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Brian Stokes Mitchell, Patrick Vaill and More to be Featured in DEAR NEW YORK TV Special


Brian Stokes Mitchell, Patrick Vaill and More to be Featured in DEAR NEW YORK TV Special

The John A. Reisenbach Foundation will host a 30-minute TV special Dear New York on Sat, July 11 at 7pm EST on the four major NY-broadcast network affiliates (WABC, WCBS, WNBC and FOX5) to bring attention to and raise funds for New Yorkers who have been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic (and those who were vulnerable before the pandemic). Standup comedian, actor & singer Robert Klein narrates the special which showcases interviews with four New Yorkers whose stories are emblematic of the many affected by the pandemic: comedian Gina Brillon, chef JJ Johnson, musician Antoine Roney, and Broadway performer Patrick Vaill (who played Jud Fry in the recent Tony Award-winning revival of Oklahoma!). In addition, the show features messages from Tony-winner Brian Stokes Mitchell, comedian/actress Susie Essman, and renowned chef Daniel Boulud. Dear New York was Produced by MediaPlace, with Executive Producer Scott Kushner.

The four interviews in Dear New York were filmed at beloved NYC venues Blue Note Jazz Club, Harlem restaurant Fieldtrip, Gotham Comedy Club, and The Triad Theater (built in 1984 and the original home of some of the most successful shows in Off-Broadway history: Forever Plaid, Forbidden Broadway, Celebrity Autobiography, and Spamilton).

Viewers will be invited to help make a difference by donating at Funds raised will benefit JAR grantees, including ten new grantees that support programs across the city that are helping communities impacted by COVID-19. With almost no warning, countless New York City residents including domestic workers, freelance and gig economy workers, restaurant workers and performers of all types, among many others lost much or all of their income and consequently became vulnerable to dangers like food insecurity, homelessness, and lapses in healthcare and education.

"Since its inception nearly 30 years ago, JAR has developed the ability to see what is invisible to many and gained the experience to know what to do about it," said Naomi Ryan, Executive Director of the John A. Reisenbach Foundation. "Our goal is to support our existing grantees, whose needs have become more urgent, and also to extend our reach to as many newly vulnerable New Yorkers as possible. By making life better and safer for those in need - our neighbors, family and friends - we make life better and safer for all."

In response to these emerging needs, JAR has added ten new organizations as grantees, including: Comedy Gives Back, EMS FDNY Help Fund, Food1st Foundation, Jazz Foundation of America, National Domestic Workers Alliance: Coronavirus Care Fund, New York Foundation for the Arts, NYC Health + Hospitals, Safe Horizon, The Actors Fund, and Working Today: Freelancers Relief Fund.

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