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VIDEO: MOULIN ROUGE Cast Members Release Music Video for Sam Smith's 'Pray' to Benefit The Actors' Fund

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Moulin Rouge cast members Ashley Loren and Morgan Marcell have created a music video for Loren's rendition of Sam Smith's song 'Pray'.

Ashley had recorded a cover of Sam Smith's 'PRAY' with her producer D'Mile sometime ago, but never released it. When Sam Smith debuted this song, it spoke so much truth about what so many of us experience when our eyes are open to what is going on in the world and there was never a more appropriate time to release her version than now.

"I remember reading an article in "Billboard" where Sam spoke about his inspiration for the song - a spiritual and social comment on the world in a way. The lyrics, while stitched with a bit of despair, really cry out to our humanity, and encourage us to find hope. It speaks of youth, foolishness, and bad decisions, but also reminds us of the fact that life is uncompromisable in its fragility, and it begs us to ask - how are we going to continue living? For me, it is a reminder to stay aware of the state of this country, of the world, and to try and make a difference somehow, to someone, or something, as much as I can - to look inward and upward, to reach out, and to Pray."

While in recovery 30 days after diagnosis of COVID 19, Ashley felt this was the time to release a song like Pray and donate to/generate awareness for some charitable organizations that are helping those in need right now.

"I reached out to Morgan Marcell, who is not only an incredible performer and friend, but also a woman who has an unparalleled creative eye, and asked if she wanted to collaborate on a video. And thankfully, she did! Her footage is truly out of this world. She made something very special and I am really proud of what we created."

Morgan is a big fan of Ashley's work and dedication to her craft. After losing their jobs on Broadway and following strict quarantine rules, they quieted all interactive collaborations. So, naturally, they craved an opportunity to create. Morgan said she was overwhelmed with gratitude and humbled by the ask.

"Not 'when,' we have to act 'now.' That goes for donating, giving back, doing the project you never did. As part of the Broadway community, we spend our careers next to people who have the complimentary skills to help us grow. Ashley is one of those colleagues and she reminded me creativity isn't dead, it's just different. Look around. We're in this together. Pray taught us both about our passions individually, and together it's helping us give back."

When scouting locations, Morgan knew that the home of Broadway had to be at the heart of this video. For them, they lost their jobs, their ability to create on stage, but so many have lost so much more. Nobody is invincible or immune to this novel virus, and it has changed everything - our world may never be the same.

The majority of the cast of Moulin Rouge contracted the virus, and thanks to the brave and dedicated front line workers, they are all now safe at home recovering. "We felt like we needed to do something. What we know how to do is create, so we did just that. Not everyone has been as lucky as we have, and we know that. We just hope this collaboration helps even one person, the way that filming it helped us."

'"It was wild, but in that moment of silence, we knew that what we were creating was something beautiful", Ashley said, "New York City is one of the most resilient cities in the country. We may not be invincible, but we are strong, and yes, we are stronger together."

Check out the video here:

Moulin Rouge! The Musical is directed by Tony Award nominee Alex Timbers and with a book by Tony Award winner John Logan, choreography by Sonya Tayeh and music supervision, orchestrations and arrangements by Justin Levine.

Enter a world of splendor and romance, of eye-popping excess, of glitz, grandeur and glory! A world where Bohemians and aristocrats rub elbows and revel in electrifying enchantment. Pop the champagne and prepare for the spectacular spectacular...Welcome to Moulin Rouge! The Musical.

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