Honor society chapter to induct members, welcome celebrity performers

The Phi Kappa Phi (PKP) academic honor society chapter of California State University, Stanislaus will welcome new members on Friday, April 27 during an evening ceremony following an open-to-the-public afternoon program featuring a pair of noted television and movie actors and the casting director of the hit TV drama "Grey's Anatomy."

Prior to the 7 p.m. Phi Kappa Phi initiation ceremony in the University's Main Dining Hall during which high-achieving CSU Stanislaus students and faculty will become members, three actors will stage a reading of the award-winning play "Art" at 3 p.m. in the Mainstage Theatre on campus and then participate in a 5 p.m. panel discussion. Scheduled to participate are "Grey's Anatomy" cast members Jeff Perry and Sarah Utterback, Chicago freelance actor Dan Gately, CSU Stanislaus Theatre Professor and actor John Mayer, and "Grey's Anatomy" casting director Linda Lowy.

The evening ceremony features keynote speaker Maria Davis, Marketing Development Manager at Phi Kappa Phi national headquarters. Joining the new student and faculty members from the community for special recognition are Turlock Mayor John Lazar for community service, retiring CSU Stanislaus Theatre Professor and set design expert Noble Dinse for his contributions in the arts, and Turlock realtor Bob Endsley for support of the University as a business owner.

The reading of Yasmina Reza's play "Art," a story about how art, friendship, and life mirror each other, and the ensuing panel discussion and question-and-answer session titled "The Ins and Outs of Hollywood," are free and open to the public. Mayer, personally acquainted with the actors through his professional theatre and acting pursuits, arranged the program with sponsorship help from PKP and the Union Program Board. Mayer will participate in the "Art" reading and Utterback will join the panel discussion.

Jeff Perry has also starred in the TV shows "Nash Bridges" and "Prison Break" as well as many other TV shows and films. He teamed with high-profile movie and TV star Gary Sinise and film star and theatre director Terry Kinney to co-found Chicago's famed Steppenwolf Theatre early in his acting career. Sarah Utterbach, a native of New Hampton, Iowa, who moved to Los Angeles after four years at a New York arts school to pursue an acting career, joined the "Grey's Anatomy" cast as Nurse Olivia in 2005.

Members of the media are encouraged to attend the play, the panel discussion, and the PKP initiation ceremony.