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Maureen McGovern Emcee's Detroit's Concert for a Cure on December 12

December 1 is World AIDS Day, and a closer look at the numbers might make you realize it's not as far away from home as you might have thought. According to the Michigan Department of Community Health, there are 11,932 people living in Michigan with HIV or AIDS - and only three counties in the state have no reported cases.

Sadly, the MDCH estimates there are 16,200 people living in the state with HIV or AIDS, meaning more than 4,000 people are estimated to be living without proper diagnosis. The numbers are scary but, luckily, there are charities such as Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS to raise awareness and much-needed funding for support and awareness groups around the country.

Detroit Concert for a Cure, one of the primary fund-raising organizations in Michigan for BC/EFA, is working toward a $10,000 fund-raising goal with its current project, SNOWTUNES, a benefit concert featuring a star-studded cast of Broadway performers and the best in local talent.

Tickets ($25) are on sale now for the 7 p.m. Dec. 12 concert at Stagecrafters' Baldwin Theatre, 415 S. Lafayette Ave., Royal Oak. A star-studded cast, including emcee Maureen McGovern (The Morning After), will perform a variety of holiday favorites throughout the evening.

Also performing will be cast members from Little Women: The Musical, which will be playing at the Fisher Theatre in Detroit until January 1st. Along with a lineup of talented local performers, recently added to the cast are a handful of members from popular Broadway and national tour productions including Hair, Hedwig and the Angry Inch and Mamma Mia! Among them is Tonya Doran, who originated the role of Lisa for Mamma Mia! on Broadway.

In Michigan alone, BC/EFA gave $38,000 to support groups in 2004. Groups such as AIDS Partnership Michigan and Community Health Awareness Group in Detroit and the HIV/AIDS Resource Center in Ypsilanti have been some of the recent benefactors. BC/EFA has given similar amounts of grants in previous years, and it has given more than $61 million nationally since being founded in 1987.

SNOWTUNES is the third Detroit Concert for a Cure benefit for BC/EFA. Two previous concerts raised more than $12,000 for AIDS-related charities, including funding for the Midwest AIDS Prevention Project.

Tickets for SNOWTUNES are available through the Stagecrafters box office. To order, call (248) 541-6430 or order online at www.theatermania.com. Phone-in box office hours are 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday and 7 to 9 p.m. Thursday. Find more at www.stagecrafters.org.

To find out more about BC/EFA, visit www.bcefa.org.


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