Broad­way stars plan In­au­gu­ra­tion Day ben­e­fit

Daily Freeman (Kingston, NY) - - FRONT PAGE - By Mark Kennedy Online, visit www. con­cert4amer­ica2017.org/

A con­cert called 'Stand Up, Sing Out' will be a fundraiser for hu­man rights or­ga­ni­za­tions.

Some of Broad­way’s big­gest stars — in­clud­ing Chita Rivera, Kelli O’Hara, Brian Stokes Mitchell, Betty Buck­ley, Jessie Mueller and Billy Porter — will be spend­ing In­au­gu­ra­tion Day at a con­cert in New York City that raises money for hu­man rights or­ga­ni­za­tions.

“Con­cert for Amer­ica: Stand Up, Sing Out! “will be held at The Town Hall in Man­hat­tan on Jan. 20. It’s in­tended to be the first in a se­ries of monthly benef i t con­certs and will be streamed live on Face­book.

Oth­ers slated to per­form in­clude Sharon Gless, An­drea Martin, Bebe Neuwirth, Rosie O’Don­nell, Rosie Perez, Lil­lias White, Judy Gold, Caro­line Rhea, Stephanie Mills and Charles Busch. The con­cert is the brain­child of Seth Rudet­sky and James Wes­ley, who also or­ga­nized the Broad­way For Or­lando fundrais­ing con­cert.

Mueller, cur­rently star­ring in “Wait­ress,” will reach back to her Tony Award-win­ning role as Ca­role King to sing “Beau­ti­ful” and hopes its mes­sage of love and tol­er­ance res­onates.

“Hate comes from a lack of love, so we can’t fight it with more of its own tox­i­c­ity, we have to fill it with love,” she said. “There are re­ally big things at stake. Things we can’t save or so­lid­ify or safe­guard alone. We have to think big­ger, we have to ask for help, we have to reach out to one another and band to­gether. I hope this con­cert can be an ex­am­ple of that.”

Pro­ceeds will ben­e­fit groups that pro­tect civil rights, women’s health and en­vi­ron­men­tal pro­tec­tion, in­clud­ing Planned Par­ent­hood, South­ern Poverty Law Cen­ter, Na­tional Im­mi­gra­tion Law Cen­ter and the Sierra Club Foun­da­tion. Tick­ets range from $25 to $50.

Porter, who won a Tony in “Kinky Boots,” plans to sing his ver­sion of the Rich- ard Rodgers’ clas­sic “Edel­weiss.” It’s a song on his up­com­ing CD that will be re­leased on In­au­gu­ra­tion Day.

“Edel­weiss is a f lower that blooms in the worst of con­di­tions,” he said. “It’s a song of hope, of peace, a heal­ing prayer for a coun­try in time of cri­sis. We need it now more than ever.”

PHOTO BY CHRIS PIZZELLO — IN­VI­SION — THE AS­SO­CI­ATED PRESS FILE

This Sept. 27, 2016, file photo shows Brian Stokes Mitchell at the Los An­ge­les Phil­har­monic’s Walt Dis­ney Con­cert Hall Open­ing Night Con­cert and Gala in Los An­ge­les. Mitchell will join Betty Buck­ley, Jessie Mueller, Kelli O’Hara, Chita Rivera and Billy Porter on In­au­gu­ra­tion Day at a con­cert in New York City that raises money for hu­man rights or­ga­ni­za­tions. It’s in­tended to be the first in a se­ries of monthly ben­e­fit con­certs and will be streamed live on Face­book.

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