May 19, 2011  •  Gertie & Mary  •  Awards - Charity - Events

Actress and former Light Opera Guild veteran Jennifer Garner will host a red carpet benefit for the guild June 18 as part of FestivALL.

Garner, who offered to do a fundraiser for the guild, will host a benefit before the guild’s production of “Thoroughly Modern Millie” at the Civic Center Little Theater.

Longtime guild director Nina Denton Pasinetti said she has worked with Garner since Garner was a dance student as a child. She later directed Garner in guild musicals and the two have remained close.

“She volunteered to do this,” Pasinetti said of the event, which will include a red carpet entry, an opportunity for participants to have photos taken with the actress and to attend a gala reception after the production. Garner will not appear in the production of the show, but rather will attend as an audience member.

“She said, ‘I want to come back and help the Light Opera Guild,’ ” Pasinetti said.

Tickets to the show and party with premium seating and a photo with Garner are $200 and will go on sale at the Little Theater box office June 1. Tickets to the show and party with reserved seating are $120.

“We are very honored she is coming back for this,” Pasinetti said, adding proceeds from the fundraiser will help with guild expenses that include production costs and maintenance of its theater on Tennessee Avenue.

Mayor Danny Jones noted that he appeared in two productions with Garner in the 1980s, when Garner was just in high school. They included “Annie Get Your Gun” and “Music Man.”

Jones joked that he tells anyone who will listen that he appeared on stage with Garner.

“I don’t believe she’s changed a bit,” he added, “and I think we’re fortunate that she grew up here and that she’s coming back.”


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