The Silicon Valley Voice

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Peninsula Youth Theatre’s Au Cabaret Fundraiser Gala Supports Youth Arts

Peninsula Youth Theatre (PYT) held its annual Au Cabaret, a spectacular gala event in support of the arts, on Saturday, Sept. 21. Community members and PYT fans gathered at the Mountain View Community Center where they enjoyed a variety of wine and desserts and had the opportunity to participate in PYT’s silent auction. They also enjoyed routines by many of PYT’s talented young performers.

The Au Cabaret musical theatre was full of various numbers from classic and contemporary Broadway shows as talented teen performers passionately performed songs selected to display their talents to the fullest.

“PYT gives people a space to express themselves and make friends — so it’s important to help make sure that PYT has the support it needs,” said Theo Gardiner, a PYT actor and Santa Clara resident.


PYT raises 30 percent of its annual budget through donations and relies heavily on fundraising events like Au Cabaret so it can keep its creative programs running for youth in the community.

PYT Executive Director Karen Simpson, a Santa Clara resident, always aims to make the gala a fun event that allows anyone who wants to donate in some way — before or after the event — to do so at a level that is meaningful for them.

“It’s a fabulous time of year when our community can come out and support arts education,” she said.

“The annual PYT Au Cabaret evening, as well as ongoing sponsorships and donations, are a great opportunity to give back to a community that has given so much to our daughter and entire family,” said Brian Belding, a PYT parent volunteer. “The night was topped off with a wonderful performance by many of the young actors who reminded us why we were there.”

Au Cabaret PYT cast members were Samantha Belding, Ella Brutman, Chloe Burcell, Anya Colliou, Eva Colliou, Spencer Cook, Mia Corfmat, Adam Fallick, Julia Fung, Roni Gal-Oz, Theo Gardiner, Charlie Hammond, Caroline Koltek, Lizzy Kundrat, Derron Mendel, Jamie Penilla, Ash Prodromou, Tessa Prodromou, Ben Siegel, Anna Sonsini, Olivia Spreen, Michael Tucker, Izzy Zohar and Val Zvinyatskovsky. Au Cabaret PYT artistic staff who directed and produced this event are Mike Cobb, Olivia Cobb, Caitlyn DeRouin, Loryn Hatten, Karen Simpson, Holly Smolik and Meg Fischer Venuti.

“I loved the fundraiser because I got to work with many amazing directors to create a show and raise money for an organization I really care about,” said Ella Brutman, a PYT actor and Sunnyvale resident. “PYT provides an amazing environment and the support you get there; you can’t find anywhere else. PYT isn’t just a youth theater, it is a place where everyone can feel accepted — You just be you, and that’s enough. PYT is home.”

If you were not able to attend PYT’s Au Cabaret, you can still donate by visiting


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