LA TIMES - LIVING SECTION - "SOCIAL CIRCUITS"
A Masterful Occasion
Celebrating a tradition where life imitates art, actors dined alongside supporters of the Festival of Arts in Laguna Beach before viewing the final performance of this year's Pageant of the Masters, "Beyond the Horizon."

Among the hundreds of people gathered under the stars for the black-tie gala at the Tivoli Terrace restaurant were event emcee Tommy Tune, Peter Falk, Broadway star Susan Egan and pageant director Diane Challis Davy.

Annually, hundreds of volunteers take the stage at the Irvine Bowl to create tableaux vivant , an art form that utilizes the human body, props and painted backdrops to create the illusion of two-dimensional paintings.

"I've been coming to the pageant for years because it is such a unique entertainment," Tony Award-winning performer Tune said. "It doesn't exist anywhere else on this planet."

Seated at tables draped in crisp white linens and crowned with flickering votives, guests dined on petite filet mignon, jumbo shrimp and chocolate truffle cake as they chatted about the pageant that attracts viewers from around the world.

"This is my first pageant," said Bill Brochtrup, a star of television's "NYPD Blue." When a table mate exclaimed over the paintings depicted in the pageant program, Brochtrup averted his eyes. "I don't want to spoil any of the surprises," he said.
--Ann Conway