Audra McDonald, Brian Stokes Mitchell and More to Perform at May 8 Actors' Fund Gala

News   Audra McDonald, Brian Stokes Mitchell and More to Perform at May 8 Actors' Fund Gala
The Actors' Fund of America's May 8 gala dinner and tribute performance will honor Broadway producer Rocco Landesman, Actors' Equity Executive Director Alan Eisenberg and the President of the League of American Theatres and Producers, Jed Bernstein.

The annual event — which begins at 6 PM with cocktails, followed by dinner and an all-star tribute performance at 7 PM — will be held at Cipriani 42nd Street. Among those set to entertain are Tony Award winners Audra McDonald and Brian Stokes Mitchell, Big River's Daniel Jenkins and the Jersey Boys.

Kate Burton will present Jed Bernstein with the Nedda Harrigan Logan Award, and Lynn Redgrave will present Alan Eisenberg with the same honor. The Actors' Fund Medal of Honor will be presented to Rocco Landesman by current Odd Couple star Matthew Broderick.

The Actors' Fund Nedda Harrigan Logan Award was inspired by former actress and Actors' Fund President Nedda Harrigan Logan. Logan was the daughter of legendary performer Ned Harrigan, of Harrigan and Hart, and the wife of Broadway producer Joshua Logan. The Nedda Harrigan Logan Award is a music box that plays the familiar tune "H-A-Double R-I-G-A-N-spells Harrigan," which was written by Logan's father and George M. Cohan.

The first Actors' Fund Medal of Honor was awarded in 1910 to President William Howard Taft. The medal was not given again until 1958. Since that time, the League has honored "individuals and organizations that enrich the entertainment community," including politicians, corporate leaders, Broadway producers, actors and writers. Recipients of the Medal of Honor include Mayors Robert Wagner and John Lindsay, President Ronald Reagan, Bernard Jacobs, Gerald Schoenfeld, Angela Lansbury, Neil Simon and Bernadette Peters.

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The Actors' Fund, which was founded in 1882, is a non-profit organization that provides for the social welfare of all entertainment professionals. Some of the many programs The Actors' Fund provides include a nursing home and assisted living care facility; senior and disabled programs; mental health services; chemical dependency services; entertainment industry assistance programs; the Phyllis Newman Women's Health Initiative; the AIDS Initiative; and supportive housing on both coasts.

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