Fred Ebb Foundation Donates Record $1.4 Million to BC/EFA
The Fred Ebb Foundation (Mitchell Bernard, Trustee) has announced that its 2013 donation to Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS will total $1.4 million dollars, marking the largest single contribution in BC/EFA history and bringing the foundation's total contribution to BC/EFA to $8.35 million since 2005.
The foundation, which is funded by royalties from the late award-winning lyricist Fred Ebb's vast catalogue of work, makes an annual donation to BC/EFA. This contribution tops last year's donation of $1.3 million dollars which was, at the time, the largest single contribution in BC/EFA history.
"Fred Ebb extraordinary legacy as an artist is matched only by his great generosity of spirit. With John Kander, Fred gave us some of the most delightful, smart and hilarious lyrics in more than a dozen groundbreaking and acclaimed musicals of the last 50 years. Fred's lyrics abound with a wry humor, a zest for living and genuine concern and compassion for his fellow travelers, particularly those with whom he worked in the theatre community," said BC/EFA Executive Director Tom Viola. "This $1.4 million gift from the Fred Ebb Foundation enables BC/EFA to secure and increase our support for The Actors Fund, as well as hundreds of AIDS and family service organizations, at a time when other funding sources are cutting back, as more and more men, women and children reach out for help. With this legacy of extraordinary support since 2005, Fred plays a leading role in BC/EFA's best work as a grant making organization; perhaps not what he had in mind when he wrote the lyrics to "Class", but certainly what he expressed in the sentiments of "A Quiet Thing. Thank you, Fred! We are forever grateful."
The Fred Ebb Foundation, in association with the Roundabout Theatre Company (Todd Haimes, Artistic Director) also presents an annual award, named for Mr. Ebb, to aspiring musical theatre songwriters. The Fred Ebb Award recognizes excellence in musical theatre songwriting, by a songwriter or songwriting team that has not yet achieved significant commercial success. The award is meant to encourage and support aspiring songwriters to create new works for the musical theatre, and includes a $50,000 award. This year's award was presented to Michael Kooman and Christopher Dimond. Past winners include John Bucchino (2005), Steve Lutvak and Robert L. Freedman (2006), Peter Mills (2007),Adam Gwon (2008), Marcy Heisler and Zina Goldrich (2009), Douglas J. Cohen (2010), Jeff Blumenkrantz(2011) and Sam Willmott (2012). The selection panel is comprised of: Foundation Trustee Mitchell Bernard; lyricist, writer and composer Sheldon Harnick; music director David Loud; actress Julia Murney; playwright and producerTim Pinckney; and theatre producer Arthur Whitelaw.
Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS is one of the nation's leading industry-based, nonprofit AIDS fundraising and grant-making organizations. By drawing upon the talents, resources and generosity of the American theatre community, since 1988 BC/EFA has raised more than $250 million for essential services for people with AIDS and other critical illnesses across the United States.