Dame Edna
(© Greg Gorman)
Dame Edna
(© Greg Gorman)
Dame Edna will host a benefit celebration for the opening of the new Mark Taper Forum, Saturday, September 13, at 5:30 p.m., on the Music Center Plaza in downtown Los Angeles.

The re-opening follows the Taper's 12-month, $30 million state-of-the-art renovation, which included changes to all the theater's lighting, electrical, air handling and sound systems; new seats, carpeting, and railings along the aisles; an expansion of the lobby and the addition a new downstairs lounge; and the cleaning and restoration of the building's neo-classic exterior.

The gala benefit begins with a special red-carpet experience as Dame Edna covers the arrivals to her own party, followed by cocktails, dinner, a special sneak preview in the new Taper of John Guare's classic The House of Blue Leaves, and post play festivities.

Dame Edna, a.k.a. Barry Humphries, has starred on Broadway in the 1999 show Dame Edna: The Royal Tour, for which he won Tony, Drama Desk and Theatre World Awards, and in 2005's Dame Edna: Back With a Vengeance. She will appear at the Ahmanson in June 2009 with her show, Dame Edna: My First Last Tour.

Tickets to the gala cost $1,500 and are available by calling (213) 972-3139. Proceeds from the benefit will help support the work of Center Theatre Group.

For more information, visit www.CenterTheatreGroup.org.