5th annual “Night of Glenbrook Theater” brings communities together for a good cause


On Saturday, April, 29, Northbrook and Glenview community members, parents, alumni, and friends will gather for the Glenbrook High School Foundation’s 5th annual dinner theater benefit “A Night of Glenbrook Theater,” featuring the North/South musical Fiddler on the Roof at Glenbrook South High School.

Accomplished film and television actress, Wendy Braun, will be the guest speaker and honorary alumna at this sold out event. Braun is a 1988 graduate of Glenbrook South High School who has enjoyed a successful acting career in Hollywood, with more than 75 television and film credits.  Braun is looking forward to returning to her alma mater and the school that helped shape her future success.

“When the Foundation contacted me, I was so surprised and flattered,” said Braun. “I have such fond memories of my time at Glenbrook South, especially performing in the North/South musicals.  After working as an actress in television and film for all these years, to be able to come back and show my gratitude, and support the next generation of dreamers is very special.”

Braun is also welcoming the opportunity to support the ongoing mission of the Glenbrook High School Foundation. “The work the Foundation is doing in the community is simply incredible,” said Braun.  “Success is hard to come by without exposure and opportunity.  The fact that the Foundation is providing so many resources through their amazing grants, programs, and scholarships ultimately creates a better community for everyone.”

The Foundation’s annual dinner theater benefit provides an opportunity for Glenbrook alumni and parents to gather for an important cause, while enjoying the talents of the Glenbrook students.  Guests of the event will enjoy a catered dinner in the Lyceum at Glenbrook South directly followed by entrance into the North/South musical Fiddler on the Roof.

Event chair person, Kristine Schwandner, commented on the continued success of this event. “It’s very exciting to mark the fifth year of the Glenbrook Foundation’s “Night of Glenbrook Theater” benefit. We feel like we’ve established a great Glenbrook tradition—a tradition of joining together to have fun with friends from both schools, knowing we are all doing something really good for the students,” said Schwandner.  “The event’s success aligns directly with the tremendous amount of support shown by Glenbrook parents, alumni and event sponsors.”

All proceeds from “A Night of Glenbrook Theater” go back to supporting programs and initiatives that enhance the educational experiences of Glenbrook students.  “This signature event is our largest fundraising enterprise,” stated Foundation chair person, Beth Bassler. “Each year we are attracting more and more people because the gala is a wonderful way to celebrate the talents of our students while supporting the mission of our foundation. People see this is a unique event and a great way to give back to our exceptional schools.”

The Glenbrook High School Foundation is a non-profit foundation that raises funds to enhance and enrich the educational experiences of all students within District 225, which includes Glenbrook North High School, Glenbrook South High School, and Glenbrook Evening School.  Since the first year of the event, the Foundation has awarded 31 Teacher Innovation grants and 24 student scholarships. The Foundation also continues to partner with District 225 to provide Chromebook computers to students of lower income families, bridging the digital divide that limits the educational opportunities of these students.

This year, the Foundation also has helped financially support the Business Incubator programs at both Glenbrook North and Glenbrook South high schools. The Incubator program provides opportunities for students to come up with business plans and present those ideas in a “Shark-tank” environment before local business owners and school administrators.  Career Education teacher Mike MacFadden heads up the program at Glenbrook South.  “The Glenbrook Foundation has been instrumental in helping to facilitate a truly authentic learning experience for our students. By funding each groups’ minimum viable product, our students are gaining real feedback regarding the market opportunity of their business ideas,” said MacFadden.

Event chair person Kristine Schwandner believes the Foundation’s dinner theater benefit has a unique role in uniting the communities of Northbrook and Glenview.  “Although the schools may be considered rivals on the field, at ‘A Night of Glenbrook Theater,’ these partner schools come together for one common cause—the Glenbrook students,” said Schwandner.  “It is the only school benefit that raises funds for all District 225 students’ programs and resources.”

Wendy Braun can be seen next guest starring on Grey’s Anatomy, and is recurring on the new Netflix series Atypical opposite Jennifer Jason Leigh and Michael Rappaport.  She currently resides in Los Angeles with her husband and two sons.  For more information on Wendy go to www.wendybraun.com.