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Posted February 27, 2006

Vince Pesce Dons Legendary Gypsy Robe in THE PAJAMA GAME

Vince Pesce

Vince Pesce, a chorus member in THE PAJAMA GAME, is the newest recipient of Equity’s legendary Gypsy Robe. The colorful garment was presented to Mr. Pesce during an exciting backstage ceremony at the American Airlines Theatre on opening night (Thursday, February 23) recreating a time-honored tradition that began over 50 years ago.

Lavishly decorated with mementos from recent Broadway musicals, the robe is given to the cast member who has the most chorus credits. Vince has done several Broadway shows, including: WONDERFUL TOWN, LITTLE SHOP OF HORRORS, BEAUTY & THE BEAST, VICTOR-VICTORIA, and CATS.

Equity Robe Director Terry Marone kicked off the ceremony by introducing a stellar group of former robe recipients, including: Brynn Williams (IN MY LIFE), Michelle Kittrell (ALL SHOOK UP), Harvey Evans (OKLAHOMA! SUNSET BOULEVARD), Terry Violino (ILLYA DARLING), Joyce Chittick (SEUSSICAL, CABARET), Jennifer Cody (URINETOWN), Devin Richards (JESUS CHRIST SUPERSTAR), Eileen Casey (MARILYN), Sara Schmidt (JERSEY BOYS) and James Dybas (PACIFIC OVERTURES, SCARLET PIMPERNEL).

Jennifer Cody, AEA Executive Director Alan Eisenberg and Kelli O'Hara

Ms. Marone also introduced Equity Executive Director Alan Eisenberg and Robe Historian Gloria Rosenthal. Also attending were: Equity Chorus Councillors Tom Miller, Scott Watanabe, Senior Business Representative, Zalina Hoosein, National Communications Director David Lotz, and Communications Assistant, Nicole Yanolatos.

Michelle Kittrell with Dance Captain David Eggers and AEA Communications Director David Lotz

Alex Sanchez (CHITA RIVERA: THE DANCER’S LIFE), brought Brynn Williams into the center of the circle to regale the onstage crowd with the rich history of the robe. Alex then proclaimed the newest recipient: Vince Pesce ! Vince burst into the circle, delighted to don the garment and excitedly circled the stage three times in accordance with the tradition. Later, he visited everyone backstage.

Concluding the ceremony, Ms. Marone explained that robes are now on display at the Smithsonian Institute and the Museum of the City of New York. Another robe is on permanent display at the Equity Audition Center in New York City.

Michael McKean, Kelli O'Hara, Vince Pesce ( Gypsy Robe Winner ) and Harry Connick Jr.
All photos by Walter McBride

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