Last night The Actors Fund, the national human services organization for everyone in performing arts and entertainment, announced that their first-ever Virtual Gala raised $1.1 million on Monday. The evening celebrated The Actors Fund and the 35th anniversary of Career Transition For Dancers, a program of The Fund, while also presenting The Fund’s Medal of Honor to Tony Award-winning actor Matthew Broderick and Emmy Award-winning actor, producer, and business owner Sarah Jessica Parker (presented by three-time Tony Award-winning actor Nathan Lane); founding member and Artistic Director of Dance Theatre of Harlem Virginia Johnson (presented by Director of the Juilliard Dance Division Alicia Graf Mack); Tony Award-winning actor and Chairman of The Actors Fund Brian Stokes Mitchell (presented by Actors Fund Board Vice Chair, and Oscar, Emmy and Tony Award-nominated actress Annette Bening); Academy Award-winning producer, co-owner of the New York Football Giants and philanthropist Steve Tisch (presented by Actors Fund President & CEO Joseph P. Benincasa); and American Federation of Labor and Congress of Industrial Organizations (AFL-CIO) President Richard L. Trumka (presented by Actors Fund Board Member and President of the International Alliance Of Theatrical Stage Employees Matthew D. Loeb).
“There’s no question that this year has been one monumental challenge after another. But one of the key strengths of The Actors Fund is our commitment to meeting the constantly changing needs of everyone in performing arts and entertainment,” said Actors Fund President and CEO Joseph P. Benincasa. “Thank you to all the great artists who shared their talents and to our esteemed honorees and donors. This virtual celebration showed the vital importance of ongoing support for The Fund, to help ensure that we continue to build stability and resiliency in our community, and provide a safety net to those in need over course of this pandemic and beyond.”
In addition to the evening’s honorees and presenters, the virtual fundraiser included online appearances by Jelani Alladin, Lynn Ahrens, Kate Baldwin, Andréa Burns, Danny Burstein, Caitlin Carter, Chuck Cooper, André De Shields, Brandon Victor Dixon, Stephen Flaherty, Mandy Gonzalez, Joshua Henry, James Monroe Iglehart, John Kander, Hailey Kilgore, LaChanze, Norm Lewis, Michael McElroy, Ruthie Ann Miles, Billy Porter, Desmond Richardson, Chita Rivera, Lea Salonga, Stephen Schwartz, Stephen Sondheim, Jonathan Tisch, Marisa Tomei, Courtney B. Vance and Nia Vardalos with special video performances by the Dance Theatre of Harlem and Broadway Inspirational Voices.
Guests joined together online to support The Actors Fund’s programs and services that foster stability and resiliency, and provide a safety net over the lifespan of members of the performing arts and entertainment industry. Since mid-March, The Actors Fund has distributed more than $16.9 million in emergency financial assistance to more than 13,900 people in need across all 50 states, Puerto Rico and some international union members.
To learn more or to donate in support of those in need in performing arts and entertainment, visit actorsfund.org.
Photo: The Actors Fund