More than 175k raised at auction

Art aficionados helped raise in excess of $176,000 to benefit the Laguna College of Art & Design (LCAD) at its 24th annual Collector's Choice Fine Art Event and Auction on June 8.

More than 420 guests flocked to the main campus in Laguna Canyon, where a live auction, led by Jim Nye, contributed nearly $45,000 to scholarships.

"Over 80% of our students need financial assistance to complete their degrees," Patricia O'Brien, LCAD board chair, wrote in a news release. "I am so pleased that the LCAD community responded to this request at this year's Collector's Choice."

Nelson Coates, an Emmy-nominated set and production designer and LCAD trustee, staged the event and served as emcee. The Art Directors Guild recently nominated him for an Excellence in Production Design Award for his work on the 2012 movie "Flight," which earned an Academy Award nomination.

Daniel Wong of Hawaii, LCAD graphic design and digital media alumnus, gave a speech, and guests were treated to dinner by executive chef Laurent Brazier.

Artists also offered 142 pieces, priced at about $200,000, to the cause. Richard MacDonald's sculpture "Blind Faith" brought in $6,000, the highest bid of the night.

Guests included Laguna Beach City Councilman Bob Whalen and his wife, LCAD Alumna Kirsten Whalen; Jared Mathis, co-founder of LCAD, and his wife, Kate; Festival of Arts board President Fred Sattler and his wife — a contributing artist — Jan Sattler; Laguna Beach Arts Commissioners Pat Kollenda and her husband, Jim, and Ken Auster and his wife, Paulette; and Festival of Arts Foundation board member John Campbell and his wife, Lu.


Village Laguna meeting set

Village Laguna will host its monthly meeting at 7 p.m. Monday at the Unitarian-Universalist Fellowship, 429 Cypress Drive, Laguna Beach.

Arnold Hano, longtime resident and author of "It Takes a Villager," will speak about his latest venture and sign copies of the book.

Books will be sold for $15, and the funds will benefit Village Laguna.

A slide show about the South Laguna Garden Park is also on the schedule.


Acting classes for youths

The Laguna Playhouse is rolling out its Summer Youth Theatre Classes.

Musical theater and acting classes last July 8 to 19 and meet from 9 a.m. to noon Monday through Friday. Children ages 7 to 12 are encouraged to sign up.

The Acting Ensemble Workshop — a combination of improvisation, storytelling and creativity culminating in the performance of an original script at 11 a.m. July 19 — will occur at the Laguna Playhouse and is geared toward children ages 7 to 9.

The Kids on Broadway Workshop, for youths ages 9 through 12 with beginner and intermediate levels of expertise, will meet at the Soka University Performing Arts Center, 1 University Drive, Aliso Viejo. Acting and performance techniques, as well as confidence-building exercises, are part of the curriculum. This will end with a rendition of "Annie the Musical" at noon July 19 in Soka's Black Box Theater.

Admission prices range from $300 to $400; scholarships are available.

For more information, visit or call (949) 497-2787, Ext. 230.


No Square to hold auditions

No Square Theatre, in the Legion Hall at 384 Legion St., Laguna Beach, will hold auditions for its summer rendition of "Lucky Stiff" starting at 6:30 p.m. Friday. The play will be directed by Joe Lauderdale.

Appointments for auditions must be made.

Applicants are requested to prepare one musical theater song and bring sheet music in the appropriate key, a headshot and resume if available. The play will be staged Aug. 2, 3, 4, 9, 10 and 11.

The theater is also on the verge of launching its 15-day summer musical theater camp for performers ages 5 to 13.

Ella Wyatt will lead up to 60 participants — beginning, intermediate and advanced — from Monday to July 12. Talent shows, activities and rehearsals will conclude with a Broadway-style performance at 2 and 4 p.m. July 21 and 22.

For more information, visit or email

— Rhea Mahbubani

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