S. Epatha Merkerson, Peri Gilpin & More Set for A SHIFT IN GRAVITY Benefit Reading Today

Golden Globe and Emmy Award winner S. Epatha Merkerson ("Law & Order"), Screen Actors Guild Award winner Peri Gilpin ("Frasier"), Daniel Mitura and Jean Brassard are set for benefit reading of Kathleen McGhee-Anderson's new play A SHIFT IN GRAVITY, directed by Ricardo Khan today, December 9 at 8:30pm at The Alice Griffin Jewel Box Theater at The Pershing Square Signature Center (480 West 42nd Street) in Manhattan. A SHIFT IN GRAVITY is presented by 651 ARTS and associated produced by Lorraine Rodriquez-Reyes.

All proceeds from the benefit performance of A SHIFT IN GRAVITY will benefit Girls Write Now - an organization currently celebrating 15 years of supporting and nurturing the creative spirit of at-risk and underserved girls in the NYC public school system.

A SHIFT IN GRAVITY centers on two baby boomer friends - both writers - who find their once solid friendship tested by the recent arrival of a young, handsome journalist.

Tickets for the benefit performance of A SHIFT IN GRAVITY at $100 and can be purchased online at TicketCentral.

S. Epatha Merkerson is best known for her portrayal of Lieutenant Anita Van Buren on NBC's Law & Order (2006/2010/2011 NAACP Image Award). She received an Emmy, Golden Globe, SAG and Image Award for her performance as Nanny Crosby in the HBO movie Lackwanna Blues, and can be seen in Steven Spielberg's LINCOLN and in the comedy PEEPLES.

In theatre, Ms. Merkerson has received one Helen Hayes Award, two Obie Awards, two Lucille Lortel Award nominations, and two Tony Award nominations. She has appeared in numerous television movies, made guest appearances in a variety of television series as well as appearing as a regular on Peewee's Playhouse. The Contradictions of Fair Hope, Ms. Merkerson first feature documentary will air on the STARZ Channel in February 2014.

Peri Gilpin played Roz Doyle in the U.S. television series Frasier from 1993 until 2004. Along with the principal cast, Gilpin won a Screen Actors Guild Award for Outstanding Performance by an Ensemble in a Comedy Series in 1999. She has also received a Gracie Award in the category of "Outstanding Female Actor in a Supporting Role in a Drama Series" for her performance in the ABC Family drama Make It or Break It.

Daniel Mitura has had several plays produced in New York and internationally. His adaptation of Oscar Wilde's The Picture of Dorian Gray (dir. Henning Hegland) played at Theatre Row and is currently in production in Brazil for a tour in Rio and Lisbon. His play Locker Room Talk was performed at the Cherry Lane Theatre. Other works include The Genius! about the life of Salvador Dali. He is a graduate of Columbia University with a B.A. in Art History and Theater.

Originally from Quebec City, Jean Brassard is the recipient of a 2012 Bistro Award for his singing tribute to Yves Montand, "The Kid From Paris" (CD available on cdbaby.com). For 5 years, Jean was also the voice of the WWE for all their International French market. He is also the voice of 31 audiobook titles which can find on audible.com.

Kathleen McGhee-Anderson is a pioneer as one of the first Black women to work as a writer and producer for several hit TV series, including Little House on the Prairie, The Cosby Show, Touched by an Angel, and most recently the ABC series Lincoln Heights. She boasts an impressive roster of network and film hubs which she has developed, sold pilots to, and collaborated with, including such heavyweights as NBC, Fox, CBS, Showtime, Columbia Pictures, and Paramount Motion Pictures.

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