Promotional appearances will be made by certain Broadway cast members in support of the Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS holiday CD, “Broadway’s Greatest Gifts: Benefits for a Cure 2000” from Rock-it Records.
Following a recent boost from talk show host Rosie O’Donnell on her show, the Broadway benefit CD will be promoted with an appearance on ABC World News Now sometime next week.
Production sources said that performances are expected from The Music Man’s Martha Hawley, Dan Sharkey and Michael-Leon Wooley singing "Swing, Mister Santa Claus, Swing"; and Jekyll and Hyde’s Juan Betancur, Kim Breden, Beth Durham, John Treacy Egan, Susan Fortunato, Erika Greene, Robert Jensen, Ingrid Ladendorf, Stuart Marland, Corinne Melancon, Brad Oscar, Carl Pasbjerg, Jennifer Piech, Sandy Rosenberg, Rebecca Spencer, Martin Van Treuren and Carmen Yurich performing their "Chanukah Medley", featuring three songs written by Paul Zim and arranged by Jekyll and Hyde’s Jan Rosenberg.
As reported earlier, Rock-it Science Records has released it’s annual holiday season benefit record, the “Broadway’s Greatest Gifts: Benefits for a Cure 2000” CD. Produced expressly for the benefit of Broadway Cares/ Equity Fights Aids (BC/EFA), “Broadway’s Greatest Gifts" features “original versions of new and old holiday music from casts of almost every show of the Broadway 2000 season.”
Included on the album are cast members from the following shows: Aida, “O Come All Ye Faithful”; Annie Get Your Gun “Count Your Blessings Instead of Sheep”; Beauty and the Beast, “To Christmas”; Cabaret, “We Three Kings”; Cats (final cast), “It Came Upon A Midnight Clear”; Chicago, “Deck The Halls (of Our Winnebago...)”; Jekyll & Hyde, “Chanukah Medley (composed by Paul Zim)”; Jesus Christ Superstar, “We Wish You A Merry Christmas”; Kiss Me Kate “The Colors Of Christmas”; The Lion King, “South African Carol “Esiyabonga”/“Amazing Grace”; Les Miserables, “Wassail Song”; Miss Saigon, “Joy To The World”; The Music Man, “Swing, Mister Santa Claus, Swing!!”; The Phantom Of The Opera, “I Wonder As I Wander”; Rent , “Silent Night”; and Riverdance—On Broadway, “The Wexford Carol.” The album was recorded in a single, all-day recording session on Sept. 11 at St. John’s Lutheran Church in the West Village. Creative credit for the record goes to engineer George Huckins (Saturday Night Fever), producer Lynn C. Pinto (The Sound of Music), art director Ann Gontarski and arranger/musical director David Nehls (The Great American Trailer Park Musical).
So far this season, the “Broadway’s Greatest Gifts” CD is on track to be the best-selling album in its series—sales at shows have “already raised in excess of $130,000 for BC/EFA during the “Gypsy of the Year” fund raiser and through BC/EFA catalogue sales. BC/EFA’s catalogue also includes the Rock it Science Records releases “Broadway’s Greatest Gifts: Carols for a Cure 1999” and “Simple Gifts: Carols from the Abbey” (The nuns and von Trapp kids from Broadway’s The Sound Of Music.
The “Broadway’s Greatest Gifts” CD is $20 plus shipping and can be ordered by calling BC/EFA at (212) 840-0770 ext. 250 or visiting www.broadwaycares.org. Patrons may call a toll-free number outside New York at (888) 497-4333.
—By Murdoch McBride