Globe Gala Celebrates World Premiere of The First Wives Club


There were first wives, second wives and more at the Globe Theatre Gala August 1. There were a whole lot of gentleman too, all to celebrate the World Premiere of The First Wives Club.

Guests first gathered for champagne, appetizers, and silent auction shopping in the Balboa Park Alcazar Garden. The silent auction items included some very serious wine for the collecting. A very popular section indeed!

Co-Chairs Sandy Redman with Debra Turner

The fashionable there included Sheryl White in a brocaded Marchesa dress, Renee Schatz in an understated gown by Dior, Emma Zuckerman in a pretty green gown by Roberto Cavalli with breathtaking backside, Karen Cohn in a fitted royal purple gown by Zac Posen, Denise Hug in a trim ABS gown, Deni Jacobs in an elaborate strapless gown by Baracci of Beverly Hills, Iris Strauss in a pretty embellished Oscar de la Renta, Jeanne Jones in Lezlie George of London, and Valerie Cooper in a soft pink gown by British designer Jenny Packham. The gown featured a feathery hemline and a whole lot of ‘wow’ factor 'figured in.'

Tanya Brandes wore a watermelon colored Versace gown. The gown matched the feathers accessorizing Tnaya's coiffure. Sheila Lipinsky wore a brilliant blue gown by Jordan matched with colorful jewelry. Lynda Kerr wore a pink strapless Polo gown with black trim and black gloves. The gloves hid the cast on her broken wrist. Lynda wryly was carrying a giant faux ring, right in theme with the evening's performance of The First Wives Club.

Guys sporting thematic pink ties included Todd Schultz of the Old Globe, his had polka dots, and Scott Johnston. Scott wore a pink and white striped Polo tie. Leonard Simpson went wild with a ruffled tuxedo jacket from San Diego's new 'it' designer, A.Qadir Hamidi or Designer 'Q!'

Radio Host Jerry Cesak, know as 'Jer,' was dressed well with monogramed cuffs and black and white shoes.

More among the black tie set there were Audrey Geisel, she's an angle to the Globe, and Alex Butterfield, Jeanne Jones and Don Breitenberg, Gigi and Ed Cramer, Gigi wore Nicole Miller, actors Marion Ross and Paul Michael, David Copley, Pam and Jerry Cesak, Sylvia & Richard Ostronik, Andrew Shelton, Carolyn Yorston-Wellcome and Bard Wellcome, Lisa and David Casey, Carol and Jeffrey Chang, Dixie and Ken Unruh, Debra Turner and Conrad Prebys, and Sandy Redman.

By the way, Sandy Redman wore a pretty Tadashi by Shoji silver gown. It is the same designer worn by Sheryl Lee Ralph, the actress who plays Elyse in First Wives Club. Sheryl wears Tadashi by Shoji throughout the show.He is one of her favorite designers.

Sandy and Debra Turner both served as designers of the gala. They served as chairs of the event. And they did so beautifully!

“First of all, we would like to thank everyone who attended and supported this amazing event, which raised a net income of just over $600,000.  As co-chairs, we couldn’t have been happier with the generosity and enthusiasm that we saw on Saturday night, and we’re all thrilled that this support will help sustain the Globe’s education and artistic programs this year.  More than 250,000 people attend Globe performances each year, and 50,000 participants – mostly children – benefit from education activities at the Globe, and the Globe’s national reputation as the sixth largest and of the leading theatres in the United States is bolstered by support received at the Gala.

The evening itself turned out well, and we were pleased with the beautiful weather in Balboa Park for the reception and dinner.  Couples attending the Gala enjoyed the battle-of-the-sexes humor in the First Wives Club, and it looks like the Globe has another hit on its hands.  We can’t wait to see this new musical make its way to Broadway!”

Karen Cohn agreed and added this. “I enjoyed the evening. I thought the new Copley Plaza looked amazing lit in bright pink and white polka-dots. I love seeing the beginning performance of a brand new musical, and then to watch the play evolve over the next 6 weeks of its run. There were some great songs and the wonderful Globe sets. It was a beautiful San Diego evening in Balboa Park.” 

For some, the evening ‘Cristal-ized’ beautifully. “The Old Globe outdid themselves again with their pre-Broadway show of The First Wives Club” said Valerie Cooper along with husband Harry Cooper.  “The show is so much fun and the music by Holland Dozier and Holland is super.  It is true great entertainment.  It is a must see!  The party was the icing on the cake, a lovely al fresco evening.  Debbie Turner and Sandy Redman are commended for putting together such a lovely evening and raising so much money for The Old Globe!”

By the way Darlene Shiley got a good amount of paddle raising in during the live auction. Among her big bidding was $30,000 for a very exclusive trip to Cuba. Darlene described her auction paddle handle as a medical tongue depressor. With a lot of patron support, bidding paddles and all, the Globe patrons are good medicine for ensuring glowing health for the Globe!

To learn more about the Globe Theatre, please visit

Please enjoy the photos.

