Photo Coverage: 2009 'BROADWAY WISHES' Benefit Concert in O.C.
For photos of the After-Party, click here.
SANTA ANA, CA—On Saturday, October 24, the Make-A-Wish Foundation of Orange County and the Inland Empire, a non-profit organization dedicated to granting the wishes of children with life-threatening medical conditions, threw a star-studded benefit concert that showcased unforgettable performances by some of the hottest talents on Broadway. The concert, BROADWAY WISHES, took place at the beautiful OC Pavilion Performing Arts Theater located in Santa Ana,CA.
The one-night-only concert featured an unprecedented cast roster of star after star: Tony® nominee Laura Bell Bundy (Legally Blonde, Hairspray, Wicked), Laura Osness (Grease, South Pacific, upcoming Bonnie and Clyde), Megan Hilty (Wicked, 9 to 5), Kate Shindle (Legally Blonde, Cabaret, Jeckyll & Hyde), Norm Lewis (The Little Mermaid, Les Misérables, Chicago, Miss Saigon), Tim Howar (Rent, Tonight's The Night), and Eden Espinosa (Wicked, Brooklyn, Rent). The concert featured Espinosa and Hilty reuniting for the first time on the same stage since L.A.'s stand-alone production of Wicked closed in January. (Stephen Tewksbury was also scheduled to appear but was unable to perform; Bundy joined the cast in his absence).
The night's festivities were hosted by Paul Canaan (Legally Blonde, La Cage Aux Folles, Thoroughly Modern Millie). Leading the orchestra and occasionally stepping center stage from behind the piano with some hilarious anecdotes (and "live" versions of his Deconstruction series) was co-host Seth Rudetsky. His own fiancée, James Wesley, also performed a show-stopper during the show's first act.
"Presenting a show of this caliber is a first for us and we couldn't be more excited to share this evening of entertainment with our Make-A-Wish supporters" stated Mark Pilon, President & CEO of Make-A-Wish Orange County and Inland Empire chapter. Pilon expressed that, all told, the event hopes to raise at least $15,000 to grant the wishes of children with life-threatening medical conditions. He was especially proud working alongside the concert's executive producer Robert Krueger, who helped lure the night's line-up of A-list Broadway talent. "I hope we do this every year, and I think we will," assures Pilon.
One of the many kids that benefitted from the foundation's mission is 14-year-old Taylor Carol, who got his wish granted at the concert, performing "This Is The Moment" from Frank Wildhorn's musical Jeckyll & Hyde. Carol's wish also included a chance to get voice lessons from voice coach Seth Riggs and record three songs at a studio for a CD. The young performer signed copies of his EP for patrons in the lobby. "This is totally a dream come true," expressed Carol at the VIP after-party at the Vault Lounge.
The stars were all proud and excited to be part of such an amazing event and are looking forward to their upcoming projects. Osnes drove up from rehearsals at the La Jolla Playhouse to perform a song from her upcoming production of Frank Wildhorn's new musical Bonnie & Clyde. Hilty continues her voice-over work for various animated shows and plans to be in a production at Reprise! with Jason Alexander. Bundy is busy putting the finishing touches on her upcoming album, which she described as "not your typical country album," to be released through Universal Records. She is also excited to shoot her very first music video next week.
For more information on the Make-A-Wish foundation of the OC/IE, visit www.wishocie.org.
Photos by Michael Lawrence Quintos.
Broadway Wishes 2009
OC Pavilion (Santa Ana, CA)
Seth Rudetsky rehearsing a 'live' deconstruction
Norm Lewis (pre-show dinner)
Tim Howar (pre-show dinner)
Wish recipient, Taylor Carol
The entire Broadway Wishes cast takes a bow