You won’t only get your weekend dose of fun, but you will also be benefitting victims of Hurricane Sandy. How exactly? On the evening of Saturday, December 15, Act-Out! Acting School will be hosting a benefit concert called “Act-Out for New York: A Concert to Benefit the Victims of Hurricane Sandy.”
This two-hour performance is set to begin at 5 p.m. and will feature musical theatre performances of pieces from “Evita,” as well as folk, pop and rock musicians performing Lady Gaga songs, and more. Several members of the student body of Act-Out, ranging from 12 to 50, such as Adele Wendt, Ashley Chico, Isabella Sirota, Carolyn Dellinger, Mike Whelan and Sarah Glynn-Carr, will also take the stage.
“It should be a nice sort of cabaret,” said the Artistic Director of Act-Out! Acting School, John Stillwaggon. “It’ll be an opportunity to bring a little music and a little joy into people’s lives while helping us raise money for a good cause.”
Stillwaggon continued, “[I’m] proud of Act-Out’s long history of service. After the earthquake in Haiti, we had a fundraiser; proceeds of acting lessons were donated to Haiti relief efforts.
“When we did ‘Peter Pan,’ those proceeds were donated to the Great Ormond Street Hospital in England,” he added, explaining that the hospital is known internationally for receiving the rights from J.M. Barrie, the creator of “Peter Pan.” “I always try to make that a part of Act-Out.”
Tickets for the concert, which is set to take place at The Block Academy, 133 27th Avenue, are $25 each or two for $40. The money raised will go towards the Tunnel to Towers Sandy relief efforts.
“We chose this one because they are a solid organization which puts the money right in people’s hands,” Stillwaggon said adding that the foundation lets you choose the neighborhood to which you would like to contribute.
“We’re probably going to donate between Brooklyn and Long Island, but if people say ‘I want my $25 to go to Breezy Point,’ they can do it and the money you’re spending is going right where you want it.”
Stillwaggon spoke of how when the storm happened, his crew was on tour for “Treasure Island” in California. “We started to hear what was happening with Hurricane Sandy; Things were looking bad,” he recalled. “I felt fortunate that I was not in town, but bad and frustrated that there was nothing I could do.”
Once he headed back, he visited his home town in Long Island and realized that where he had gone to school had been destroyed. He volunteered in Long Beach, thinking about what the acting school could contribute, and quickly came up with a fundraiser billed as a “good-for-all-ages, family-friendly concert.
“It’ll be a really fun night,” Stillwaggon concluded.
Tickets can be purchased at the door, or if you have been directly impacted by the storm, contact Stillwaggon at: John_stillwaggon@yahoo.com and he will place you on a VIP list at no charge.
Also, people can donate at least $25 through the Tunnel-to-Towers website: https://www.tunneltotowersfoundation.org/hsrl-donate.aspx . When you’re done, print out the confirmation and it’ll serve you as a receipt for the show.