Shea’s Performing Arts Center will honor former President and CEO Patrick Fagan with The Michael Shea Lifetime Legacy Award at the annual gala held on Friday, May 20. The award, only the second ever bestowed, will be presented to Fagan in recognition of his years of dedication and leadership as president of Shea’s.
“Shea’s would not be what it is today without the extraordinary vision and leadership of our good friend, Patrick Fagan,” said Michael G. Murphy, president of Shea’s. “His ingenuity and imagination, coupled with careful stewardship of Shea’s at a pivotal time in our history, laid the foundation for our current success.”
A press release noted, “Fagan’s greatest accomplishments at Shea’s are often acknowledged when talking about the stagehouse expansion and what that meant for Shea’s Buffalo Theatre. By expanding the physical footprint and technical capabilities of a much larger stagehouse, Patrick Fagan made it possible for blockbuster Broadway shows like ‘The Phantom of the Opera,’ ‘Miss Saigon,’ ‘Disney's The Lion King,’ ‘Wicked’ and, most recently, ‘Hamilton,’ to visit Buffalo – in many instances for multiple weeks at a time. That foresight helped propel Shea’s to one of the top one-week markets for touring Broadway in the entire country.
“Additionally, Patrick Fagan recognized that, while increasing the potential for touring productions, it was also just as essential to prioritize the restoration of the theater. Engaging the talent of restoration consultant Doris Collins, Fagan kick-started a 25-year effort to restore the wonder to Shea's Buffalo Theatre, now heralded by many as the 'crown jewel of downtown.' The theater is a destination not just to experience a show, but also awe-inspiring architecture that is the envy of other cities across the country.”
Murphy said, “We are honored and thrilled to present The Michael Shea Lifetime Legacy Award to Patrick Fagan. His contribution to the success of Shea’s and the performing arts in Western New York will be felt for generations by a long line of Shea’s patrons. So, on behalf of the entire community, we thank him for his years of service and for pouring his passion into protecting, preserving, and making Shea’s the premier center for performing arts in the region.”
The annual gala, sponsored in part by M&T Bank, Russell J. Salvatore, and Ticketmaster, is the single most important fundraising event for Shea’s Performing Arts Center. The event begins with a cocktail reception on Shea’s Grand Stage followed by a private performance from “Hamilton’s” Phillipa Soo and her husband, star of Broadway stage and screen, “Steven Pasquale.”
This year’s gala chairs are Dr. Raul and Toni Vazquez, and co-chairs Donald and Denise Fishback. All proceeds benefit ongoing restoration improvements and maintenance of Shea’s, as well as arts engagement and education programming.
For more information on attending, or to become a corporate or honorary sponsor, call 716-829-1168.