Broadway Stars Team Up for the “It Gets Better” Fight

Inside Track   Broadway Stars Team Up for the “It Gets Better” Fight
 
Broadway Cares/ Equity Fights AIDS is an all-hands-on-deck kind of operation, as was evident when I caught their Tony-winning executive director Tom Viola this past Sunday quietly joining the annual Audience Appeals “bucket brigade” along with the cast of Wicked (side note — when you see those buckets outside the theatres in the coming weeks, folks, drop what you can! The change ads up — last year's winter Appeals period raised over $4.6 million!)


In the wake of a string of recent bullying-related suicides (mostly among gay teens), BC/EFA teamed up with Broadway Impact, Broadway.com and actors Susan Blackwell, Hunter Bell and Matt Vogel, to create an “It Gets Better” video featuring over 60 writers, producers, performers, directors, etc., with personal confessionals about their own trials and tribulations about being bullied as a teen, or feeling like an outsider.

Some confessionals include:

Moisés Kaufman: “It was made very clear to me that being gay was the worst possible thing any human being could be.”

Nathan Lane: “There’s nothing better than going to a high school reunion and running into the guy that called you ‘faggot’ and he’s now morbidly obese in a dead-end job and you’ve arrived in a chauffer-driven town car with your fabulous partner.”

Cherry Jones: “Like every gay kid, I thought I was the only one.”

Terrence McNally: "I remembered what the nuns and priests taught me — ‘That God made man in his image’ — and I don’t think God made anything bad."

Marc Shaiman: “There are wonderful people all over the Earth that get you.”

In addition to the video, BC/EFA donated $25,000 to The Trevor Project, the leading national organization focused on crisis and suicide prevention efforts among lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender and questioning (LGBTQ) youth, in the name of the Broadway community.  The It Gets Better Project was created by writer Dan Savage, who documented his own problems being a gay man trying to adopt a child in the Off-Broadway musical The Kid.

In a joint statement, Blackwell, Bell and Vogel said, “Our intent with this video is to provide young people with a message of hope and support.... We are proud to stand up with the Broadway community, who has once again demonstrated that when there is a crisis, it will show up and channel its voice, creative energy and money toward positive change and inspiring activism.”

CLICK HERE TO WATCH THE VIDEO

For anyone in crisis or needing assistance:
The Trevor Project’s Trevor Lifeline: 866-4-U-TREVOR (866-488-7386)
Toll free, confidential and available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

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