• The Burbage Award for achievement in expanding the love of Shakespeare to Paul Gross and Martha Burns, award-winning actors of Slings & Arrows fame. (Mr. Paul Gross will be in attendance at the Gala to celebrate this achievement!)
  • The Robin Goodfellow Award for extraordinary service to the American Shakespeare Center to Shenandoah Valley philanthropists Chris & Betsy Little


6:00pm Arrivals at the Blackfriars Playhouse

6:30pm Performance

8:00pm Dinner & Dancing at the Stonewall Jackson Hotel


Single Ticket: $275

Table Sponsorship: $2,750 (includes seating for eight guests and two ASC Artists)

Dress Code: Cocktail

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2019 gala honorees

Robin Goodfellow Award: Chris & Betsy Little

For extraordinary service to the American Shakespeare Center

No strangers to the ASC family, Chris and Betsy Little truly personify the rising tide that lifts all boats. Through their acts of volunteerism and philanthropy they have been a vital force in creating a thriving cultural sector and building bridges for civic engagement. For their championship of our friends at the Heifetz Institute and the Staunton Music Festival, for their stewardship of the R.R. Smith Center and the Staunton Augusta Arts Center, and for their tireless, transformative support of the American Shakespeare Center, we are excited to recognize them with this honor.

Chris and Betsy Little
Gala Honorees Chris and Betsy Little

Burbage Award: Paul Gross and Martha Burns

For achievement in expanding the love of Shakespeare

Paul Gross and Martha Burns will receive the Burbage Award which annually honors theatre makers whose work has made it possible for actors to perform and audiences to enjoy the plays of Shakespeare and his contemporaries. Their portrayals of unstable artistic director Geoffrey Tennant and enduring diva Ellen Fanshaw in the beloved television comedy series Slings and Arrows gave viewers an inside look at the show-behind-the-show and created a deeper appreciation for the loving struggles it takes to make a play and run a theatre. With both irreverence and deep compassion for its subject matter, Slings and Arrows tells the story of a Shakespeare company beset by challenges, the fictional “New Burbage Festival,”  as it strives to strike a tenuous balance between art and commerce.

Gala Honoree Paul Gross, famous for his work on the TV show Slings and Arrows.Honoree Paul Gross will visit Staunton to accept the award.


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Weekend Itinerary

Friday, September 20

5:00 pm Dr. Ralph Presents: Lecture on Caesar & Cleopatra

7:30 pm Caesar & Cleopatra (Music at 7:15)

Saturday, September 21

2:00pm Julius Caesar (Music at 1:45)

6:00pm Annual Gala: Performance @ Blackfriars & Dinner & Dancing @ Stonewall Jackson Hotel

Honoring: Robin Goodfellow Award for extraordinary service to ASC: Chris & Betsy Little

Sunday, September 22

11:00am Discovery Space: Ethan McSweeny in conversation w. special guest

2:00pm Antony & Cleopatra (Music at 1:45pm)

Contact Kelly Burdick at (540) 885-5588 ext 16
For more information or to purchase tickets

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Lodging Recommendations

(mention ASC Gala for a preferred rate!)
Stonewall Jackson

24 S. Market Street
(540) 885-4848

Blackburn Inn

301 Greenville Avenue
(540) 712-0601

Frederick House

28 N New Street
10% off 2 night stay
15% off 3+ nights
(540) 885-4220

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