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Broadway Producers Offer $1 Million Challenge Match For BC/EFA's COVID-19 Emergency Assistance Fund

By: Mar. 24, 2020
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Broadway Producers Offer $1 Million Challenge Match For BC/EFA's COVID-19 Emergency Assistance Fund  Image

stickers on their accounts saying "Benefiting Broadway Cares" or whatever nonprofit they're helping.

In times of trouble, the Broadway community is once again uniting to make a difference. More than 20 Broadway producers are offering a $1 million challenge match to double the impact of donations to Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS' COVID-19 Emergency Assistance Fund at

The emergency assistance fund, administered by The Actors Fund, is helping those onstage, backstage and behind the scenes impacted by the coronavirus pandemic and work shutdown. With every passing day that theatres remain dark, entertainment professionals face unprecedented health and financial challenges requiring immediate attention and resources.

The producers generously coming together to offer the $1 million challenge are Spencer Ross, Rebecca Gold Milikowsky, Elizabeth Armstrong, Bill Damaschke, Diana DiMenna, Jeanne Donovan Fisher, S. Asher Gelman, John Gore & Lauren Reid/The John Gore Organization, Louise Gund, Judi Krupp, Larry & Beth Lenke, Carmen Pavlovic & Gerry Ryan, Marc Platt, Daryl Roth, Jordan Roth, Scott Rudin, Jeffrey Seller, Jana Shea, Iris Smith, David Stone and Barbara Whitman. Lauren Reid, Jordan Roth and David Stone also serve on the Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS Board of Trustees

The Broadway producers' challenge was initiated by Ross who pledged $50,000 and began recruiting other producers to join him in each pledging $50,000 for the match. Milikowsky quickly followed suit and joined Ross to co-lead the recruitment effort. Armstrong was the first to sign on. In just a few days, they had 20 producers onboard collectively offering the $1 million pledge.

With the producers' challenge, every new donation made to the emergency fund will be matched dollar for dollar, up to $1 million. You can make your tax-deductible donation at

Broadway Cares launched the emergency fund March 17 with an initial $250,000. So far, $580,000 has been raised, including $52,000 generated by Lin-Manuel Miranda during a special segment of The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon: At Home Edition.

Thanks to the producers' challenge match, the goal for Broadway Cares' COVID-19 Emergency Assistance Fund has been increased to $2 million by April 12.

The COVID-19 Emergency Assistance Fund is helping entertainment professionals meet coronavirus-related expenses. It provides urgent additional resources for the vital social service programs of The Actors Fund, including emergency financial assistance, health insurance, counseling and the operation of The Actors Fund's Friedman Health Center for the Performing Arts (729 Seventh Avenue, 12th floor, NYC).

The Actors Fund is actively processing applications for help from 5,000 people that have been submitted in the last 10 days, and expects the need to increase. Hundreds already have been provided help, including insurance assistance for a diabetic musician who lost all his gigs, food and rental assistance for actor parents with two young children and third on the way, and temporary housing for a director to self-quarantine after learning she'd been exposed to someone with COVID-19.

Just some of the participating performers include:

Carleigh Bettiol
Ben Cameron
Josh Canfield
Lilli Cooper
Jake Epstein
Mark Evans
Paloma Garcia-Lee
Chilina Kennedy
Chad Kimball
Stephanie Klemons
Nicole Kyoung-Mi Lambert
Tamika Lawrence
Telly Leung
Morgan Marcell
Lauren Molina
Bronson Norris Murphy
Desi Oakley
Ryann Redmond
John Riddle
Don Darryl Rivera
John Tartaglia
Syndee Winters