Tituss Burgess, Alex Newell and More to Appear On BEYOND THE SHELTER A Virtual Pride Party And Benefit Concert
On June 4, 2020 at 8 pm EDT, the stars of Broadway, TV, film, dance, and opera will unite for an Interactive Virtual Pride Kick-Off Party to raise money for New Alternatives, an organization supporting the LGBTQ+ homeless youth.
Director/Choreographer Matthew Johnson Harris (Take Me to the World at Carnegie Hall, Alvin Ailey core instructor) will direct and host the show. Harris has assembled a diverse cast of the entertainment industry's favorite stars for an interactive evening of singing, dancing, sing-alongs, trivia, and more! "The majority of homeless LGBTQI youth are African American or Latinx," says Harris. "Approximately 57% of heads of household in shelters are Black, 32 percent are Hispanic/Latinx, 7% are white.* Black or African-American youth have an 83% higher risk for homelessness. LGBT youth have a 120% higher risk for homelessness.** At New Alternatives, black youth make up 57% of their clientele. It was important for me to assemble a diverse cast that could be aspirational for the kids with 90% of our cast self-identifying as a person of color, and 85% LGBTQ+."
Beyond the Shelter will feature appearances and performances by Tituss Burgess (The Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt), Alex Newell (Glee, Zoey's Extraordinary Playlist), Lauren Patten (Jagged Little Pill), L Morgan Lee (A Strange Loop), Marty Thomas (Wicked, Xanadu), Zach Miko (international model), Mykal Kilgore (recording artist, Jesus Christ Superstar Live), Jevon McFerrin (Hamilton, BET's Twenties), Christian Dante White (My Fair Lady, Scottsboro Boys), Nicholas Rodriguez (One Life to Live, Tarzan), Elizabeth Stanley (Jagged Little Pill, On the Town), Angela Birchett (Lifetime's The Clark Sisters, The Color Purple), Candice Marie Woods (Ain't Too Proud, Book of Mormon), Antoine L. Smith (MJ the Musical, The Color Purple), Aisha Jackson (Frozen, Waitress), Alyssa FOX (Frozen, Wicked), Rodrick Covington (Once on This Island), Jonathan Burke (Choir Boy, The Inheritance) Steven LaBrie (The Barber of Seville, Bellini's La Straniera), Brie Zimmer (Happy Birthday, Wanda June), Jarvis Manning (Ain't Too Proud), Emilie Battle (Broadway Bounty Hunter, Dear Evan Hansen), Madge Dietrich (Kinky Boots), Eddie Noel Rodriguez (On Your Feet), Marquise Hitchcock (Radio City Music Hall Christmas Spectacular), Austin Ku (Pacific Overtures), Chondra Profit (Lion King), Derrick Davis (The Phantom of The Opera), Jenny Mollet (The Color Purple), Lynda DeFuria (Kinky Boots), Shatisha Bryant, Anne Fraser Thomas (The Full Monty), Stephanie Umoh (Hamilton, Ragtime), Elijah Caldwell (A Strange Loop), Antwayn Hopper (A Strange Loop, Hair), Hailee Kaleem Wright (Beautiful) , Genesis Be, Bryin Woods, Annastasia Victory, and Rev. Jacqui Lewis.
New Alternatives' varied programming enables clients to transition out of the shelter system to stable adult lives by providing long-term support, weekly case management, education services, life skills training, community-building recreational activities, opportunities for self-expression, and programs for HIV+ youth. June is usually a very fruitful time for organizations like New Alternatives, but with all Pride events being cancelled this year, continued sustainable care hangs in the balance. 100% of donations from the show will go to support New Alternatives.
"Though social gatherings may be cancelled, you can't cancel Pride. Pride is all about celebrating your individual truth," Harris says. "We will candidly talk about race, homophobia, and pushing on to freedom. So bring tissues, pour a cocktail, and get ready for an uplifting 90 mins that is extremely needed right now."
If you are unable to attend, you can donate here: https://fundraise.newalternativesnyc.org/beyondtheshelter
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