has created an amazing camaraderie among a group of great volunteers,” she said.

While the women of the Rubicon withstood the bright lights of the stage sans apparel, the Men of Ojai endured elements with nary a prop to benefit arts education for children in Ojai. The Men of Ojai calendar, first created in 2007, is the brainchild of theater instructor Demetri Corbin, who originally tossed the idea around as a joke. “I started asking friends if they’d pose nude for a good cause, and people said yes,” he mused. Corbin assembled a group of female friends officially and affectionately known as the Council of Fabulousness to judge the male calendar contenders. The men were expected to have strong connections to the community and asked to give a personal definition of freedom. The result was a dozen or so men ranging in age and ethnicity but sharing a quality that Grande Dame Seanna Sesma described as “delicious.” Photographed in black and white by Attasalina Dews and Bobbi Bennett, the images are provocative and artistic, showing the men on location in and around Ojai doing what they do in their “free” time.

Nudity is not unheard of in Ojai where hot springs and other natural attractions invite it, but according to Corbin, once upon a time, it was much more public. “Everyone was nude — little kids, old people.” Even the statue at Libbey Bowl, which has since been replaced, was nude. Sometime in the 80s, he says, the attitude changed and a more buttoned up mentality took over the bucolic valley.

Corbin’s hope is that the calendar will raise much needed funds for arts education in Ojai but he’d also like it to raise a few, um, eyebrows.    

The Hot Dames calendar is available for $25 at the Rubicon Theatre and the Wine Rack in Ventura. The women will be signing calendars at the Wine Rack on Wednesday, Dec. 16 from 6:30-8 p.m. The Men of Ojai calendar is available for $25 at Soultonic in Ventura, at various stores in Ojai and at www.menofojai.com

michel@vcreporter.com