"Best of the Bankhead," a virtual benefit for the Livermore Valley Performing Arts Center, is being held at 6 p.m. Nov. 21 to celebrate the arts and acknowledge all the live entertainment missed as a result of the pandemic. Tickets include dinner and wine delivered to homes prior to the event.
The benefit will be hosted by the center's Executive Director Chris Carter and emceed by Freddy Silveria, who will appear live from the Bankhead stage. It will feature cameo video performances by some of the most popular artists who have appeared at the Bankhead since it opened in 2007.
Audience favorites performing at "Best of the Bankhead" will include comedian Paula Poundstone, ukulele master Jake Shimabukuro, and smooth jazz legend Keiko Matsui. They have appeared at the Bankhead more than four times each, filling the house, and all three are booked for live performances at the Bankhead in 2021.
The Choir of Man, a rollicking pub show that has sold out the theater twice in less than a year, was scheduled to return (virtually) next week but had to cancel due to new restrictions in London.
Due to the closure of the Bankhead and the Bothwell Arts Center for COVID-19 safety, "Best of the Bankhead" will be the only major fundraising event this year for Livermore Valley Performing Arts Center, replacing the annual Brilliance at the Bankhead gala. Typically held in September, that fundraiser has been postponed to 2021.
"While we continue to offer virtual performances such as Vineyard Vibes and online art classes, our ability to deliver on our mission to serve the community through the arts has been severely restricted, far beyond anything we could have imagined," Carter said.
"We took quick action to preserve our financial situation, but in order to come back strong when we're able to open again, we must continue to rely on the support of the community," he continued. "We are focused on how we can help restore the arts in downtown Livermore as soon as it is safely possible."
Tickets to "Best of the Bankhead" are $150 per person for event access, and catered dinner and wine delivered. To attend with no dinner or wine, "Pay What You Want" tickets are available at a suggested minimum of $25.
The event will include a drawing for two special items: a Circle of Diamonds pendant donated by Lance Cavalieri Jewelers valued at approximately $5,000; and a pair of tickets to the 2021 Brilliance at the Bankhead Gala starring Vanessa Williams. Drawing tickets are only available in advance through the box office for $20 each or 10 tickets for $150.
Event tickets may be picked up at the Bankhead Theater with an optional tour of its gallery's new exhibit of works by local artists who create or teach at the Bothwell.
To buy tickets, visit www.livermorearts.org, call 373-6800 or email [email protected]