NEW YORK, N.Y. — On June 13, 8 p.m., at The Cutting Room, 44 E. 32nd St., over a dozen native North Carolina Broadway performers will join composers Stephen Schwartz and Jeanine Tesori for Broadway Voices for NC, a concert and fundraiser aimed at combatting HB2.
The evening will feature an array of “proud” North Carolinians on a mission to celebrate tolerance and acceptance to prove that #WeAreNotThis.
The concert is being organized by Raleigh, N.C., natives and Broadway performers Laurel Harris and Rob Marnell who met in their youth at a production of “Cinderella” at Raleigh Little Theatre and remain close to their North Carolina roots.
Additional producers are Michael McCorry Rose and Tralen Doler, also serving as the director of the event.
“We’ve been outraged and disappointed in our home state for passing this horrendous and insulting bill and wanted to do something about it from our new home in New York City,” Harris stated. “We hope that by pulling together some of our fellow thespians and composer friends, many of whom are fellow N.C. natives, we’ll be able to create a stir and get Governor McCrory’s attention. We believe change and forward progress will ultimately win out over oppressive steps backwards, and we’re raising funds for those leading the fight.”
Non-N.C. Natives but allies against HB2 performing are award-winning composers Tesori and Schwartz. Tesori won the Tony Award last year for Best Score for “Fun Home,” which also won the Tony Award for Best Musical. Schwartz has previously spoken out against HB2 and recently revoked performance rights to his musicals in North Carolina in protest of the legislation. The Grammy and Academy Award-winning composer has written 18 musicals, including “Wicked,” “Godspell,” “Pippin” and “Children of Eden.”
In addition to performances by Harris and Marnell, the concert will feature performances by many high-profile North Carolinians, now living and performing in New York, including; Beth Leavel, Ariana Debose, Daniel Watts, Lindsay Northen, Melvin Tunstall, Tally Sessions and Brandon Ellis.
Trans writer and advocate Vivian Taylor, former executive director of Integrity USA and fellow North Carolina native, will serve as the evening’s keynote speaker.
Hosting the event is Geena Rocero, a model, TED speaker and activist. She is the founder of Gender Proud, an advocacy and aid organization that stands up for the right of transgender people worldwide to “self-identify with the fewest possible barriers.”
All proceeds from the event will benefit Equality North Carolina. Additional proceeds will go to local LGBT centers whose members are affected by the passage of the bill.
Tickets are $40/general admission and $75/premium and are available online at bit.ly/1Z9dO8r.