The Guild Theater and a Deer Park salon are taking realism to the extreme in the fight against breast cancer. On Nov. 6, at 4:30 and 8 p.m., Avalon Salon and Day Spa in Deer Park will be transformed into “Truvy's” beauty parlor for a benefit performance of “Steel Magnolias,” by Robert Harling. The salon hosted two performances of the play Oct. 30.
The play “Steel Magnolias” by Robert Harling celebrates the relationships and collective fortitude of a multigenerational group of southern women as they challenge and confront the health struggles of “one of their own.” The original off-Broadway production moved to Broadway and eventually the big screen as the beauty parlor interactions of this sisterhood of women was immortalized by an all-star cast.
Bonnie Conte, Avalon’s “Chief Inspirational Officer,” explains the salon’s involvement.
“Avalon, for the last 10 years, has been supporting Breast Cancer Awareness Month. It really speaks wildly to us, especially this year, as one of our own was diagnosed with breast cancer in January," said Conte. "This year, more than ever, we really wanted to make an impact and really show the community how dedicated we are to trying to find answers and ways to support women who are going through this.”
The theater-in-the-salon presentation coincides beautifully with the mission of The Guild Theater to “connect the theatrical to reality” by way of quality professional theater that entertains and educates. The Guild Theater originally staged an extended run of “Steel Magnolias” to sold out audiences in 2009 at the Des Plaines History Center.
“It’s going to be a lot of fun to transform a salon into a theater,” said Conte. “Great entertainment for a good cause. We’re going to surprise and wow all of the attendees to have a little pampering while they’re here, to have a salon experience. It coincides beautifully with what’s going on in the play — it’s a great tie-in.”
Every October, Avalon partners with Aveda, the salon’s supplier, to sell “pink cap” products, including Aveda’s Pink Ribbon Hand Relief, sales of which benefit the Breast Cancer Research Foundation. “Throughout the month we have giveaways — awareness items, reminders to have mammograms, pink emery boards — to inspire guests to get on board with us.”
Weekends in October, members of Avalon’s salon team each donate $5 a day for the privilege of wearing jeans to work. Every dollar collected from this initiative benefits Susan G. Komen for the Cure. Avalon has rallied other Deer Park Town Center merchants to the cause. Neighboring stores have provided gifts for a drawing during the play intermission. Avalon stylist Ingrid, who inspired this year’s extra special event, will draw the winners in celebration of her recent prognosis of being “cancer free.”
Tickets to the joint Avalon Salon and Day Spa and The Guild Theater breast cancer benefit production are $25, $5 of which will benefit Susan G. Komen for the Cure, and can be purchased at Avalon. Avalon Salon and Day Spa is located in Deer Park Town Center, 20503 N. Rand Road (between Deer Park Boulevard and Long Grove Road) and is open seven days a week. Salon hours, Monday through Saturday, are from 9 a.m. to 9 p.m., and Sundays from 11 a.m. to 6 p.m.
For more information on Avalon Salon and Day Spa, visit www.avalondeerpark.com and to learn about The Guild Theater, go to www.theguildtheater.org.
This information was provided by The Guild Theater and Avalon Salon.