Hollywood A-listers JIMMY FALLON and JENNIFER HUDSON are coming to St. Louis for the 22nd annual BOB COSTAS Benefit for SSM Cardinal Glennon Children’s Medical Center. Fallon, host of Late Night with Jimmy Fallon and a Saturday Night Live alum, is headlining the event. The musical entertainment will be provided by Hudson, the former American Idol finalist who went on to win an Academy Award for her performance in Dreamgirls and starred in the box office hit Sex and the City. Tickets to the April 17 event at the Fox Theatre are available by phone, 577-5605, or online at glennon.org.
A major coup for The Fox and Dance St. Louis…The 2009 Tony Award-winning Best Musical, Billy Elliot, is coming to town! Based on the worldwide smash-hit film, the musical features music by ELTON JOHN and direction by STEPHEN DALDRY. The show will run Aug. 10 to 28, 2011, and will play in both the U.S. Bank Broadway and Dance St. Louis 2010-2011 subscription seasons.
Webster Groves third grade teacher MARY ANN HOWARD is the recipient of the 2010 HUMANE SOCIETY OF MISSOURI ‘Humane Teacher of the Year’ award. Howard received the news during a surprise ceremony last month at Clark Elementary School. She was honored for incorporating humane, environmental and character education in class and also for her work at Club HOPE, an after-school community service group benefiting animals. Celebrating along with students, faculty and staff were a smattering of four-legged guests, including mini-horse Calypso and mini-donkey Juniper from the Humane Society’s Longmeadow Rescue Ranch.
The WILLIAM T. KEMPER FOUNDATION and the KEMPER FAMILY have given a grant totaling $3 million to Washington University. The gift will be split evenly between two initiatives: support for the Mildred Lane Kemper Art Museum’s directorship and the university’s Hope Center for Neurological Disorders at the School of Medicine. Established in 1989, the Foundation’s mission is to support the arts, education, civic projects and health and human services in the metro area.
Congratulations to SILVER DOLLAR CITY for 50 years of entertaining us! The 2010 season begins this month, and we’re told the year-long celebration includes the unveiling of a new $7 million interactive water raft ride, Tom & Huck’s RiverBlast, this spring.
Look for two of Ladue High School’s most promising young musicians on stage this weekend as part of the annual ART IN THE LIMELIGHT-LADUE festival. Freshman HAOHANG XU has played violin since age 6 and is a member of the Saint Louis Symphony Youth Orchestra. Junior DANIEL KOPP, also a youth SLSO member, teaches cello in his spare time to fifth grade students at Reed Elementary. Haohang and Daniel are slated to perform in a free concert March 14, in the Ladue H.S. Performing Arts Center.
Kudos to Chesterfield Day School third grader JASON ZHOU for his second-place finish in the 2010 U.S. Junior Chess Congress. Jason and more than 200 players from across the country traveled through snow storms to Indianapolis for last month’s competition. Since then, he’s also snagged the No. 2 spot in the Missouri championship. Jason has been playing chess for only about a year, but parents GUOFU ZHOU and HUIXIA LI have taken him all over the country to participate in competitions over the past few months.
Curtain call…SARAH PRICE of St. Charles is back in town following her successful turn as the lead role in the Lowell House Opera production of Tosca by GIACOMO PUCCINI. Lowell House, New England’s oldest opera company, performs on the Harvard University campus in Cambridge, Mass. Price, the music and worship arts director at St. John United Church of Christ in St. Charles, has sung in opera and concert performances across the country and Europe, and is gaining recognition in Italian opera circles.
Don’t tell Cookie Monster…LN’s annual reader recipe contest is back, and this time around, we’re looking for COOKIES! If your cookie recipe is the talk of the town, this is the contest for you. Drop off a dozen of your favorite cookies, along with the recipe, to the LN offices on Tuesday, March 23 from 8 a.m. to 2 p.m. to be taste-tested by our panel of judges. The winning recipe will be published in our April 9 issue, and the winner gets a $25 gift certificate to the L’École Culinaire’s presentation kitchen.