The Eli and Edythe Broad Stage at the Santa Monica College Performing Arts Center opened with a moving performance by an eclectic stage of performers sponsored by Cass Noble Tequila.
The Theatre’s debut, launching the $45 million project, featured various incredible actors durring the stage reading such as: Dustin Hoffman, James Cromwell, Annette Bening, Rosario Dawson, Ben Acland, Michele B. Chan, Nate Parker, Elisa Bocanegra, and Richard Schiff.
Dustin Hoffman had spent a great deal of the time over the last nine years raising money for the project and is now Chair of the Artistic Advisory Board and is determined to make a difference. Teal Sherer was the first performer to grace the stage in her wheelchair. Hoffman and the Board Theatre ventured out to cast an actor with a disability and send a heart-felt message of inclusion and acceptance to the community. The dazzlingly modern theatre invites diverse performers and theatre goers of all backgrounds with its complete handicap accessible construction and available Assisted Listening Devices.
In addition to the accessibility, the Broad Stage was designed by architect Renzo Zecchetto so beautifully that every seat in the house is a great seat for any theatre enthusiast. The LA Times noted “Inside, its impressive 499-seat auditorium -- which will be asked to handle an eclectic range of performances, including spoken word, art song, orchestral programs and dance -- aspires to both the formal intimacy of an 18th century Italian opera house and the high-tech functionality of a college lecture hall.”