The ceremony, which begins at 5:15 PM in Father Duffy Square, will kick off with a performance from husband-and-wife Broadway couple, Carolee Carmello (Mamma Mia!) and Greg Edelman (Wonderful Town). The talented duo will perform an a cappella version of "Winter Wonderland." Also on hand will be cast members from the Tony-winning musical Avenue Q (Angela Ai, Jennifer Barnhart, Stephanie D'Abruzzo, Carmen Ruby Floyd, Jordan Gelber, Phoebe Kruetz and Ann Sanders), who will be joined by students from The Professional Performing Arts School.
In addition to the lighting of the tree, the ceremony will also include the presentation of a $5,000 gift to The Actor's Fund's Phyllis Newman Women's Health Initiative. Initiated by Actor's Fund Trustee Newman, the Women’s Health Initiative offers a roster of services to help women access health care and to coordinate support services. For more information, go to www.actorsfund.org.
Dame Edna Everage is currently starring on Broadway in Dame Edna: Back With a Vengeance, which officially opens at the Music Box Theatre Nov. 21. Dubbed Australia's First Lady, Dame Edna is the invention of Barry Humphries, a successful character actor in Europe and Australia as well as an esteemed landscape painter. Some of Humphries' theatrical credits include roles in Waiting for Godot, Oliver! and Maggie May, but his most successful outings have been as Dame Edna, a character he created in 1955. Humphries was given the Order of Australia in 1982 and was endowed with an Honorary Doctorate of Griffith University in Australia in 1994. The Dame found success on Broadway during the 2000 season with her Tony Award-winning show, Dame Edna: The Royal Tour.
Brooke Shields is back on Broadway in the revival of Wonderful Town, playing aspiring writer Ruth Sherwood. On Broadway Shields has also been seen in Grease! and Cabaret, and her Off-Broadway credits include The Vagina Monologues and The Exonerated. On screen Shields has been seen in “Pretty Baby,” “Endless Love,” “The Weekend,” “The Bachelor” and “King of the Gypsies.” She won an American Comedy Award for a guest appearance on “Friends,” which led to her hit series “Suddenly Susan.”
Sponsored by Theatre Development Fund, The League of American Theatres and Producers and The Times Square Alliance, the annual ceremony is free and open to the public. Father Duffy Square is located at the corner of Broadway and 46th Street.