The two-day spectacular features the companies of various Broadway, Off-Broadway and touring productions offering skits, songs and/or dances as well as a bonnet created specially for the competition.
Hosts for the annual event include Roger Bart, Megan Mullally, Sierra Boggess, Daniel Evans, Jenna Russell, Jonathan Groff, Tituss Burgess, Lea Michele, Ron Kunene, Tshidi Manye, Kelli O'Hara and Tom Wopat.
This year's judges (at the April 29 performance) include an equally starry lot: Sebastian Arcelus, Stephanie J. Block, Dylan Baker, Norm Lewis, Chris March, S. Epatha Merkerson, Matthew Morrison, general manager Albert Poland and casting director Bernie Telsey. Judges will be introduced by November co-stars Nathan Lane and Laurie Metcalf.
Among those shows presenting bonnets are August: Osage County, Mary Poppins, Xanadu, South Pacific, Naked Boys Singing, Sunday in the Park with George, Spamalot, Spring Awakening, Mamma Mia!, The Lion King, In the Heights, Passing Strange, Hairspray, Gypsy, Rent, Dancers Responding to AIDS represented by MOMIX and the national tours of Jersey Boys and The Lion King. The Broadway companies of Wicked and Legally Blonde will co-present a bonnet.
Tony winners Harvey Fierstein, Faith Prince and David Hyde Pierce will announce the winners of the Easter Bonnet top fundraising and best presentation awards at the April 29 performance. The competition also boasts the return of Officer Lockstock and Little Sally (Don Richard and Jen Cody) and 104 year-old original Ziegfeld Girl, Doris Eaton Travis. The annual event will close with Tony Award winner Anika Noni Rose's performance of David Friedman's "Help Is On The Way."
A benefit for BC/EFA, the Easter Bonnet Competition ends a six-week period of intensive fundraising by the assorted Broadway and Off-Broadway shows. Curtain speeches, autographed posters and program sales, auctions and cabaret performances are all part of the fundraising effort, which brings in hundreds of thousands of dollars. The company that raises the most funds for BC/EFA will be awarded a prize at the Easter Bonnet Competition. A second prize will be awarded to the company with the best bonnet design and presentation. Additional awards will be presented to the Broadway play, national tour and Off-Broadway production raising the most money.
Last year's competition raised $3,345,997 for the charitable organization.
For ticket information visit www.broadwaycares.org or call (212) 840-0770, ext. 268. Broadway Cares/Equity Fights AIDS is the nation's leading industry-based, nonprofit AIDS fund-raising and grant-making organization.