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Jane Fonda’s on stage, but Colin Farrell and Cher serve as opening act

February 10, 2011 |  3:15 pm

Jane Fonda and Cher

Colin Farrell
? Cher? At the theater?

Jane Fonda may have been the above-the-marquee draw at Wednesday’s opening night for “33 Variations” at the Ahmanson Theatre, but pre-curtain, all eyes were trained on the “In Bruges” star and, two rows up from him, Cher. In fact, the center orchestra section of the downtown L.A. theater was paparazzi heaven (minus the cameras, thank you).

Fonda-photo-gallery In the play, by Moises Kaufman, Fonda plays a musicologist researching the origins of Beethoven’s  “Diabelli Variations,” while grappling with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (Lou Gehrig's disease) and her shaky relationship with her daughter (played by Samantha Mathis). Heavy stuff.

So one would expect to see Fonda’s brother, Peter, and her son, Troy Garity, show up. But Chelsea Handler? And Anjelica Huston, Christian Slater, Rosanna Arquette, Carla Gugino, Penny Marshall, “True Blood’s” Carrie Preston and “Southland’s” Benjamin McKenzie? All there, within hug-and-kiss reach. (Click on the photo gallery to see who was there.)

Also taking in the show was writer-director Richard LaGravenese (seated with Cher), Tony Award winner Ben Vereen, “Smallville’s” John Glover, Tony winner Adriane Lenox, Michael Emerson (the creepy Ben from “Lost”), Corey Stoll of "Law & Order: Los Angeles," Joan Van Ark and Mary Hart.

Absent from the evening’s event was Lindsay Lohan, who starred with Fonda in 2007’s “Georgia Rule.”  The troubled actress had RSVPed for the performance, but apparently Lohan had other things on her mind Wednesday and wasn’t able to make it.

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-- Lisa Fung

Photo (top): Jane Fonda and Cher, after the show. Credit: Ryan Miller / Capture Imaging

Photo (bottom) Jane Fonda and Troy Garity. Credit: Ryan Miller / Capture Imaging

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