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Marc Matys and Robert Gleason ** Tanya Brandes

Sylvia Ostronik with her daughter, Valerie Cooper ** Jerry and Pam Cesak

Audrey Geisel with Lou Spisto, Executive Director of the Globe Theatre

Jeff and Sheila Lipinsky

Tanya Brandes with Karen Cohn

Daran Grimm with Renee Schatz

Harry and Valerie Cooper

Joye Blount ** Peter Corrente with Denise Hug

Richard and Sylvia Ostronik with Valerie and Harry Cooper

Jeanne Jones and Don Breitenberg with Marion Ross and Paul Michael

Hermeen Scharaga with Suzanne Figi, Emma Zuckerman and Judy Corrente

Tanya Brandes with Karen Cohn ** Lynne and Steve Wheeler

A Spectacular Bouquet

Dixie Unruh with Bob and Pat Whalen

Debra Turner and Conrad Prebys with Sandy Redman

June and Neil Ash

Deni Jacobs with Frank and Lee Goldberg ** Cindy with Mitch Goldman

Deni Jacobs and Jeanne Jones

Lynda and Richard Kerr

Lynne Wheeler with Jim and Tiffany Mahoney

Pam and Hal Fuson ** Lola Walters

Jeff and Deni Jacobs

The Talented Duo behind Holland Dozier and Holland's Music

Harry Cooper with Andrew Shelton and Valerie Cooper

Valerie Cooper with Scott Johnston ** Bertrand Hug with Valerie Cooper and Scott Johnston

David Copley with Tanya Brandes

Harry and Valerie Cooper

Bertrand and Denise Hug

Valerie Cooper with Andrew Shelton

Cheers to all of the Globe Supporters, photo credit David Copley

Richard and Sylvia Ostronik

Harry and Valerie Cooper with Andrew Shelton listening intently

Denise Hug with Margo Schwab and David Copley

Theatre talk between Valerie Cooper and David Copley

Jesse Knight Jr. and Joye Blount ** Rick Wildman and Constance Hughes

Zandra Rhodes ** Tanya Brandes holding her sash with Valerie Cooper

Tanya Brandes with Valerie Cooper, Margo Schwab and Denise Hug

Joan Jacobs with Iris Strauss and Tanya Brandes

Valerie Cooper with David Copley and Sylvia Ostronik

A Dining Table Centerpiece laden with roses and 'First Wives Rings'

Valerie Cooper

Denise Hug offering a smile and sign language above husband Bertrand Hug and Harry Cooper

Tanya and Charles Brandes

Bertrand Hug showing an 'ooh la la' French dance move

It was a 'Shoe-In' with Denise Hug's shoes, Tanya Brandes and Valerie Cooper getting admiring looks from Andrew Shelton

And there were a lot of laughs....

Tanya Brandes and Valerie Cooper

Denise Hug with Tanya Brandes, Valerie Cooper and Andrew Shelton

Bertrand Hug showing wife Denise those Francais dance moves

Lola and Walter Green

Harry Cooper with Tanya Brandes

Valerie Cooper sharing a laugh with Todd Schultz of the Old Globe

Andrew Shelton

David Copley with Harry Cooper and Andrew Shelton

David Copley with Harry Cooper, Andrew Shelton and Charles Brandes

Valerie Cooper giving a wink and having a laugh with Andrew Shelton and David Copley

David Copley with Scott Johnston, Andrew Shelton, Harry Cooper, Charles Brandes and Bertrand Hug

Tanya Brandes with Valerie Cooper, Sheryl White, Denise Hug, Lou Spisto and M.

Charles and Tanya Brandes

Denise Hug with Harry and Valerie Cooper

and they danced on into the night...

Bertrand Hug and Scott Johnston 'font la danse!'

Valerie and Harry Cooper sharing a laugh while dancing


A special thank you to Harry and Valerie Cooper for having us as their guests.

Special thanks also to Charles Brandes, Bertrand Hug, and David Copley for their

additional photo skills!



reported by Margo Schwab and Scott Johnston


The Buzz




To Musical News......

Pictured here are:

SummerFest Gala Honorary Chair Lael Kovtun with La Jolla Music Society President and Artistic Director Christopher Beach, and Gala Chair Annika Kovtun. (Not pictured is Honorary Chair Jay Kovtun)

Annika and Gordon Kovtun held a reception for SummerFest patrons at their home overlooking San Diego to the South. Among the many there enjoying Annika and Lael's incredible buffet cuisine were Jeanne Jones and Don Breitenberg, Carolyn Yorston-Wellcome and Bard Wellcome, SummerFest Chair Martha Dennis, Patsy and David Marino, Sally Fuller, and Dolly and Victor Woo.

Part of the entertainment was watching the Kovtuns' egg laying chickens run back and forth across the lawn. And the lawn was next to the extensive fruit and vegetable garden.

.....Gordon explained, Annika got her garden, and he got his boat.

Back to things musical. SummerFest starts today, the 29th, which happens to be Annika's birthday coincidentally, and runs its full packed musical festival until August 23rd. The SummerFest Gala is August 14th, 2009.

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* Margo Schwab, more formally known as Margaret E. Schwab, has produced, written, interviewed and photographed for various media organizations since 1989. Schwab attended Holton Arms School, La Jolla Country Day School and La Jolla High School. Schwab has a B.A. from Scripps College, spent a business internship with S.A.I.C., Science Applications International Corporation, and earned a Masters of Business degree, M.B.A., from the University of San Diego. Schwab additionally took college courses from Harvard University, and Syracuse University. Schwab volunteers for numerous charity organizations. She also continues to support animal organizations and the prevention of people and animal abuse. Schwab is the editor of The Social Diary.

The Social Diary is pleased to announce new partnerships with the San Diego Humane Society and San Diego News Network.



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