Ashley Park to host Prospect Gala, Celebrating 20 Years of New Musicals
Posted by: Official_Press_Release 10:46 am EST 03/05/19

Ashley Park hosts Prospect Theater Company's Spring Gala:
Monday, April 8th at Manhattan Penthouse

Celebrating 20 Years of Creating New Musicals

Honoring Steven Eng, Michelle McGorty, and Harriet Slaughter

Prospect Theater Company is pleased to announce its 2019 Gala event, to be held on Monday, April 8, 2019 from 6:30 - 10:30pm at Manhattan Penthouse (80 Fifth Avenue at 14th Street). This Spring, the company celebrates twenty years of bringing to life original musical theater works.
The concert event will be hosted by Tony and Grammy Award nominated actress, Ashley Park (Mean Girls, KPOP), and will feature favorite songs from Prospect's history. Members of the cast of The Hello Girls, the company's recent Off-Broadway hit, will be featured in an encore performance, alongside a line-up of other Broadway friends and Prospect artists, to be announced.

The Gala will honor three extraordinary leaders in Prospect's community: Steven Eng, Michelle McGorty, and Harriet Slaughter. The pivotal support of these champions has helped the organization thrive, and Prospect celebrates their contributions as the company looks ahead to a bright future. The evening will also recognize two decades of commitment and vision from the co-Founders of Prospect: Melissa Huber, Peter Mills, Cara Reichel, and Tony Vallés.

Attendees will enjoy great cuisine while experiencing panoramic sunset views of Manhattan. Tickets to the Gala, which include cocktails, dinner, and a special concert performance, are $350 - $550, and are available via www.ProspectTheater.org. A portion of each ticket is tax-deductible. Proceeds will support Prospect's mission to bring to life new musical theater by emerging theater artists.

For more information call 212-594-4476 or email info@ProspectTheater.org.


Ashley Park is a Tony and Grammy nominated actress who most recently originated and starred in MEAN GIRLS on Broadway as 'Gretchen Wieners' which garnered her Tony, Drama League, Drama Desk, Outer Critics Circle, and Chita Rivera Award nominations in 2018. In this same season, she starred in the award-winning "KPOP" and was honored with the esteemed Lucille Lortel award for Lead Actress in a Musical, and second Drama League and Drama Desk nominations. Previous to this, Ashley made her Broadway debut in MAMMA MIA!; originated the national tour of Rodgers & Hammerstein's CINDERELLA in the role of stepsister 'Gabrielle'; starred as 'Tuptim' opposite Ken Watanabe and Kelli O'Hara in the Tony-Award-winning Broadway revival of THE KING AND I at Lincoln Center Theater. Ashley then appeared in Broadway's revival of SUNDAY IN THE PARK WITH GEORGE starring Jake Gyllenhaal while filming the second season of "Nightcap" (Pop TV/ Lionsgate/ Dakota Pictures). She can be heard on the original Broadway cast recordings of MEAN GIRLS, SUNDAY IN THE PARK WITH GEORGE revival, and THE KING AND I revival. She is the proud recipient of Actor Equity Association's 2018 Clarence Derwent Award and a graduate of the University of Michigan. She recently wrapped shooting on the first season of Netflix's highly anticipated TALES OF THE CITY being released in Summer 2019.


Steven Eng's relationship with Prospect spans over a decade, beginning as an actor with the 2007 musical workshop of Honor. That would lead to subsequent performances with Prospect, and in the last several years to a producing partnership with National Asian Artists Project (NAAP), the non-profit he co-founded in 2009. NAAP's mission is to showcase the works of Asian-American theater artists through performance, outreach and educational programming. A professional actor for over 20 years, he continues to perform (2018 Lucille Lortel nomination for Outstanding Lead Actor in a Musical), direct (NAAP/Prospect's 2018 Into the Woods), and teach on the faculty of NYU's Tisch School of the Arts, where his work as a voice/speech/text authority has also been presented at the national conferences of the Voice and Speech Trainers Association. As an advocate for diversity and inclusion, Steven has been interviewed on NPR and other media outlets and served as a grants panelist for the National Endowment for the Arts.

Michelle McGorty's interest in musical theater started in the late 70's, when her parents took her to a touring production of CATS. An avid performer from that moment on, she joined the Princeton University Triangle Club in college, where she served as the Vice President and Tour Manager, and met future Prospect founders Cara Reichel, Peter Mills and Melissa Huber. As one of Prospect's earliest advocates, she joined its Board of Directors in 2005 and served through 2014, championing productions such as Golden Boy of the Blue Ridge and The Underclassman and helping the company grow by launching its first Gala. A positive force in all her endeavors, after graduating from Princeton, Michelle earned an MBA from Columbia Business School and spent 12 years at Booz Allen Hamilton before experimenting with "mompreneurship" via her baking company, Sweet McG's. She is currently the Triangle Club's Alumni Board Secretary, where she continues to support young artists developing new musicals, as well as the McGorty Family team leader, raising three talented and theater-loving children along with husband Glen.

Harriet Slaughter has been a life-long advocate for the arts, including theater, dance, poetry and visual art. Her career began as a triple-threat performer on the stage -- including the original Inherit the Wind and the Broadway production of Fiddler on the Roof. Harriet then went on to serve in senior executive leadership positions for Town Hall, Actors' Equity, and The Broadway League. As co-president of the League of Professional Theatre Women (LPTW), she co-produced the Women in Theatre TV series for CUNY-TV, hosted by Linda Winer of Newsday. For her achievements, she was honored by the New York Women's Agenda with their Galaxy Award. Long a supporter of women in the arts, she was first introduced to Cara Reichel and the work of the Prospect Theater Company through the LPTW's Lucille Lortel Committee and has since remained an avid Prospect supporter. Among other activities, Harriet published a book of her original poetry and paintings, ARS POETICA. Her paintings have also appeared in galleries in New York City. She regularly features her poetry at various venues on Long Island, where she now resides.


Prospect Theater Company (founded in 1998, with its first production in 1999) is dedicated to fostering and showcasing today's new voices shaping tomorrow's musicals. The company has fully produced more than 35 premiere musicals in New York City, in addition to new plays and numerous re-inventions of classic works. Reflecting its investment in the future of the field, Prospect leads a variety of developmental initiatives, including an annual Musical Theater Lab for emerging writers, and the IGNITE Series of concerts. In recognition of its enterprising and risk-taking new musical theater, the company received a 2016 OBIE Award grant. Prospect's work as a community anchor for emerging artists that strengthens the quality, diversity, and dynamism of American theater was also honored with a 2013 National Theatre Company Grant from the American Theatre Wing. Notable productions include: The Hello Girls (2018), The Mad Ones (2017), Death for Five Voices (2016), Long Story Short (2015), Jasper in Deadland (2014), the Drama-Desk nominated Tamar of the River (2013), Unlock'd (2013), the Drama Desk Award-winning Working (2012), Iron Curtain (2011, 2006), With Glee (2010), Golden Boy of the Blue Ridge (2009), The Blue Flower (2008), Illyria (2008, 2002), and the Drama-Desk nominated The Pursuit of Persephone (2005).

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